Dictionaries try to define beauty, but they can only provide vague glances at the truth. Instead of dictionary definitions, beauty is more accurately described with examples: Mother Mary is beautiful, love is beautiful, a perfect sky is beautiful, a symphony is beautiful, and you are beautiful.

Do you disagree? You’ve probably overheard that you are beautiful because God made you that way. You might even think that if I try to tell you that you are beautiful because you are made in the image and likeness of God that you’ll stop reading this article because you’ve heard that too many times. Maybe by this point in your life you think that it’s cheesy to say that you’re perfect just the way you are. So, let me instead ask you why do you reject the compliment?

Told that they are beautiful, people in this video react differently. There are those who blush and take the compliment gracefully. Others don’t believe the compliment and reject it meekly in disbelief. Some think it’s a joke, start feeling awkward, or even grow angry, considering it to be basically an insult! How do you react to people calling you beautiful?

I have heard it said that you can call someone beautiful a hundred times but they will remember the one time you called them ugly forever. Why is it easier for us to accept an insult rather than a compliment? I think that insults stick with us because they hurt us and we have to heal from them. Why do they hurt us, then? Because oftentimes insults are lies. Where the truth sets us free, lies will bind us up in pain. If you have ever been insulted by loved ones, strangers, or yourself, let it go, because an insult is, according to the Oxford English Dictionary, to “speak to or treat with disrespect or scornful abuse.” It’s actually derived from words meaning to trample on. With insults, you’re letting a person walk right over you!

So take a compliment instead. Actually, you need to gracefully accept that you are beautiful.

Here are three different ways to look at why you need to do this:

1. An incomparable gift. Imagine someone gave you a gift. It’s rude to reject the gift, deny that you were given it, or try to give it back as if you hate it, right? It’s disrespectful, especially if the giver is someone of great honor. So, think of all the gifts God has given you in your life, including your inner and outer beauty, and how you treat those gifts through unjust comparisons to others. The reason you are incomparable is because one person’s beauty is just a beautiful as another’s, just a different kind of beauty. Your comparisons and rejections of your own beauty is rejecting the gift God gave you.

2. The humble option. “The proud man counts his newspaper clippings, the humble man his blessings,” Fulton J. Sheen is quoted. It’s not arrogant to accept that you are beautiful. It would be arrogant to shout that you are more beautiful than everyone else. It’s also not humble to be a doormat, letting yourself think you are something other than the beautiful person you are. Humility is knowing that you are beautiful, knowing your place in the world, and fulfilling your vocation. You need to realize that you are beautiful to fully count your blessings and even to practice the virtue of true humility.

3. Straight from your Creator. God loves you, and He considers you beautiful. Get to know him better, and He will tell you: “You are altogether beautiful, my love; there is no flaw in you” (Song of Solomon 4:7). If you can’t believe other people’s compliments and you refuse to see it yourself in the mirror, ask God to show you that you are beautiful. Ask Him why you are beautiful. He will tell you exactly what you need to hear.

You are beautiful.