Five Things God Showed Me Through a Skincare Routine

Ishnita Nayantara Keskar   |   March 14, 2023 

I was the ‘soap and water girl’ but much to my dismay, a year ago due to some skin allergies I had to start paying attention to my face cleansing process. In a turn of events, the doctor and a friend suggested that I follow a skincare routine and use certain products. I must be honest that I was absolutely against the idea, but then my friend said I should try it for a few months, see the difference, and then decide. So, I did!

I ordered the required products and started with a morning and night routine: face wash, toner, serum, sunscreen lotion, and something similar for the night. The first few weeks seemed pointless and cumbersome because I had to consciously plan and place the routine. However, with the hope to see the results, I stuck to it. I plugged it into a routine, and I followed it. I knew there was one thing I needed: consistency.

After a month, my husband and my friend said they could see a difference but I really could not. Nevertheless, I continued the routine because I wanted to focus on consistency and skipping it made me uncomfortable. Six months down the line, I can now see a difference but not as much as I would have liked. I have read quite a bit about the usefulness of doing what I am doing, and I am hoping in the years to come I will be able to look back and be glad I chose to be consistent with this routine.

The most amazing part of this whole experience is how the Lord has used the build toward consistency in my skincare routine to reveal the importance of daily meditation on the Word. I struggle with consistency in my daily devotions and often after a week or month of daily meditation, I lose track and slide into days or weeks of not reading or praying. But while I was trying to build consistency with my skincare, I knew God was revealing certain things about my time with the Word of God and prayer. So here are some of the points God was teaching me through this experience.

1. Slot in a time and routine

When no specific time is clocked in for God’s word, it is so easy to skip it. But when you clock in a time or schedule, it becomes easier to follow it. For my skin routine too, I knew it was fixed with my morning bath and before I get into bed at night, so compared to other incomplete projects, this was easier to follow. When we do not know when we are supposed to sit down and read the Word and pray, it becomes easier to skip it and let other work get in the way. Setting aside time as a conscious part of your routine will make room and time to sit with the Lord without being interrupted by other work.

2. There are no shortcuts to building a loving relationship

Building a robust routine to sit with the Lord in prayer and meditation is not something that can be done in a day. This is something one can only build over years and years. Sitting together with the Lord daily is not a ritual that needs to be finished like a checklist, rather it is an expression of our love and commitment to Him and expressive of our constant need for Him. Skincare experts suggest that we should wear sunscreen on our skin several times a day to protect ourselves from the harshness of the sun. Living in a world where so much is not about the Lord, how much more would we need to soak ourselves in the Word to face its harshness?

3. The change will not go unnoticed

When my husband told me that my skin had improved, I was so excited. I couldn’t see it myself, but I was excited that the effort was paying off. Similarly, a few years ago, I remember my friend from college times commenting that I had changed since college, that I had become more spiritual. I had felt a greater surge of excitement and encouragement. When we are in a growing relationship with the Lord, without a doubt others will see it as well. When we truly live by the Word and the Spirit, it will reflect in and through us. If people can notice weight loss and improvement in our skin when they see us, it is even more necessary that they see Christ living in us (Gal 2:20, Rom 12:2, Phil 1:6). Years and years of a relationship with Jesus should not be like a secret love affair. The fullness of the Word and the work of the Spirit will shine through our lives to all around us. It is the proof of God’s work in us (Matt 5:14-16).

4. The joy along the way

Initially, when I started with the skincare routine, I was only working towards the results. While the results are important and indicative of the success of the process, I also began to enjoy the process itself. The ritual brings joy and is a reminder to me that every little step adds to the goal. Our Christian life is not just aimed at reaching heaven. The journey of sanctification, reformation and transformation are the little things that add along the way. This journey makes us more like Christ and helps us grow in our faith. The daily reading of the word, the soaking in prayer and fellowship with our brothers and sisters, all these are the small steps that not only add to the joy of growing in faith but are also indicative of our relationship with the Lord.

5. Becoming Christlike

My sister sent me an old picture of us from our school days last week. I looked at myself in the picture and realised that no matter what skincare routine I undertook, I could never look like how I did in school or college or even five years ago. My hair is beginning to grey and I can colour it but I cannot undo the greying process. I can slow down the wrinkles, but they will eventually show up. The good news is that growing in the Lord is nothing like this. As David Mathis writes,

Though seemingly normal and routine, the everyday “habits of grace” we cultivate give us access to these God-designed channels through which his love and power flow — including the greatest joy of all: knowing and enjoying Jesus.”

Even as I write this post, I must mention that my disciplines with the Word are not all sorted out. It is an ongoing process with a few steps forward and a few steps behind. But God in all His grace and mercy has not left me and has even used my skincare routine to remind me of my need for Him and His Word. The greater news is that I don’t have to rely on ever-changing beauty products and advice for better skin. Instead, for my body, mind, and soul I have the eternal Helper, the Holy Spirit, to help me transform (2 Cor 4:16, 3:18) into the image of Christ with His ever-increasing glory. Now that revelation, through a skincare routine was the best part of the whole deal!

 

Photo by Content Pixie on Unsplash

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Ishnita Nayantara Keskar

Ishnita Nayantara Keskar is a mother of two and currently lives with her husband and children in Bhopal. She is pursuing her PhD in the Psychology of Education from Jawaharlal University, Delhi. She loves writing, travelling, driving and watching movies.

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