Tamar had been hiding her beauty while wearing her widow’s outfit. I wonder if she had determined in her heart to be content accommodating others while suppressing what she needed and wanted, like most Romantics do. I bet she made her father’s home a beautiful, comfortable place with all the details of lace, flowers, candles and music to make everyone feel at home while she was there waiting for her promised husband. Romantics have a gift for comforting others. Some people may assume they are foolish because they can be manipulated into taking care of everyone else while neglecting themselves, but drive this girl too far and she will take care of herself, alright!
Tamar used one of her great assets—her figure—to go find what she needed: love and acceptance.
We all have that temptation as women, but it seems to me that just as the Romantic tends to feel compassion for others more deeply, she also feels her own emotions more deeply. Her vulnerability is part of what makes her so beautiful, but vulnerability is the thing she hates. She puts great emphasis on creating atmosphere, and has a very practical mind, but she seldom considers that her attitude toward herself can make others uncomfortable around her.
People are drawn to that which is authentic. It is hard to draw near to someone who is disrespecting herself even if she is showing you great love and respect.
One way Romantics can disrespect themselves is by flaunting their bodies. Our culture encourages it. They say, “If you’ve got it, flaunt it.” Romantics may dress in a way that makes them come across as proud of their curves while at the same time speaking body language that says they are ashamed of themselves (especially if their figure includes rolls of extra curves). Whenever someone’s actions say one thing and their attitude says another they may have a hard being trusted.
I believe Tamar was in that state of double-mindedness when she set out to meet her father-in-law. She was hiding from him, but she was teasing him with her availability. She had probably vowed to never need him, yet she was desperate to use him.
It is not uncommon that the see-saw the Romantic rides is with her weight. She may purposely or subconsciously put on weight to disuse her bosom with a belly, only to find her breasts and bottom are the main places she gains. So she tries to gain control by losing it all with diet and workouts, yet no matter how hard she tries, she just can’t lose the pounds in the right spots.
Very often, in her efforts to gain control of her body, this woman ends up with an eating disorder that controls her. Or she may hide her figure in baggy sweatshirts and oversized clothes that only make her look dumpy. Why? Because, she has found that she is safest if others don’t look at her! Besides, she would rather be busy taking care of others!
She may ride that emotional see-saw all her life unless she gives her frustrations to the One who created her.
Tamar must have shared her frustrations with God, because He blessed her abundantly. She not only became pregnant by her father-in-law, but with the birth of her twin sons, Tamar becomes part of the lineage of Jesus Christ. (Matthew 1:1-5) What a powerful witness to the faithfulness of God even in the midst of man’s abuse and neglect.
If you are a Romantic, you work hard to make others to feel comfortable in your home or wherever you are; decide to make them comfortable around your image, too. That will only happen when you become comfortable with yourself.
Catrina Welch is an image- and life-coach whose message is not as much “what not to wear” as it is, “Know Who You Are,” which is the title of her book of guidelines for your personal image identity. Catrina has also written a Bible study to help women overcome their confidence conflicts; it is titled Supreme MakeOver: a Rich and Refreshing Devotional Experience. Her other books include Footprints Through the Sand: a Consolidation of Life-altering stories about Loving and Losing a Trisomy-18 Baby and Confident Beauty: Reflecting the One Who Made You with the Images in Your Mirror and Your Soul, which will be available in book stores this spring. All of these books are available now at www.CatrinaWelch.com
If you are interested in having Catrina come speak to your friends, colleagues or ministry you can contact her on facebook or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.