I bet you think this post is about clothes, don’t you?
Well, you’re not too far off. It’s no secret that I love dressing up. As a once shy girl, I allowed what I wore to speak for me. Developing my personal style was my key to standing out. And while I didn’t major in fashion like I thought I would, I still revel at designs coming alive, putting on my favorite fabrics and the joyous anticipation I feel when I walk out the door to conquer my day.
My brand, Adorned in Armor, was partially birthed through my appreciation of fashion. It was and still is my goal to demonstrate how embracing fashion isn’t vain. That God can use even the most glamorous industries for His glory. That you can do amazing things and feel great about yourself while doing it. That you can indeed carry yourself with dignity, respect and boldness like the royal you are.
With “dressed for battle” being the tagline of Adorned in Armor, Ephesians 6 has been my mission – to equip you with the weapons to live victorious lives and to do so, fabulously. (That last bit is me and not the Word :))
I have been demonstrating just that (everything I mentioned above, that is). I marvel at the woman I am today and it is important that this repurposed space is a reflection of the glory being accomplished within me.
Some of you have watched me grow up through this digital space. You have seen me graduating with honors from both college and graduate school, you have seen me win pageants and land book deals and brand campaigns, you have seen me go from traveling with Teen Vogue to working for myself. But you have also seen me share tear-soaked words, hard truths, blatant transparency and some suffering. You have seen me grow in faith, you have seen me learning to love God more and more through it all.
But you haven’t seen the side that’s coming. In fact, I haven’t either!
At the beginning of this year, it was revealed to me that my secret weapon is love…except it’s not so secret because you can see it not only in me, but on me.
In the past few months, I’ve not only embraced a spiritual rebrand, I’ve had to be reintroduced to who I am. I’ve had to dig deep and consider the ways in which love shows up in my ministry, work, family, my life, my world. I’ve learned to look forward to fully uncovering myself as time and experience reveals her day after day.
Even with the ugly parts, it’s been the most beautiful thing. And while Ephesians 6 is my brand’s key verse, I now have a personal life passage that speaks exactly to who I am.
The Message version of Colossians 12-14 says, “So, chosen by God for this new life of love, dress in the wardrobe God picked out for you: compassion, kindness, humility, quiet strength, discipline. Be even-tempered, content with second place, quick to forgive an offense. Forgive as quickly and completely as the Master forgave you. And regardless of what else you put on, wear love. It’s your basic, all-purpose garment. Never be without it.”
I’ve read that passage hundreds of times before but coming across it at this certain point of my life (and in that translation) made me feel so seen. It reminded me that even the fashionable part of me was fashioned for this one passage.
Love is my basic, all-purpose garment. It will be in style in every season.
Love is my basic, all-purpose garment. It will be in style in every season. Click To Tweet
This passage pointed out to me that even Adorned in Armor was aligned for such a time as this. While I’ve taught how to get dressed for battle for years, this passage shows me wars can be won with love, too.
It reminds me of how to live with people. Clothing myself in love binds us all together in perfect harmony.
I can live love because I already am. The Passion Translation of this passage says: “You are always and dearly loved by God! So robe yourself with virtues of God, since you have been divinely chosen to be holy…For love is supreme and must flow through each of these virtues. Love becomes the mark of true maturity.”
As someone who used to choose faith because of fear, it soothes my soul to be reminded that I am dearly loved by my Creator. Love is in me because I reflect my Father.
Like any one who has the honor of breath in their lungs, I know I still have some growing up to do. I commit myself to the process. I live to clothe myself with an adornment that is not only external – it is hidden in my heart.
I am Tarah-Lynn and who I am is adorned. Adorned with compassion, a quiet strength, adorned with love. May this place be one that inspires you to know that true adornment is to put on love above all else.