There was a man who had four daughters. Each of them was beautiful and talented, but the youngest of them felt shadowed by her elder sisters. She thought herself to be the ugliest and least talented amongst them. A few kind-hearted people tried telling her that she was only ugly because she saw herself as that, but the girl refused to listen.
In the village where they lived, tradition had it that when a young man was seeking for the hand of the girl he wished to marry, he had to present a cow to her father as a bridal price.
By and by, one after the other, the three older girls found themselves being won over by suitors who each presented one cow to their father. The youngest of them all, however, was left behind. No young man stepped forward to claim her as his bride. The girl knew that no one ever would so she gave up wishing and dreaming.
One day, a young man approached her father and asked for the hand in marriage of the youngest girl. The father was skeptical. He knew how everyone saw his youngest daughter. To make sure that the young man was true to his words, the father demanded a cow for his daughter, after the tradition.
Without hesitation, the young man presented to the girl's father, not just one cow, but five cows. The best, the plumpest cows on earth. Apparently, this young man saw past the girl's physical features, and into the beauty of her heart.
Pretty sweet, hmm?
I think that's how God wants us to view ourselves. Most of the time, we tend to look at our outward appearance. We look at other girls, other people, and focus on what we don't have instead of what we have.
God, however, is more concerned with the beauty that comes from within.
It's a reminder for us that no matter how other people see us, and not matter how we see ourselves, God thinks a lot about us and He loves us for who He made us to be. In His eyes, we're 5-cow women. Perhaps even more than that.
"...for the Lord seeth not as man seeth; for man looketh on the outward appearance, but the Lord looketh on the heart."
~ 1 Samuel 16:7