“Your adornment must not be merely external– braiding the hair, and wearing gold jewelry, or putting on dresses; but let it be the hidden person of the heart, with the imperishable quality of a gentle and quiet spirit, which is precious in the sight of God.”
[ 1 Peter 3:3-4 ]
So, what does God’s word say about beauty? How is beauty meant to be defined? This takes us back to 1 Peter 3:3-4.
Thankfully, God understands that a girl’s got needs. I love getting dressed up once in awhile, doing my hair/makeup and wearing a cute outfit. And in moderation, that is not a bad thing at all! God’s word says: “do not let your beauty merely outward.” As in, do not let your sole focus be external, because one day that beauty will fade. But most importantly, let it “be the hidden person of the heart with the imperishable beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit, which is precious in the sight of God.”
So, we have that which is passing versus the imperishable.
This is huge, because it reminds us that although we are meant to take good care of ourselves on the outside, we are meant to exceed those efforts to make sure we are beautiful on the inside. And inner beauty could never be filtered or edited in the sight of God. The condition of your heart is plainly exposed in His sight. Which speaks volumes of how great He really is for loving us regardless of this truth. You know the worst parts of your heart, and I know the worst parts of mine. You know the things that you wish, hope and pray people will never see or know about you. I have the same. There is great vulnerability in acknowledging that God sees those parts of our hearts and is still able to love and desire a relationship with us.
Something that I have been learning and realizing a lot lately is that the ability to remain meek in circumstances where you have been wronged, reveals great strength and dignity; it is simply beautiful. This characteristic can be called gentleness (which is beautiful in His sight). Jesus demonstrated this when He stood in front of His murderers. He, God, stood in front of Pilot, a man, who believed that he had the power to kill Jesus. And even though Jesus could have rightfully struck this man down right then in a blink of an eye along with his soldiers, He demonstrated gentleness, humility, strength and love as He remained silent. And by doing so, His character is so plainly revealed to us. He would rather selflessly humble Himself before man, endure the shame and pain, and wait patiently for His time of glory in order to save someone like you and me. How beautiful it that?
You know, it’s obvious when you come across a beautiful person. A truly beautiful being. They have a heart of gold that could not be compared to any physical beauty out there. Their value is evident, not because of their looks (which are so fleeting), but by their character which speaks volumes of the love, selflessness, care, gentleness and integrity that is ingrained in them. And why are these people so beautiful? Because they carry characteristics of the Lord. He is our great example. You want to be beautiful? Look to, learn from, follow, know HIM. I promise the more time you spend with Him, the more you will begin to inherit His good looks.
LOVE, JOY, PEACE, PATIENCE, KINDNESS, GOODNESS, GENTLENESS, FAITHFULNESS, SELF-CONTROL.
These characteristics are from the Lord. This is what truly makes a person beautiful. People who carry this kind of beauty, they stand out. They positively impact and bless people around them just by being themselves. How crazy is that to think about? The beauty that they carry with them is so rare and valuable that it makes others look to them as something special. And ironically, all this good comes from the Lord. It has everything to do with Him and not a whole lot to do with us.
So when it comes down to it, what kind of beauty should we be seeking? What truly matters? As for me, I am so attracted to people who selflessly love others. And I’m not going to lie, I have some pretty amazing friends in my life. I truly feel blessed by them. God’s love shines through them in a way that brings peace to my soul to even be close with them. They are beautiful to me. I see their value. These people are willing to pray, speak life, encourage, rebuke, help and have a good time. Those are my kind of beautiful people. And they make me want to grow more beautiful too. And in order to do that, I must first look to the Lord to purify my heart in order to make it beautiful.
So, although we each have our own subjective opinion of what external beauty looks like, which we are so free to desire, we must never forget that inner beauty comes from the Lord. We must look to Him… desiring His beauty first in order to even recognize what true beauty really looks like. And we seek that out by getting into His word and learning more about Him, His character and how much He truly loves us by His actions. When desiring to be beautiful, look to Him who is the definition of it.
Our challenge is this:
to challenge our own perception of beauty by broadening the scope of our perspective to fully see where the value lies, and to seek Jesus as the source and supplier of that beauty. ♥