Ok, so it’s been forever! Or at least it feels that way. I wanted to touch base with you guys before I went right into the journal entry so I can fill you in on all that has been going on with ya girl and why I’ve been so MIA. So, I recently moved and I’ve settled into my new job! I’m loving both. …so I have been ridiculously busy these past two months. But, as things settle down now, I will actually have even more opportunity to spend time with you guys.
But, in addition to that, I have to honest with you all and share something that I have been really considering lately. As I have mentioned on my site, I am not claiming to be this super theologian or even this amazing, professional blogger. On the contrary, I consider myself to be an ordinary young woman who loves the Lord and wants to share what God has been teaching me. My goal is to share, remind, encourage and inspire. But, lately I have been questioning whether or not I am crazy for believing that is what I am even supposed to be doing! Don’t get me wrong, I love to read, write (and journal), but I feel that there are SO many other more qualified writers, speakers and bloggers out there. And every time I fight God on this, someone reaches out to me and encourages me to keep going. They don’t even know me or what I have been battling, but it is always perfect timing… I want to take a moment to THANK (from the bottom of my heart) those of you who continue to reach out to me via email, Instagram, through comments, and even in person about the blog so far. When I first started, I promised myself that I would continue writing even if only one person was encouraged. So, even though I had a weak couple of months, God got me through it, and He used a lot of you to do it. I am very excited for this new season! I have a couple new things coming soon that I think the ladies will enjoy. 🙂 Ok, so back to the journal entry. This is a topic that I am very passionate about so read below!
“Do not let your adorning be external—the braiding of hair and the putting on of gold jewelry, or the clothing you wear— but let your adorning be the hidden person of the heart with the imperishable beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit, which in God’s sight is very precious.”
1 P e t e r 3 : 3 – 4
So one thing I should start off by mentioning is that these verses are pulled from a part of scripture that was written by Peter, addressing the true beauty of a godly wife in relation to her husband and her appearance. And although a lot of us are not yet married, it is important for us to prepare for marriage beforehand. It would be unwise to assume we will automatically inherit important characteristics of a godly wife the morning of our wedding day! Peter emphasizes beauty in these verses. So I pulled the modern definition of the word from dictionary.com.
a combination of qualities, such as shape, color, or form, that pleases the aesthetic senses, especially the sight.“I was struck by her beauty”
This is a pretty basic definition that all of us already know. And anyone who knows me could tell you that I have a problem with thinking every woman I see is “so beautiful!” I can look at any girl and see a uniqueness about them that makes them gorgeous in my mind. It really is an issue, because I tend to stare a little too long! Ha, they probably think I’m staring them down, but little do they know I just think they are pretty. But, of course this is exclusively external as I do not know each woman I see on a personal level. There are externally beautiful men and women everywhere, but it is very important for us as believers to redefine what true beauty looks like.
So, what is it that you lean on as a source of your beauty? In other words, what do you pursue, alter or focus on in order to appear more attractive to others? Body, hair, makeup, relationships, intelligence, personality, career, clothes, status, skills and hobbies just to name a few.
Today I am going to focus on the pursuit of physical beauty. Let’s be honest, we all do little things to enhance beauty in some way or another. But, we must question if it is wise to completely lean on these sources as our main source of beauty. For example, I love to workout, but I’m not one of those girls that has this naturally thin/fit figure, I have to work for it! So I am unable to lean on my body as a unchanging source of beauty (and these cultural weight trends change all the time anyway!). Weight is a thing too inconsistent for me to put all my eggs in that basket!
Remember: physical beauty is completely subjective.
You may be extremely attractive in a persons eyes, and not so much in the eyes of another. And that is OK. We get in trouble when we feel the need to seek out the approval and eyes of every man (or woman) in the room. If for some reason we are not getting that attention, we start to feel insecure and feel the need to change something about ourselves to appear more beautiful or attractive. This can also lead to letting go of our values in order to gain that attention. There is absolutely nothing wrong with desiring to be beautiful, but when it becomes an idol in our hearts, then we need to be prepared for the chaos that comes from that sin. This is why Paul emphasizes the importance of inner beauty.
Have you ever come across a guy with wandering eyes? Wandering eyes can’t help but scan the room to find the most beautiful girl, or stare at every female that walks into the door? They lack self-control and lust after any beautiful woman that walks by. You catch him staring at you and at first you may even feel flattered, but then you catch him doing the same thing to every other pretty girl that walks in. Instead of feeling beautiful, special, or wanted you end up feeling like an object, devalued and insecure. You may even catch yourself comparing yourself to the other girls in the room. But, don’t take the bait. I can tell you that there will ALWAYS be a physically beautiful woman/man near. They are everywhere! And as women, we need not feel threatened by that truth or even by the man that can’t stop staring at other girls. If a man struggles with wandering eyes, then that is HIS struggle and it is apart from you (it doesn’t have to do with your worth), and it just means you need to keep on moving girlfriend, because that’s not an issue you want to deal with. A man with wandering eyes is a man with unsatisfied eyes. And people who are constantly unsatisfied with what they see struggle with being unfaithful, but that has has nothing to do with whether or not you were pretty enough. My mama told me something when I was younger that I will never forget. She told me that even the most beautiful women in the world get cheated on. Physical beauty is not security. Beauty trends change all the time and this competitive nature to keep up with the changes can easily distract us from what is most important.
So, one of my favorite artists Andy Mineo has a song called Shallow (go listen to it right after this, it’s so good!) and he shares a man’s perspective of struggling through this issue. And there is a part of the song that I’m obsessed with it, because it is SO true! He says, “this ain’t no beauty contest, when you play that game, then somebody’s always got next.” AMEN. If you’re looking to simply find the most beautiful husband/wife, there will always be another. You will habitually continue to seek the next. And if this is a struggle of yours, then it’s time to pray and repent from this, because you will not only continue to hurt your own heart, but the people that are disposable to you. The Lord reveals in His word what is most important:
“Charm is deceitful and beauty is fleeting, but a woman who fears the Lord, she shall be praised.” Proverbs 31:10
And if you have fallen victim to lust disguised as flattery, it’s time to renew your mind as well. It doesn’t matter if he is handsome or even a christian. Never convince yourself that the man lusting after you is valuing your beauty. He is simply using it as a source to fuel his lustful thoughts.
THE TRUTH ABOUT PHYSICAL BEAUTY
He desires for all of us to see ourselves through His lens. How incredible would that be? To see ourselves as our Heavenly Father sees us? We would be able to see how beautiful we are without all the enhancements and filters. If were were able to see ourselves the way He does, we wouldn’t fall into the deception of having to jump through all these cultural hoops to stay beautiful and relevant. We definitely would not be settling for any foul play by others. And not only that, we would be able to see the beauty of others.
Ok, so here is a secret: Beauty is a gift. And any gift from the Lord is to be used as an opportunity to show others the love of God. And we are all beautiful in our own way. God created fearfully and wonderfully made sons and daughters. It is when we allow the desire for external beauty to take precedence over what’s going on the inside is when our gift quickly becomes our curse. Just a reminder, the devil was once the most beautiful angel in Heaven. Renew your mind of what God wants you to do with your beauty. When you change your perspective, you will see your beauty as a responsibility and opportunity to show people that your true beauty in not merely external, but internal and that it’s 100% because of the Lord shaping and molding your heart. Your physical beauty was always meant to give the glory back to God. And considering this journal entry got pretty lengthy pretty quick, I am going to break this one in two. I will break down inner beauty in my next entry!