As I was flipping through the channels on TV, a certain scene caught my eye. It was a beach scene, with guys and girls dancing and laughing and doing “the twist.” The movie was made during the 1950’s and the girls in their bathing suits were built a lot like me. Their bodies were milky white. They had wide hips, small breasts, and were a little soft around the middle. They looked as if they varied between a size 4 to a size 10 and none of them were shaped the same. I was in awe of how much the image of perfection in women’s bodies has changed in the past 70 years.
Fast forward to today, and the gals depicted in the beach scene would be laughed off the set if they dared to try out for a beach scene part. To be “noticed” these days, women are pressured to be tanned, toned, and a size zero. Women implant silicone in their breasts to be so full and perfectly round as to defy gravity. Showbiz makes girls feel as if everybody looks this way and that they should too. Models and actresses are airbrushed down before shoots or shows, and then airbrushed out a little more for the pictures and advertisements. (See here for the truth behind photo editing). The expectations that this image places upon girls as young as 4 is mindboggling.
WAKE UP GIRLS! Are we, being God’s children, going to allow our minds and our bodies to be subjected to this nonsense? Now, more than ever before, the pressure is on to succeed by being beautiful, because beautiful gets the guy. Beautiful gets the job. Beautiful gets the friends. Beautiful gets you noticed. But how are you defining beautiful? Are you allowing society to define it for you, or are you turning to the Truth to define beautiful? Listed below are scriptures that we as young women need to engrave upon our hearts as we battle the need to fit the worldly mold of beauty. Retailers and marketers hope you can’t attain the Bible’s level of confidence, and their campaigns target our weaknesses. I can tell you that as a 28-year-old wife and mom, I find myself in the midst of this battle now more than ever. Having three kiddos has forever changed my body, and the battle to submit to poor self-esteem is still raging. Take heart in these passages, as I do.
- Ecclesiastes 3:11 “He has made everything beautiful in its time.”
Yes, this means you too!
- Psalm 139:14 “I praise you, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made. Wonderful are your works; my soul knows it very well.”
Have you ever thanked God for making you who you are? Have you ever considered that harping on your weaknesses is an insult to your Maker?
- 1 Peter 3:3-4 “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.”
The beauty of your faithful soul is everlasting.
- Proverbs 31:30 “Charm is deceitful, and beauty is vain, but a woman who fears the LORD is to be praised.”
Are you vain?
- Proverbs 16:3 “Commit your works to the Lord, and your thoughts will be established. Where your mind is, your heart will be there also.”
Are you committing your time to the works of the Lord, or spending hours in the gym on your vanity?
- Ephesians 5:25-27 “Husbands, love your wives, as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her, that he might sanctify her, having cleansed her by the washing of water with the word, so that he might present the church to himself in splendor, without spot or wrinkle or any such thing, that she might be holy and without blemish.”
This passage is about the husband-wife relationship, compared to Christ and his Church. Being a Christian, you are the daughter of God, and the bride of Christ. Notice the descriptions of the bride of Christ, without spot, wrinkle, or blemish, sanctified, and holy. Christ is speaking about you! Doesn’t this passage make you feel beautiful and happy to serve Jesus, who gave his life to make you become this way? Are you keeping this relationship pure?
My best advice to you would be to be the best YOU. Take care of your body with exercise and healthy eating, not just to look good, but to be healthy. Accept who you are and embrace those wonderful features that your God gave you, and cultivate the talents He bestowed upon you to be a fruitful worker for Him. We are most beautiful, when Christ is working within us, renewing and transforming our hearts for his purpose.