Monday, February 18, 2013

Pieces of Beauty Series: Society VS The Bible

To start this series off I want to discuss the meaning behind beauty and the different types of beauty in the world today.

Beauty is defined by Merriam-Webster as the following:

1: the quality or aggregate of qualities in a person or thing that gives pleasure to the senses or pleasurably exalts the mind or spirit : loveliness
2: a beautiful person or thing; especially : a beautiful woman
3: a particularly graceful, ornamental, or excellent quality
4: a brilliant, extreme, or egregious example or instance <that mistake was a beauty>

These definitions are all about worldly beauty, your appearance. They mainly focus on the beauty of a woman. This could mean her hair, facial features, body size, certain parts of her body, or how she carries herself. Magazines, television, music, books, internet, etc. all point to beauty in a woman on her outward appearance. They all give false representations on beauty and send the wrong message to girls and woman alike. If two women go to a modeling agency, one woman is your typical blonde bombshell, tall, slender, has amazing facial features, a tan, and an outfit that accentuates that. The other woman is a bit heavier, more curvy, has the same good looks however she is just a bigger size, chances are the smaller woman will get the gig because it is what society believes is beautiful.

Almost all magazines today show a half naked woman on them, show lingerie, talk about the “best” things to do s*xually, how to get bigger lips, a better smile, the nicer hair, pricey cosmetics, and the skimpiest clothing. Speaking of that I was looking at a magazine over the weekend that was stating one of the big trends for spring are outfits that show the mid-drift. Now I don’t know about you but that to me is not acceptable. I wouldn’t be caught dead in that type of outfit, it’s not tasteful, it’s skimpy. Another section was showing what men “like” to see women in, again not tasteful.

Now, lets see what the Bible states is beauty.

Psalm 139:14
I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well.

What it means:  You were created just like everyone else, in the image of God. He carefully molds you into the person you are, he creates your eyes, smile, body shape, hair, skin tone, and everything down to your toes. He knows exactly how tall you are, how much you weigh, the texture of every single strand of hair on you head {see Luke 12:7}…You are beautiful because He created you to look exactly like Him. Nothing could be more beautiful then looking like your heavenly father. Its amazing to think He takes the time to created each one of us!

1 Samuel 16:7
But the LORD said to Samuel, "Do not consider his appearance or his height, for I have rejected him. The LORD does not look at the things man looks at. Man looks at the outward appearance, but the LORD looks at the heart."

What it means: As I mentioned before society defines what is beautiful on the outside, however the most beautiful thing to God is what you look like on the inside. He only cares about the beauty in your heart. I don’t believe anywhere in the Bible God discusses which lip shade is the most beautiful, or what hairstyle or outfit you should be wearing today, He doesn’t care. He is only concerned with the image of your heart. If you spend more time getting ready and putting on makeup and picking outfits then you do in prayer, talking with God, or reading your Bible then you may need to figure out the matter of your heart, and find out what is more important to you, what you look like to society or what you look like to your Father?!

Proverbs 31:30
Charm is deceptive, and beauty is fleeting; but a woman who fears the LORD is to be praised.

What it means: Did you know that your body starts aging as early as age 20?! You may start seeing stray gray hairs, a few fine lines, some wrinkles even, hair loss, difference in your weight, etc. If you are so concerned about your appearance to society then when you start the aging process you will be very unhappy with the changes. The women who age naturally and gracefully are some of the most beautiful women in older age, their love and kindness show strongly through their eyes and actions. Another way of looking at is if you stand two girls next to each other and one is Miss USA whose beauty is limited to physical beauty, and the other young lady is a more average-looking girl who loves the Lord more than anything, she is the more beautiful girl in the eyes of God, because of the simple fact she doesn’t spend all her time looking in the mirror wanting to be the fairest of them all, she actually takes the time to talk with God, spends time in prayer, and she reads her Bible. Her heart is purely His and it shows from within her to everyone else she meets.

1 Peter 3:3-4
Your beauty should not come from outward adornment, such as braided hair and the wearing of gold jewelry and fine clothes. Instead, it should be that of your inner self, the unfading beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit, which is of great worth in God's sight.

What it means: What this verse means is that woman should spend more time working on their beauty that will last forever, the beauty of the heart. The verse was written when Egyptian women would spend hours upon hours decorating their faces, finding the right jewelry and outfit. Sounds like many women and girls today huh?! When I was in middle school some years ago now, my best friend at the time would get so mad at me because everyone liked me. She didn’t understand how I made friends so easily and actually kept them. I remember one day at lunch she sat and balled her eyes out and when I asked why she was so upset she just replied “Because you are so much prettier than me, and everyone likes you”. That friend would also spend her nights playing with her hair and she wore some heavy makeup to be only 13. That episode has stuck with me over the years and I often replay it in my mind wondering who this friend became, we parted ways in high school like many people do, but I still wonder about her sometimes. I would say everyone liked me because I was easy to get along with, I didn’t try to fit into a particular crowd and I wasn’t one to care about the weekends much, I would have rather hung out with my family then go shopping at the mall. I wore very light makeup, never really cared much about what I wore to degree; I wore skirts and tee’s most days. My beauty came from within, not from the outside. That same friend was not the nicest person, and she cared so much about what others thought of her and how she looked on the outside, she would try and flaunt things at the age of 13 that she shouldn’t be, and people liked her, it was just for the wrong reasons.

1 Timothy 4:8
Physical exercise has some value, but spiritual exercise is much more important, for it promises a reward in both this life and the next.

What it means: Spiritual exercise is very much needed by everyone. Yes we should take care of our bodies, however we also have to take care of ourselves on the spiritual level as well. God wants us to care about our inner beauty not the way we look on the outside. We are born into one fleshy body for our life on earth, we must take care of it, however my jeans being a size2 is not going to get me through the pearly gates to spend eternity with Jesus, my heart will. Take the time to work on yourself spiritually and I bet you will notice a difference in how you carry yourself and what matters most to you.

I urge you to take some time alone with God today, spend some time talking to Him about beauty and let Him show you what matters most to Him. We are only here on earth for a short time and the way we look physically will not cross you over to spend eternity with Him. God will not talk about the brand of clothes or cosmetics you wear, He isn’t interested in how many times you worked out, but He does care about your inner beauty. If you’re beautiful on the inside it will cross to the outside. I would rather talk to someone who is down to earth rather than the girl on the magazine cover who showed half her body if not all, and knew nothing of the Lord.

What matters more to you, the beauty of society or the beauty of the Lord?

Disclaimer: All photographs on this blog are that of my own unless otherwise stated; photographs that are not mine will be linked to the source I got them from. Please do not take any of my photographs without my written permission. Thank you!

1 comment:

  1. I like this post a lot! We tend to forget that we are made in God's image and that to Him we are all beautiful.

    Bestie-you are beautiful INSIDE and OUT! Love you:)


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