B is for ... Beauty

I’ve struggled most of my adult life to feel attractive and the older I’ve become the more intense the struggle. I thought I was alone in my struggle. After all, I look around and see many beautiful women my age who seem to exude confidence along with their stunning beauty.

But recent conversations online and in real life have led me to believe that there’s more to this than I realised. Women whom I admire as having it all together (you know the ones I’m talking about: gorgeous on the outside as well as the inside) admit that they feel unattractive. When I express my surprise, they admit to feelings and thoughts similar to my own. Even more amazing is that some of them look at me and have the same thoughts I have about them.

There’s something wrong here (and I'm not referring to the fact that they obviously need glasses). Why is it that so many women fail to see their own beauty? Why do we want to look like someone else whom we think is far more beautiful than ourselves? Can we blame Eve for this? She looked at the fruit and saw that it was pleasing to the eye and ever since we’ve been looking at what we can’t have and feeling dissatisfied with what we do have.

Some of the Bible stories that many of us have grown up on seem to further foster our feelings of unattractiveness. Take Sarah for example. Sarah who was taken into a foreign king’s court. Just think about this for a moment: this king could have had any of the young girls in the kingdom but he chose – by my calculations - a middle-aged woman! Now I don’t want to be in Sarah’s predicament, but she must have been incredibly beautiful to catch the king’s eye over all the young maidens.

And then there’s Esther. She was treated to twelve months of beauty treatments. Can you imagine what that must have been like? Twelve months! One whole year! Me, I can’t even find time to pluck my eyebrows, let alone bathe in goat’s milk or soak my feet in honey or paint my nails with henna, or whatever form such beauty treatments would have taken. It would seem that I’m doomed then. Along with every other woman who feels as I do.

But there is a solution. It’s not for the faint-hearted. It will require a longer investment of time than just an hour or two in the beauty salon. But it’s a permanent solution and one that will cause beauty to increase over time rather than decrease with age.

What is it? Simply, it can be found in the advice of 1 Peter 3:3-6:

Do not let your adornment be merely outward—arranging the hair, wearing gold, or putting on fine apparel— rather let it be the hidden person of the heart, with the incorruptible beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit, which is very precious in the sight of God. For in this manner, in former times, the holy women who trusted in God also adorned themselves, being submissive to their own husbands, as Sarah obeyed Abraham, calling him lord, whose daughters you are if you do good and are not afraid with any terror. (NKJV)

Comments

SchnauzerMom said…
I'm glad that the Lord looks on the inside instead of the outside.
Debora said…
Jules, this is a great post--thank you. I think you're beautiful, both inside and outside. Your heart shines through, indeed, and your face is darling and also radiant with Christ's love. I hope to shine that way, too.

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