Women are more plastic these days than anorexic mannequins. We’ve been inundated with beastly conceptions of “beauty.” It starts, tragically, when we are little girls playing with completely disproportionate Barbie dolls who’d have to crawl on all fours to bear the weight of their oversized bosoms. We can’t even go grocery shopping without being accosted by magazine covers implying our eyebrows are too thick, as are our waists, not to mention the frequency of supposedly bad hair days.
The beast of this world demands exterior aesthetics and thusly provides us with a vast array of cosmetics: paint to hide the years peeled off by wrinkles, gloss to sting and thereby plump up our lips (namely because the fiery chemicals therein cause them to swell with irritation), concealor to hide well-earned dark circles, blush to give us a clown-like rosy color and eye shadow in colors that remind us of Mimi (from the Drew Carey show). This is of course having left out the fibrous compilations they call mascara which if used, we’re lucky they don’t accidentally scrape our corneas. It’s amazing that the world focuses so much on the whitewash while claiming to enhance “natural” beauty. They’re looking at a façade, a made-up fallacy, unrealistic coatings, and labeling it “beauty.” Actually, it seems to make the utmost sense when considered from a Spiritual perspective because, quite frankly, the beast of this world loves a lie. He whole-cold-heartedly embraces keratin, silicone and botox and negates the attributes given us by the Creator.
So, now that we’ve met the beast part of this piece, let us move on to what is truly beautiful in the eyes of the Most High God who created us for His good pleasure. Perhaps we must first understand that Proverbs 31:30 tells us that beauty is vain. This of course refers to exterior beauty and if you’ve any years on you at all, the wrinkles, rolls and varicose veins can testify to that truth. So, if this shell is not the focus, unless of course we align ourselves with the beast, where then is true beauty found and what does Scripture tell us it looks like?
An interesting point that should be made here is that Isaiah, when prophesying about the coming of Christ purposely tells us that He didn’t have a majestic physique or extraordinary physical attractiveness that would make us desire Him (Isaiah 53:2). In believing the whole of Scripture we must understand that every Word, every verse was included for a specific reason. Perhaps then Isaiah’s purpose here was to show us that the focus on beautiful exteriors is futile and pointless. There was something greater within Christ that drew people to Him (though artists have long concentrated on presenting Him in remarkable attractiveness). If we’re to look like Christ, as Scripture tells us to, then certainly we must forego our worthless attention on this fading shell.
According to Ezekiel, (16:15) those who trust in their own beauty end up playing the whore (at least that’s what God has to say to Jerusalem). This is an important thing to take note of because when we overly concern ourselves with our physical appearances we, in turn, become deeply affected by the opinions of others thereby wasting numerous hours in front of a mirror for the sake of worldly adoration and that, as harsh as it may sound, makes us whores because we’ve but One Husband and He cares quite little for earthly things; He’s tremendously jealous. If we set our sights on worldly approval, if we base the emotions of our hearts on the number of compliments we get, then we’re being disloyal to our Heavenly Husband.
If you go on reading in Ezekiel, upon arriving at 28:17 it might seem wise to ascertain that being physically ugly is a better situation because exterior beauty brings pride and according to this verse, the corruption of wisdom based on too great a focus on splendor. Of course, something we must understand is that God doesn’t make ugly, when He created each of us in His image He said it was good and since there’s nothing ugly about Him, your big nose, warts, crossed eyes and hairy chin are beautiful in His sight because He looks at the heart of a man (or woman in this case).
First Peter 3:3-4, gives us the best advice on the subject (though many women get riled up about his directives). He tells us not to worry about getting our hair “did,” putting on our Tiffany’s or making sure our clothes have mall labels. Instead we’re told to adorn ourselves with the imperishable beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit. A lot of us aren’t gentle or quiet so this is going to take some serious effort, but according to Peter, these attributes are very precious in God’s sight. We need to determine who we are trying to please, the beast of the world, or the King of the Universe?