My husband loves the sea. When he asked me to be his girlfriend, I told him that he might have to reconsider, because there was something he didn't know about me. After a dead silence haunted us for what seemed to take forever, I finally mustered the courage to make my confession....
I didn’t like the sea. To be honest, I still don’t.
I always feel like a tiny, vulnerable ant trying to battle the gigantic, monstrous waves, a battle I seldom win.
Not only that, I don’t like the beach. When I see the golden brown bodies lying next to me I always feel this desperate urge to cover myself with twenty towels, which you can’t really do in the scorching Africa sun. Most girls seem very confident in their bikinis, walking around like models on the catwalk, unaware of the attention they are getting - or “not getting.” But I am not one of them. Insecurities flood my mind, comparison keeps me company and I always leave the beach with one nagging question:
Am I beautiful?
I once mentioned this inner turmoil to one of my friends after being rejected by a guy during my Varsity years. She looked at me with a“what’s the big deal” expression and responded with a very blunt: “Stick a piece of paper on your mirror with the words “I am beautiful” written on it and look at it every morning.” I left the conversation thinking I must be the only woman in the world struggling with this ridiculous question. Luckily, Stacey Eldrige in her book Captivating says that most women ask themselves this universal question.
Some churches attempt to answer this complicated question by teaching that God focuses more on the inner beauty than the outer beauty. I always found some comfort in the statement, until I discovered how difficult it was to stay beautiful on the inside. It is much easier to go for a haircut once a month than to continually walk in love! Hence, the turmoil all over again!
Some say I shouldn’t focus on the outward appearance too much; it is only a tent for our spirits to dwell in. My response to that: I would love my tent to be beautiful!
One day it dawned on me that I was starting to sound like the evil stepmother in Snow White, asking everyone including the mirror: Who is the most beautiful woman in the world! And we all know the end to that story. So, I had to renew my mind according to the Word.
Prov 31:30 says:
Charm ( attractiveness that casts a spell, appeal, attraction, magnetism) and grace ( style, beauty of movement, form) are deceptive (lead into error, cause to believe what is false, disbelieve what is true, mislead) and beauty is vain (unfruitful, unproductive, ineffective, futile) but a woman who fears (takes serious their responsibility towards God and respects what He says), will be praised (admired, honoured, go into raptures over)
The truth of who we are can sometimes be hidden by outer appearances that may look more captivating and important. The world loves charm and grace. Most romantic comedies usually feature a beautiful woman exercising her mysterious mesmerising power over a gorgeous guy. But they neglect to mention that this power of form and appeal will always lead others to either believe what is false or disbelieve what is true. Charm and grace have deceptive power.Pause and think about the following.....
How many times do you believe that you won’t find love because you don’t look like a Hollywood actress? (Pause and think)
Or how often do you believe that you are not worthy of your husband’s faithfulness because you do not captivate him the way another woman does? (Pause and think)
How seldom do you compare yourself with a more gracious and charming woman, thinking you are less attractive, less valuable and less desirable? (Pause and think)
Do you sometimes shy away when meeting a sexy and beautiful woman, thinking you are not qualified to be her friend? (Pause and think)
Or how many times do you withdraw from a conversation thinking you are not as talented or interesting compared to another more attractive woman? (Pause and think)
Do you sometimes think... “why bother looking beautiful”.....it won’t make a difference anyway? (Pause and think)
These messages we get from charm and grace usually misleads us to believe something false about who God made us to be. A woman with a sexy body and a Marilyn Monroe mystery can sometimes cause us to not see ourselves through the eyes of truth.
The opposite also happens....
Do you sometimes struggle to believe your husband’s words of love and adoration, because you do not think it’s true? (Pause and think)
Do you sometimes disregard the testimony of married women when they say they only trusted God for their husbands, because you think it won’t happen to you? You do not feel beautiful enough? (Pause and think)
Do you often ignore compliments, because you think people are lying? (Pause and think)
Do you often doubt that God has a specific calling and specific purpose for your life, because you are not captivating and charming like someone you know? (Pause and think)
Or how many times do you think that you should only mix with the rich and influential, because God must have his favourites based on looks, and therefore you only mix with the “in” crowd. (Pause and think)
Or do you sometimes disbelieve that God can love you without any expectations. Don’t you often feel like you should do something from your side, like go for a make-over or buy a new dress for God to answer your prayers and give you your heart’s desires? (Pause and think)
Charm and grace misleads us to disbelieve the truth about how God feels about us. We often build a wall around us, shielding us from messages of truth, because it’s much easier to believe the lie.
There is no lasting power in beauty. It will fade, and therefore we cannot construct a true perception around it. Beauty is ineffective and unfruitful. Even men who have committed adultery will testify to this. If we want to be honoured, admired, respected and celebrated, we cannot look to charm and grace to provide us with messages of truth. Beauty is vain. Charm and grace are deceptive.
Our value should be determined by the revelations we get from a living relationship with God. We should respect what God says about us. There is great influence in knowing that we are worth the blood of Jesus Christ, and that we are seated in heavenly places. A sense of authority and respect for God’s work in our lives should motivate us to believe the best about ourselves, to look after ourselves and to reflect the gospel through who we are.
How we look should not celebrate charm and grace, but value.
Our value must be reflected in how we walk, in what we wear and what we say. We are daughters of Christ, princesses in the Kingdom of God. The worth of anything is dependent on how much someone is willing to pay for it, and how much someone will sacrifice to keep it. God the Father gave ALL He had, to pay the true price of our worth, and to keep us connected to Him. And He daily gives everything we need to reaffirm His love for us. Our value is determined by the sacrifice that was made to save us, and we were paid with the highest price in Heaven and on Earth, the death of Jesus Christ, God’s only Son. Angels stand in awe; creation waits for the revealing of the daughters of God with trembling, because they know how precious we are in God’s eyes. In the Spiritual realm there is a sense of wonder of what God did for us, because all principalities and powers know - God chose us. We are worth God’s love, God’s blessings, God’s favour and God’s heart. We are surrounded by God’s goodness toward us.
Do you believe it?
Do you believe that you are precious? Do you believe that God orchestrated everything 2000 years ago to love you forever? Do you believe that you carry the opinion of God in your life, and that it’s more costly than beauty? Do you believe in the power of God’s words over your life, the power of the value He places on you?
Believe the truth of His Word!
Roll out the red carpet.......call the paparazzi.....let’s give the world something to adore, to celebrate, to honour and to be raptured over.....let’s give them God’s value....let’s give them WOW!
Join me today by making a heart’s decision that you will never be misled by beauty that will fade, but that you will be led by God’s eternal value that will last!
You are beautiful....in every way....(Pause and think)
Enough said....let’s go to the beach!
About the Author: Laetitia King aspires to be a godly, woman of wisdom. She loves green tea, a good laugh with friends, barbeque with red wine and God's Word. She inspires readers by giving them insight to her daily battles, as well as testimonies of victories. She is 29 years old and married. She enjoys blogging www.awomanofwisdom.blogspot.com