I grew up most of my teenage life with acne blanketing my skin. As most have experienced or can at least imagine, this was a dictator of my self esteem for quite a while. You see, we’re told that this sinful world imprisons, and freedom is only obtained through a give from God. What we’re is not always explained is the sly and silent motion of that imprisoning process. Because of the make-up and Victoria Secret commercials, beauty became a box that one fits into with only a clear, stunning face.
I knew in my mind that our Creator only fabricates things of beauty and worth, but I searched for a way to know it in my heart. I wanted to harbor the truth of what made me beautiful in the eyes of God. I’m sure many of you have already had 1 Peter 3:3-5 come to mind. “Why didn’t she just read that verse and feel better?” That’s understandable, for it very clearly reads…
3 Your beauty should not come from outward adornment, such as elaborate hairstyles and the wearing of gold jewelry or fine clothes. 4 Rather, 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. 5 For this is the way the holy women of the past who put their hope in God used to adorn themselves.
If you’re a sweet, gentle, quiet woman – you may have felt much comfort from this verse. However, if you’re like me, you’re sitting there thinking, “Great, now where’s the beauty verse for the loud, blunt women?” I spent years with these verses being something I paid attention to only half-heartedly, I finally decided I needed to go deeper. My heart is to share with you what Jesus has walked me through.
There are Three Pillars of Womanhood that I believe God is trying to paint for us. When we allow our essence to stand on those pillars, we are living out God’s original purpose for us, perfectly beautiful in His eyes.
1) Hope – Holy women put all of their hope in the Lord. We are called to not rely on our husbands, finding a husband, our appearance, or our own strength. Most of the people that society are captivated by are those who have known struggle, known defeat, but have still found a way to be triumphant in battle. As women following Christ, that banner we raise as we walk to the front lines should be the truth and promises from Jesus Christ. Many times this needs to be a concentrated effort. Prayer, re-reading His Word, and being still in His presence are all beneficial when trying to lift that banner high.
2) Fearlessness – When we have hope rooted in the soil, fearlessness can then begin to grow within us. Proverbs 31:25 says this about a beautiful woman, “25 She is clothed with strength and dignity; she can laugh at the days to come.” This does not mean that she is under that impression that her life will lack hardships. She is not naive. In fact it implies that she aware in full that struggle is on the horizon; and yet all of her hope is deposited in Jesus, leaving her with nothing left to fear. Without fear entangling her in chains, she is free to go about her responsibilities, have confidence, and glorify God.
3) Beauty – So often I thank Jesus for enjoying beauty. How much more lovely is it to serve someone who likes and creates beautiful things? I was humbled to realize that if He is the Creator of all we see, then beauty originates from who He is. He is beauty. He is light. He is art. He is color. We serve a God who makes everything of worth eternal. When He is passionate about something, He doesn’t hold back. He made our souls eternal, our relationship with Him eternal, and beauty eternal. Therefore, He adores beauty that won’t perish, more specifically, “the unfading beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit”. Oh how much more He cares about your heart than you outer appearance! (Praise God!) Here’s the good news for ladies like me! We don’t need to be quiet and flawless, but the workings of our heart, mind, and soul are to be at peace. Our stress and tendency to micromanage everything was created to be smoothed over with a gentle spirit. How is that spirit cultivated? Especially today with families, jobs, and confidence being eroded by this world? By putting our hope in the Lord, becoming fearless, and allowing that to shine through as our beauty. Make up and push up bras aren’t evil! But we give the enemy an upper hand when we allow those things to define our beauty. In reality, the airbrushed, magazine look is unattainable. However, we have a loving Savior who wants to unveil to us our strength, our beauty, and our specified function to reveal who He is to those around us.
Woman – who you are, and who I am – was the last thing He created when weaving this world together. He let His eyes meditate on all He had formed and said, “No, something is still missing. A different kind of strength than that of men, a fierceness, a peacefulness, a gentleness, a beauty is missing.” And then He fashioned something more beautiful than rolling hills, sunsets, and oceans – something to crown creation. That thing He created, was you.