Beauty Of a Woman

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1 Peter 3:3-4; Prov 11:22; Prov 31:30; Romans 9:20-21; Gen 29:17: Luke 12:48, Psalms 139:14; John 7:24; John 8:15

“Beauty is in the eyes of the beholder, just as your life is in the hands of Jehovah.”
When these words first surfaced in my heart I was just beginning a long journey to self-love and self-acceptance. I must have been about 19 at that time. (I realize for some this may seem like that was a bit late but better late than never, right?). I was learning to see myself as beautiful, and not through the eyes of someone’s eyes but through my own. A few months prior to this ‘epiphany’ I’d come to realize that having someone else see me as beautiful was not enough. You see same way you can neither remove nor add a life from the hands of God, so is this thing of beauty- you could never convince someone of something’s beauty, they either see it or they don’t. In my case I simply didn’t see my beauty. It didn’t matter how many boys chased me, or that I had a boyfriend who looked at me, and treated me, as if I was the most breathtaking thing to grace the face of this earth. In fact I thought there was something wrong with them, especially this particular guy who had decided to stick around for all those years. I was this experience and these feelings towards myself that had me find these words as I was searching for the true meaning of beauty.
As a teenager my idea of beauty was flawed on so many levels, the two main ones being:
It was based strictly on my outward appearance
It was measured against other girls, I would constantly compare myself to them.
Of course with time I have learnt the error of my ways but the journey has been neither easy, nor cheap. For something so seemingly shallow beauty appears to consume a lot of our minds, hearts and spirits as women. So today I will see what the Word has to say about it, as opposed to what the world says it is.

First things first. Let us be open and honest with each other- BEAUTY MATTERS TO US women, on so many different levels and for so many reasons. For some it is enough to just be pretty but for others they feel the need to be breathtaking. If beauty wasn’t important the make up industry wouldn’t be a multi-billion dollar industry, and this is just cosmetics before we include hair, shoes, clothes, jewelry and diets. If you want to lie to yourself that it does’t matter then check again, as a woman it’s just in you to care. My theory is because the first thing that Eve experienced when Adam saw her was admiration and appreciation FOR HER LOOKS and it just became a part of women to want that. How do I know it was for her looks and not for her heart or mind? Simple, in my bible Adam spoke before she did so he had no way of knowing how she thinks and if one does out speak how else will you know their heart? (for out of the abundance if the heart the mouth speaks). So there is nothing wrong with wanting to be seen as a beautiful woman, the problem comes when that is all that matters to you and your inside does not match the outside.

When Apostle Paul writes to Peter in 1 Peter 3:3-4 he reminds women that their beauty must not just be outward but it must come from the inner being because that’s what God puts value in. When I first read this portion of scripture I thought it meant that looks don’t matter at all. How wrong I was! This scripture is saying that the Godly beauty is mire than skin-deep. It is telling us that it is more important to God that you spend more time perfecting your spirit than you do perfecting your baking techniques. I suppose the women Paul was referring to is a lot like the women of my generation that will spend hours trying to make sure that their hair, make up and closet is “on fleek” yet our spirits look like malnourished toddlers because we adorn the temple so well yet we forget to care for the interior. May God forgive us for this, and may we, in true, repentance seek to make the two match.

You see no matter how gorgeous your physical body is there will always be someone more attractive, younger or with a better technique/closet than you so you will continue to feel inadequate the more you obsess over it. Yet if you obsess over your spiritual beauty the standard is already set- this standard is Jesus Christ. There is no one more beautiful, perfect or flawless in spirit than him. So instead of chasing ever changing, very frustrating worldly standards of beauty why not go for the never changing, ever-so perfect standard of Christ. Think of it this way the word never said Jesus was handsome but no one has ever imagined him not handsome (well at least I do not think so)  and as he grew so did his favor with people, as well as God. It just goes to show that a beautiful spirit will always translate into the physical.

Physical beauty is a gift and like every other gift given to us by the creator it’s use will be accounted for. In Luke 12:48 Jesus says, “Of whom much is given, much is expected.”, so the more beautiful you are the more you owe God. Why are other women more beautiful than others? I HAVE NO IDEA, and to be honest it’s not for us to ask (Romans 9:20- Who are you to talk back to God? Shall what is formed say to him who formed it, ‘Why did you make me like this?’). Our place is to accept that grace that was give in this department and ask “How may I use what I have to serve my Father?”. Like any other gift it can be used for the greater good (eg Ester) or for wickedness (eg Jezebel)- the choice is in the hands of the one that has been give the beauty. Today we have beautiful young women that :”sell” their bodies to “blessers”, they have taken God’s gift and corrupted it. Ruining their lives, wrecking marriages and have become as nasty as “gold rings on a pig’s snout” (Proverbs 11:22)

Two other common misconceptions some ladies have is that we often assume that the more attractive you are the easier life is and that every attractive girl enjoys such attention. I’ll start with the latter, I have a sister of mine Tabitha from my church and she is one of those ladies that when you see her you’ll immediately think, “She’s really pretty.” To my surprise 2 weeks ago in cell group she complained. At first I was taken aback, I mean in a generation that outs so much into how we look here is someone saying it sometimes irritates her. Why? She said that people treat her as if she weren’t very smart or responsible sometimes. She related of how everyone else gets responsibilities in church that are demanding (eg cell group leader, sharing in church) and she’s usually called to MC events because it is more to do with looks than anything else. She also mentioned how everyone else is praised and recognized for their ABILITIES and for her it seems to just center around her looks. Here is one of the many gorgeous ladies that just want to be seen as more than just a pretty face, or great body. Consider Queen Vashti whose husband forgot that before she was beautiful, she was his queen and worthy of respect that would mean calling her out to be paraded like he did would never have been an option. I’ve also noticed that the guys in the world aren’t particularly kind either- these women have to develop a 7th sense to help them navigate through the sea to find the genuine suitor from those that are just there for a quick tour. (When you do not quite so obviously turn heads this seems to be less of a problem because you are seen as less of a collectable and more of a person with depth)

As for beauty making life easier it’s not necessarily true either. Compare Leah and Rachael, Jacob’s wives- Rachael was beautiful but Leah, not so much (Gen 29:17). Yet when it came to popping out babies Leah was on fire and Rachael was in big trouble. From the story I would guess that Jacob preferred Rachael’s bed to, her sister, Leah’s and yet God gave Leah more children than Rachael. In a situation like that of what value was beauty to Rachael? Nothing. It just shows that physical beauty is not a substitute for anything else that life has to offer so let us not get so caught up in it. At the end of the day it is just measured by human eyes and standards that are ever so fickle. Today size 0 is in but tomorrow thicker girls are the ‘it thing’- who can be both at the same time? Think of all the stories we read about of how models eat cotton wool dipped in lemon juice to feel filled without taking in a lot, if any, calories. Yet so many want to be them, or be like them. Or girls that constantly go under the knife, get injections, slather creams and take pills to “enhance” their beauty. They may look good today but sometimes when the side effects catch up with them the stories are gruesome to say the least.

The most important thing to remember is that ”EVERYTHING GOD CREATES IS PERFECT” ie you are perfect. God made you the way you look to fit his plan. You many not know why you are your-kind-of-beautiful today but remember that God’s ways are beyond our understanding. If you were not breathtaking would a beautiful God have you inscribed on the palm his hands? Do not be so quick to change who you are to meet worldly standards. Imagine you bleach yourself but the man God had planned for you prefers dark skinned women? If you truly believe that you are made i the image of a perfect God then you should know that you too are perfect. Do not worry about what people say about how you look. As human beings they will always use their flawed scales ( John 8:15) but God is never wrong so what his word says is final and he says that YOU ARE FEARFULLY AND WONDERFULLY MADE. At the end of the day BEAUTY IS VAIN, meaning that it fades away, but a woman who fears the Lord will FOREVER BE PRAISED. So why not focus on perfecting that which will last forever? Let us focus on our inner selves and learning to fear our Lord ( working out our salvation with fear and trembling lest we lose it).trembling).

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Submission of a woman

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Genesis 2:18 Ephesians 5:2, 21-22,33 Colossians 3:18 1 Peter 3:1 

 I know that for may women today this subject is very touchy and hyper sensitive but I will attempt to tackle it anyway. This thing of submission is so abused and distorted today to begin with let’s be clear about a few things first.
1: Submission is a wife’s gift to HER husband, not to every male out there. So please stop this twisted idea that a woman must be submissive to men. If you are not her husband then know that that she doesn’t owe it to you. Therefore if the way she is works for  her husband sit down my brother and either focus on your own wife or get yourself a wife. Brothers and fathers alike, your daughters and sisters are not there to submit to you- that’s your wife’s job and she is not your wife.
2: Submission is not a license to abuse your wife or use her as a doormat. If you read Ephesians 5:25-31 it will tell you how to treat your submissive wife. Basically love her the way you love yourself. So before you go and start demanding that she submits look in the mirror, tell yourself to step up and love her. Take from a woman- it is easier to submit to a loving man because you know you are safe so letting will not worry you as much. PS. she is not your servant so please do not treat her as such. To be submissive is let someone else lead but it does not mean to let them lord over you while you just “yes sir, ok sir”. At the end of the day gentlemen you too have a part to play. This concept works best in an environment of love and it is your responsibility to build and maintain it. Before she submits you owe her respect (she should reciprocate of course) and while she is submissive you owe her a love so real, so strong that your life literarily depends on it. Play your part men.
Having explained all of that let me say what I wanted to say lol

After creation all was well…. That is until temptation and the fall of Adam and Eve (well mankind really). As punishment Eve was told she would have severe pain in childbirth and she would have to SUBMIT to her husband. The talk of pain to, and in, a woman is for another day- today we will focus on submission. Submission was a concept introduced as punishment but it turned out so well that today it used to describe the church’s relationship with Christ. We must remember that this is a MARRIAGE concept though, not a common concept. So outside of holy matrimony eg.at work or school this does not, and should not be applied.

I have come to realize that the reason saw submission as a fitting punishment for the woman because of the power (authority) he had put in her during creation. The word submit means to serve, to lower yourself. Submission is NOT doing laundry, cooking and other household chores- if it was then chefs, maids and even washing machines or dry cleaners would all automatically qualify to be called “wives”because they too do all these things. No, it actually a state of the mind and heart- a woman could not do chores in her house because they have the necessary help to do so around the house and still.be called a good,.submissive wife. To submit is a VOLUNTARY ACTION, it implies having power but choosing to give it up and surrender.

The power in a woman. The enemy saw this it and chose to exploit it. Does anyone wonder why the serpent chose Eve rather than Adam? The fact that Eve convinced Adam to take a bite of the apple is proof that Adam’s resolve was unmovable. Is it possible that the enemy knew that, had he tempted Adam first, Adam wouldn’t have had the power to convince Eve to follow suit? Of what use would only half a corrupted people be to the devourer? He saw what Eve, and women throughout the ages have not yet come to understand- simply put it is the fact that:  WOMEN HAVE THE POWER.

Men, being created first, have an inborn pride. A pride that defines them, and yet it is so fragile. This is why Paul, whenever he spoke of marriage, stresses the this concept of submission. I know that.today certain feminist ideals appear reject this notion and I’m tempted to believe that this is one of the major reasons marriages today are falling apart- we are.moving.further and further away from the ultimate blueprint of how households must be structured (according to the Word of God) in the name of being modern and keeping up with the times.

I almost feel like women have once again taken a bite of another apple- from the tree of “power and freedom”. The problem is we have let it get to our heads, we are almost drunk on this power and freedom, letting ourselves run amok. I would say that we are now behaving like toddlers in a candystore- taking it all, even that which we do not need, forgetting too much of anything is bad (it is the explanation for reasons why some women want to take their degrees, job titles and pay checks home to their husbands to prove why they too deserve respect in the house- even without all that it is your God-given right as a wife). As Christian women we need to realize that we were created as “helpers”, not as heads, but helpers. Let me tell you though, there is absolutely nothing wrong with being a helper. For Jesus even said he who HELPS a prophet will receive a prophet’s reward (Matthew 10:41). Meaning that a helper and the helped are equal before God. We must try to learn not to get hung up on titles. Remember that even the leader must serve those he leads (Luke 22:26) meaning that everyone must serve everyone in one capacity or other ie our husbands too must be like our servants as they lead us.

Let us not underestimate the role of a helper though. Helpers usually deserve more credit than is given them, and are more powerful than the one that needs help. All the same we will always be exactly that- helpers, because that’s what we are created and designed for. We are pretty much the crutches of the men in our lives, ladies, their braces, their support, like their night-vision goggles. Yes, they need us to function but, let me warn you, it is this need that makes us useful and the we try to overtake them there’s a problem. Because even the wrong use of crutches can damage a healthy leg, just as night vision goggles can blind the user if used in daylight. 

We have been wondering why men shy away from “tough, powerful, independent” women……the answer is simple: they can see and sense that they are not needed (again it’s about their pride). I mean if the crutches can move on their own, the braces stand alone and the goggles see without eyes, then of what use is the person? They are useless right? But ask yourself this…… What good are self-using tools if they don’t improve the lives of people? NOTHING. So is a woman who claims that she “doesn’t need anything from a man”. The men shy away because their pride tells them that they aren’t needed and so they retreat. Men need to feel wanted and needed, it boosts their egos and gives them the ability to hold their heads up in society- they do want want to feel “immasculated” or in adequate because that is how God designed them. (He commanded them to work and provide so it is just within them to have to feel useful and like leaders).

I am not in anyway condoning laziness in women. I’m not saying we must sit and do nothing more than wait for our men to do all the work. For the Proverbs 31 doesn’t sit around doing nothing but she works, and she works hard (for even working and bringing something to the table is to be a “suitable helper”). But even as she works she knows her place her place, and he husband adores her for it. So yes ladies, let us “slay” and “get our own” but that does not take away why we created- to help, and what we were commanded to do- to submit. Knowing that the the sweetest of smiles and gentlest of prodings will get the men to do as we want faster than the most brutal and harshest of forces.

Our job is to make up for his weaknesses but we must not rub them in his face. Cover up for his inadequacies but don’t bury him in them. Instead like Queen Esther let us use the gift of being a woman, the power of prayer and the knowledge of our place to sway the men in our lives in the direction we want (a direction I pray that is Godly and good). Doing our jobs in submission- a quiet, slight and yet very powerful way of wielding the power we bear, as a woman, as God’s daughter, as his Princess and a Queen. 
Remember the state of your husband is a direct reflection of you and your ability to’help’, just as your well-being is a reflection of him and his ability to ‘lead’. If either one of you looks bad as an individual then their partner looks equally bad because the day you said, “I DO” you became one before God and man (Genesis 2:24). Both husband and wife have a part to play after all you are a team, so remember these 2 facts:

1. There is no “I” in team.

2: You are only as strong as.your weakest link.