Let your adornment be what’s inside —the real you, the lasting beauty of a gracious and quiet spirit, in which God delights. 1 Peter 3:4-5
The world bombards us daily with its idea of beauty and what is beautiful. But this often runs contrary to God’s idea of beauty. What does it mean to embrace beauty? Thanks for joining Lori and I back at the kitchen table as she shares her story. Listen to what the Lord has shown my Lori through her experience over the last several years:
What does it mean to embrace beauty? It’s been a long process, almost seven years, but I’m starting to see the full picture of what God was trying to teach me.
I knew the beauty I saw in flowers, textiles, dishes, works of art, or a lovely landscape would make my heart sing. Being drawn to and creating beautiful things is part of who we are as women, and the world is a better place because of it. Of course, it couldn’t be my own beauty because I didn’t see myself as beautiful. For many reasons, I struggled with that part of me, believing that it was frivolous and I should be doing more serious things for God. You know, “working for the Lord!” – standing on street corners preaching the gospel, traveling to foreign lands and sacrificing everything I own!! But all beauty comes from Him and embracing it, creating it and nurturing it are all part of my worship.
Now let’s get back to our own beauty. That’s not so easy to embrace. How many of us look in the mirror and don’t like what we see? God loves what He sees. I know that in my head, but it’s quite another story to settle that in my heart. Our world is so fixated on personal appearance that it’s very difficult to turn off the world’s message and focus on reality. The reality is . . . you are loved just the way you are and God is much more interested in your heart and mind than He is your physical appearance. At age 54, I am learning to embrace who I am, the way God created me, and not worry about the world. I still believe we should be the best we can be in all areas; it honors our Creator. But our eyes need to be focused on what is pleasing, true and lovely.
Relax and enjoy the beauty that surrounds us every day; in nature, in created things like pretty dishes and a handmade quilt, but especially in people, both inside and out. —Lori Fink
Embrace — accept or support (a belief, theory, or change) willingly and enthusiastically.
Beauty — the qualities in a person or a thing that give pleasure to the senses or the mind.
What do you believe about your true beauty that you accept willingly and enthusiastically? Do you know how God defines your beauty? If it is contrary to your belief, are you willing to change your belief and embrace who God says you are?
What is God’s idea of beauty? 1 Peter 3:4-5 instructs us that real beauty is found on the inside and this inside beauty has several characteristics:
1. It’s the real you.
2. It’s a lasting beauty.
3. It’s consists of a gracious/gentle and quiet spirit.
4. It’s pleasing to a God.
What does a gracious (gentle) and quiet spirit look like in our lives? Take a look at the definitions for these words in the original language of the Bible:
Gracious/Gentle – praus – a mildness of disposition, gentleness of spirit, meekness- Meekness toward God is that disposition of spirit in which we accept His dealings with us as good, and therefore without disputing or resisting. It stems from trust in God’s goodness and control over the situation. The gentle person is not occupied with self at all. This is a work of the Holy Spirit, not of the human will. (Gal. 5:23)
Quiet – hesychios – quiet, tranquil, undisturbed.
2 Corinthians 4:16-18 tells us that our outward appearance (and body) is wasting away. Regardless of how many beauty products and treatments we use, we are aging daily. I know that is probably not the encouragement you wanted to hear. BUT here is the good news! True beauty, inner beauty is eternal, it does not fade. Our inner man, the part of us that will live forever, the part God is concerned about, is being renewed day by day. We need this daily renewal treatment to combat the world’s messages on beauty.
What is this daily renewal treatment? Renewal in Scripture is a word that means a complete change for the better, new, fresh, to cause to grow up. It is growing in our knowledge of Christ, in our faith, our love, our joy, our peace and gentleness. It is growth in Christlikeness. It is possible through our relationship with Christ Jesus and the power of the Holy Spirit living in us. Here are some verses on how we are renewed that you might want to check out later: Titus 3:5, Ephesians 4:23, Colossians 3:10 and Romans 12:1-2.
Charm is deceitful, and beauty is vain, but a woman who fears the Lord is to be praised. Proverbs 31:30
This beauty treatment of renewing our minds is where our attention needs to be focused. We are renewed through time spent in a God’s Word —studying, meditating and seeking to live it out. We are renewed as we spend time in prayer, communicating with God. We are renewed as we seek to acknowledge and embrace the beauty around us, in creation, in seeing God’s hand in all of our circumstances and in the relationships with other people He brings into our lives. Being aware and counting these blessings or gifts throughout our day is a way of renewing our mind and spirit and most importantly it honors and glorifies God.
There is always beauty to be embraced, regardless of our circumstances because God is beauty! We can always embrace the beauty found in our relationship with Him through Christ Jesus.
Worship the Lord in the beauty of His holiness; tremble before Him, all the earth. 1 Chronicles 16:29
Yours, Lord, is the greatness and the power and the glory and the beauty and the majesty, for everything in the heavens and on earth belongs to You. Yours, Lord, is the kingdom, and You are exalted as head over all. 1 Chronicles 29:11
How is your inner beauty regiment going? How is your time in God’s Word, in prayer, in seeking His presence daily and in cultivating a spirit and attitude of gratefulness to our Creator?
Embrace true beauty in your life today!