What is beauty?
Wikipedia (find the page here) describes beauty this way:
Beauty is commonly defined as a characteristic present in a person, place, object or idea that provides a perceptual experience of pleasure, meaning or satisfaction to the mind or to the eyes, arising from sensory manifestations such as a shape, colour, personality, sound, design or rhythm.”
Facts (taken from various internet sources)
– Marilyn Monroe wore a size 14 (many women aspire to be a size 10 or even below).
– If Barbie was a real woman, she’d have to walk on all fours due to her proportions.
– The average woman weighs 144 lb. and wears between a 12-14.
– Models in the magazines are airbrushed = not perfect!
– A psychological study in 1995 found that three minutes spent looking at a fashion magazine caused 70% of women to feel depressed, guilty, and shameful.
– Models twenty years ago weighed 8% less than the average woman. Today they weigh 23% less than the average woman.
– ‘Packaged Facts’ reported that ethnic-specific hair, beauty, and cosmetic products saw double digit growth between 2001 and 2006. Overall purchases of both ethnic-specific and general-market HBC products by Asians, African Americans, and Hispanics are set to top $8.4 billion by the end of 2006.
– Beneficial beauty products in the US were worth $16 billion in 2007.
– The haircare, skincare and color cosmetics products bought by and for teens and tweens was valued at $7 billion at retail in 2007.
Beauty is something that is not unique to women, but it is a uniquely important to women, so let’s say something for the ladies. You are beautiful. You may not think you are, you may not feel you are, but it is very true. The question every man asks is ‘am I strong enough?’ The question every woman is asking is, ‘am I worth it, am I valuable, am I beautiful?’ The answer is yes. And God says YES! The Bible says that God made man, then he said it is not good for man to be alone. So, woman is the pinnacle of God’s creation.
The first clip you want is found here – http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iYhCn0jf46U – and is the ‘Dove Evolution’ clip.
You’ll see how powerful this clip is, and how it can be used, especially with girls.
A parody of this clip can be found here – http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7-kSZsvBY-A
Although this is a parody of the Dove clip, it also makes a strong point. Both clips are around 1.15 mins.
In the Dove Evolution clip, we see a regular woman who is sat in front of a mirror. The light is shone onto her face and then countless make-up artists, hair stylists and others pamper her, and cover her in just the right amounts of eye shadow, blusher, lip gloss, lash highlighters and hair gel. She is transformed into a completely different looking woman. Then, before she is put up onto a billboard in a street, she is heavily airbrushed so her lips, cheeks, eyes, neck, colour and shoulders are made to look perfect. This then becomes the image of beauty that we see, rather than the woman herself. What we look at is the skill of the make-up, hair and graphic design artist. We no longer see the woman, or the real woman underneath the cosmetics.
But this is the wrong message. You see, beauty is more than skin deep. A young man was talking to an older man about why he found his old wife beautiful. The old man smiled and replied, ‘My wife is like an archaeologist’s treasure – with age, she grows ever more interesting!’
You see, the old man had it right. Yes, we are all attracted to people’s beauty. But too often we look at the outer-beauty rather than the inner-beauty. What is inner-beauty? Well, it’s love that’s not selfish, being supportive, caring, kind, gentle, honest, loyal, committed, reliable, fun, someone who loves people, or animals or children etc. These are the kinds of things that make beauty. Seeming outer-beauty fades, but inner-beauty can grow, in the right person.
(In the parody clip we find the reverse of the Dove Evolution clip. In this a fairly good looking bloke is made to look like a slob by being fed with trash food, cigarettes and alcohol. So be careful what you feed yourself!!)
What does The Bible say?
One day, the people in the land of Israel were looking for a new King. In England, the next King will be Prince Charles, son of Queen Elizabeth – or Prince William, grandson of Queen Elizabeth. However, in Israel at the time, a King wasn’t always just chosen because he was the son of the current King. Instead, the King was chosen by a man called a prophet, who God would speak to. So one day God told the prophet, called Samuel, to go find the new King from a family. One by one the father of the family brought his sons forward. The oldest son was brought forward, so were many other sons, but they were rejected by God.
1 Samuel 16.7-8: But the LORD said to Samuel, “Do not consider his appearance or his height, for I have rejected him. The LORD does not look at the things man looks at. Man looks at the outward appearance, but the LORD looks at the heart.”
Finally, the youngest son who’d been out in the fields looking after the sheep was brought in front of the prophet..
Then the LORD said, “Rise and anoint him; he is the one.”
As a Christian, I believe that God made you and I believe that God doesn’t make mistakes. When he created mankind, the Bible said that God looked on and said, ‘It is good’ – meaning ‘wow, now they are amazing, perfect.”
It’s been said that there are accidental parents, but there are no accidental children. You are not an accident, you are created in the perfect image of God. OK, so none of us are perfect. But we believe that if we get to know Jesus, that we can be changed inside – so that we become ever more beautiful, in a deep, real and lasting way.