love, joy, truth

God’s love is my motivation. And I’m not gonna let anything steal my joy.

“For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.” – Jesus (John 3:16)

“Then you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.” – Jesus (John 8:32)

 

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Us, Beauty, and Jesus

“Charm is deceptive, and beauty is fleeting; but a woman who fears the Lord is to be praised.” – Proverbs 31:30

How many times in our culture do us girls forget this! To be beautiful seems like it’s an accomplishment nowadays. It shouldn’t be! Loving an outcast? Yes, that’s an accomplishment. Seeking to serve others and be a light instead of focusing on yourself? Yes, that’s a beautiful achievement that should be praised. But trying to charm people and look especially attractive? Is that edifying other people or edifying yourself?

I ponder these questions every now and then, hoping with all my might that I’m not being vain, that I’m being true and kind. But yes, I fail. Sometimes I love my looks too much and sometimes I hate my looks too much. But what are looks? We hear all the time that man only looks at outward appearances and the Lord looks at the heart, but do we believe it?

When Jesus died on the cross, He wasn’t dying to make us beautiful on the outside, He was dying to make us beautiful on the inside. He rose to life on the third day so He, our beautiful Savior, could dwell inside us and guide us on this journey to eternal life. Was charm on His mind the day the soldiers nailed him to the cross? Was a beautiful face the reason He died? No! He died because God had a beautiful plan in store for us.

But if beauty is nothing, why did God create beauty? Wait a minute! I never said that beauty was nothing, I just said beauty isn’t EVERYTHING. The God of the Universe created us in His image, and it hints in Psalm 139 that we are fearfully and wonderfully made. God is a beautiful God, so we are beautiful humans. The problem with beauty is that it takes our focus off of Jesus. When we surrender our lives to Christ, we aren’t supposed to live for shallow, flighty things that will soon pass away. We’re supposed to live for Him. He’s given us the freedom to love people deeply because of the love He has poured out on us. He’s given us the power to speak truth in that same love. And He’s give us the gracious Holy Spirit to help us on our way.

And besides, there’s no reason to worry over our looks, because God already thinks you’re beautiful. Before you tell me you just can’t seem to get your thoughts off of your beauty, (whether good or bad thoughts), ask Jesus to help you focus on Him. That’s something He’s endlessly happy to help you with, and He never lets down a prayer like that. Depending on Him is a lot what fearing the Lord is all about.

I pray that we would ask for God’s help to focus on Him, and that we would also ask Him what He wants us to do. And I pray we would each learn to love Him more than beauty, because He’s more beautiful than us all.

“One thing I ask from the Lord, this only do I seek: that I may dwell in the house of the Lord all the days of my life, to gaze on the beauty of the Lord and to seek him in his temple.” – Psalm 27:4