This particular 2010 challenge affects just about every Christian woman in one way or another. Either we are caught in the web of it’s deception ourselves or we are worried about girls struggling to define their own identity. Either way, it is part of our reality.
Big business has discovered – all too well – that sex sells. Sadly, the suggestivetive sex-charged messages become ingrained into our culture and socialization process. The result is confused young people, disgruntled older people and a booming cosmetic surgery industry.
What amazes me is the ubiquity of it all. We can’t live twenty minutes of our lives without a sensually charged message on the radio, television, bill board or other media. It’s everywhere and in my opinion worse than ever. It’s affecting us. It’s affecting our husbands, children and families.
A few weeks ago, I visited Girl Scouts troupe. I created an activity to help them dispel the pressures of conformism beauty. Here’s what I did: I brought tons of magazines for them to use to create a collage of beauty. Then I’d somehow link it to scripture. Well, what I found was that the magazines (Ladies Home Journal, Woman’s Day, Vogue and others) had tons of sexually-charged images in them! All of them where advertisements for items as simple as perfume! Wild!
The Symptom and The Result
You may have heard the new excuse…I mean buzz word in our culture – “sexual addiction”. Most every man that cannot control his impulses cry this newly coined disorder. Frankly, I find the issue more spiritual than anything else, but I’ll leave that to another topic. Still, no one can deny the culpability of sexually charged media and how they affect us all – particularly our men.
According to the XXX Church, a Christian website helping those struggling with pornography, forty seven percent of families say pornography is a problem in their home. Not a small number; but a serious issue that escalates from what seems innocent to what can cause lasting damage.
Nothing About Being a Sex Machine
The word of God gives numerous admonishments for the Christian woman. According to I Timothy 2:9 we’re advised to focus more on the inner than the outer. In chapter 3, we learn how our persona and representation is linked to her husband’s ministry. We have a place in the kingdom.
But ironically, no where, absolutely nowhere in scripture are we advised to be sexy, physically alluring or arousing. But still so many of us hinge our very self worth on the ability to attract and draw attention. Even worse, the media perpetrates this frame of mind by limiting women to objects defined by prominent body parts and sensual behavior. It’s easy for us, as Christian women, to fall right into society’s rhythm of sex appeal as power and status.
Nothing New Under the Sun
The world of God defines me – and you – by a much higher standard of Christianity. For instance, I must repeatedly tell myself time and time again that my ultimate sense of worth is rooted in who God is creating me to become in Him. My ability to think, ponder and conceptualize is a great strength to the Kingdom of God. My desire to give to my community [and even the world] is a beautiful thing. How about my (and your) ability to care and pray for the hurting – wow, that’s a beauty mark for sure! I must remind (and recondition) myself to be who God tells me I am – not the Super Bowl commercials or the latest fashion wave.
A few scriptures are the cornerstone of my self identification. One of them I quote often here at GodsyGirl.Com. Romans 12:1-2 answers the 2010 challenge of living in our erotic society:
“Therefore, I urge you, brothers, in view of God’s mercy, to offer your bodies as living sacrifices, holy and pleasing to God—this is your spiritual act of worship.
Do not conform any longer to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will.” (NIV)
This helps me when I’m tempted conform to this world’s pressure of how I should look and present myself. I hope it helps you too as you deal with this 2010 challenge.