The Key to Beauty
Emphasis on verses 2-4.
For young Christian ladies who are between 16 and 20 years of age.
I know most you ladies want to be loved by man. And without even thinking about it, you have begun to try to attract that attention. Even if you already have a guy that you are with, you are so scared of losing him that you do several things to keep his attention on you so that you will not be left alone. It sounds like a great strategy, but in reality, it’s not. I want to share a few things that we do to get guys attention, and why these things, although seeming like good ideas, ultimately will only keep a guy around long enough to get your heart broken by him.
Let’s open to 1 Peter chapter 3 verse 3. “Do not let your adorning be external- the braiding of hair and the putting on of gold jewelry, or the clothing you wear-“ We often think of people back in the Bible days of wearing a brown plain robe type of dress, covering most of the arms, up to the neck, and down to the ankles. But, actually, the women of that time, were much like us today. They were very much into the latest fashions in jewelry, clothing, and hair styles. That seems like most of us here doesn’t it? And it’s not bad, but it can be done for the wrong purposes.
Peter mentioned three things to beware of: braiding of the hair, gold jewelry, and clothing. All of these have one thing in common. Our outward appearance. Our world today is very centered around appearance. And if we are not careful, we can follow the wrong direction.
Let’s first look at why, we as women, focus so much on the way we look. What are we looking for? What are we trying to get from dressing or appearing a certain way? I see two major reasons: acceptance from girls and attention from guys. We have all heard this before so I know we don’t need to focus in on that so much. But, I do want to mention something that these two reasons have in common. They are both temporary. If you get accepted by your appearance, they will soon see who you really are. Maybe they will accept that as well, or maybe they won’t. A guy who gives you attention because of the way you look is not interested in who you are but what you will be able to give, whether physically or status if he is looking to portray a certain image by the girl on his arm. In the end, your appearance will soon no longer have an effect on deepening or strengthening your relationship with those people. It will only first catch their eye. 2 Corinthians says “as we look not to the things that are seen but to the things are unseen. For the things that are seen are transient, but the things that are unseen are eternal.” The way we look, the clothes we wear, the makeup and jewelry we put on are transient, they are temporary. It says that the things unseen are the things that last for eternity, are the things that will last forever. Let’s look back to 1 Peter and see if he mentions anything that is eternal.
says “but let your adorning be the hidden person of the heart with the imperishable beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit, which in God’s sight is precious.” These things aren’t seen, they are hidden. These things are meek. It seems like a strange thing for Peter to be asking of us women. To be gentle and meek? No one will notice us, right! How will we ever fit in?! How will we ever find the right guy if we’re quiet?! Look at verse 5, “For this is how the holy women who hoped in God used to adorn (to make themselves beautiful) themselves, by submitting to their own husbands, as Sarah obeyed Abraham, calling him lord. And you are her children, if you do good and do not fear anything that is frightening.” In essence, Peter is telling us who we are by how we beautify ourselves. If it is from the external that we make ourselves beautiful, we are focused on the temporary. If we make ourselves beautiful by the hidden features of a “gentle and quiet spirit” and one who is “submitting,” we are “holy women who hope in God.” Let’s remember that these things that Peter describes as gentle and quiet are things of our character. And it is those things that last forever. If we find friends who accept us because of our character, those friendships will last. If a guy pursues us because of our gentle and quiet spirit, that relationship is bound to honor Christ and last, rather than the one that began because of our temporary looks. Take a minute to evaluate yourself. Are you spending more time developing and perfecting the way you look, or are you spending more time developing your character as the holy women in Christ that you claim to be? These verses are more than just for wives. Peter is not only talking the women who are wives, but the women who will become wives. You won’t magically acquire these characteristics the morning you wake up after marriage. These are developed over time and these last for a long time. Your looks can be taken away quickly. They are only as deep as the materials they are made out of. We desire relationships. Friendships with girls and a relationship with a guy that we hope will turn into marriage. What bait are you using to get those things? Will your bait keep the fish on the hook or will it allow the fish to break off as you are about to pull it out of the water?
Did you catch where it said that these things are precious in God’s sight? Verse 4 “…imperishable beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit, which in God’s sight is very precious.” The imperishable are precious to God and you are precious to God.
I want to close by reading this whole section of scripture. Listen carefully and reflect upon your own life. “Likewise, wives, be subject to you own husbands, so that even if some do not obey the word, they may be won without a word by the conduct of their wives, when they see your respectful and pure conduct. Do not let your adorning be external-the braiding of hair and the putting on of gold jewelry, or the clothing you wear - but let your adorning be the hidden person of the heart with the imperishable beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit, which in God’s sight is precious. For this is how the holy women who hoped in God used to adorn (to make themselves beautiful) themselves, by submitting to their own husbands, as Sarah obeyed Abraham, calling him lord. And you are her children, if you do good and do not fear anything that is frightening.”
God, thank you for making us women who we are. And today we ask that you help us and guide us to be the women who you desire for us to be. We know that your way is best. Your way will last forever and our way will fade before our eyes. We trust in your Word. Help us to live by it and be refreshed by it daily. Thank you Lord for all that you have done for and given us. Thank you for dying for our selfish and sinful ways. In Jesus’ name I pray amen.