so very many of us women suffer from low self-esteem. normally all our self-esteem issues revolve around our physical appearance. we are obsessed about our weight, hair, skin, facial features and so many other areas. you would be hard pressed to find a woman that would not change at least one thing about her appearance. why do we find it so hard to love ourselves?
we have been told time and time again that to be beautiful we need to look like a super model. the media tries to make you feel lower than low every single moment of your life. the media wants you to constantly remember just how beautiful, smart and charming you could be if you would only buy this product or that product. they certainly don't let you know that 99% of the photographs in the magazines are air brushed.
all you have to do is look around a bit while you are in line at walmart. nearly every magazine will have a big breasted, half naked woman. there are a few exceptions (paula deen, rachel ray, taste of home and good housekeeping to name a few) but for the most part this is what you'll see. what message does that send us? it says to be beautiful, to be attractive, to be wanted and to be worthy you MUST look like that. and if you don't, well, you're outta luck. we feel pressured to be beautiful according to how the media defines it.
another thing i attribute womens low opinions of themselves to is the porn industry. over the past decade the porn industry has grown by leaps and bounds. what was once considered taboo is now right there in your face. i want to list some mind-blowing stats for you.
- 1 in 5 mobile searches are pornography related
- the porn industry generates $13 billion each year in the US (more than the NFL, NBA and MLB combined)
- 66% of porn performers have herpes, 12-28% have sexually transmitted diseases, and 7% have HIV
- the first exposure to pornography in men is 12 years old
- 50% of all Christian men and 20% of all christian women say they are addicted to pornography
- 56% of divorce cases involved one party having an obsessive interest in pornographic websites
porn use is glorified in today's mass media. But that doesn't change the fact that porn use is bad for us. In fact, numerous studies have proven that watching porn affects your brain.
when pornography invades a home it can make a woman feel old, unattractive and sexually undesirable. most of the women in the porn industry are no more than 18 years old. and now with plastic surgery, makeup and let's not forget digital enhancement, most of the women you see on the screen actually don't exist in real life. now let's flip back to the wife who is in her mid 30's, has had a few kids (stretch marks, extra pounds, etc) and might be extremely beautiful but she can't compete with an 18 year old. this leads to feeling ugly, unworthy, unwanted, undesirable and rejected by her husband. also, a man who is addicted to porn can become so used to being sexually aroused by this unrealistic woman on the screen that he might eventually find it difficult to perform sexually with his own wife. imagine the toll THAT would take on her self confidence.
now on to the exciting part after all this debbie downer depressing stuff...
we are all made in Gods image. every single one of us. do you know what that means? i am beautiful, so are YOU, because we are daughters of the King and we were made in His image. take a moment and let that sink in. you are perfectly perfect and what He wants you to be.
a precious gem's beauty isn't always recognized until it enters the hand of a skilled jeweler who knows just how to clean and cut the gem in the way that will best reflect the light that shines on it. our Father, the one who loves us the absolute most, holds us in His hands. we are His and He is ours.
i can be confident. you can be confident. we can all be confident. we can walk through this world with heads and hearts held high as daughters of the King. daughters who are messy and broken. with Him, we are transformed into beautiful simply because we are His. understand your identity in Him and the beauty and freedom He bestows on us and the love He extends to us.
we can look at those magazines in the checkout line at walmart, roll our eyes, and see it for exactly what it is. lies. and the porn industry, recognize it for exactly what it is. lies. well, lies coupled with lots of unattractive-in-real-life disease infested people.
true beauty is found on the inside. when we allow Him to guide us, mold us, to cleanse our hearts of anything that doesn't please Him...when we do all that, it's reflected on the outside. we should base our self-worth on nothing more and nothing less an Christ, in His magnificent love for us and how He demonstrated that through His death and resurrection. we are beautiful on the inside and outside when we acknowledge Christ's deep and abiding love for us. love that doesn't change with our accomplishments or appearance. He loves me in spite of my scars, booty, nose, bags under my eyes and droopy eyelids. His love is always, always, forever there...accepting us exactly for who we are.
you're the love of His heart.
out for now