Verse Of The Day

Sunday, October 7, 2012

WIVES BODY IMAGE ISSUES: A HUSBANDS VIEW


This may be dangerous ground but I will try to tread lightly.  What comes to my mind right now is that fools rush in where angels fear to tread. Well, I pray I am no fool. Just a husband trying to help others. For the handful of readers that will come back tomorrow for day 8 of the Christian Marriage Bloggers Association 1/2 marathon challenge, I say thank you. This post may run a few people off or make some mad. That is never my intention or my heart. I only want to help your marriage and get your brain thinking. Ok, here goes.

The body image war is waged in our minds by the thoughts we hold captive. The though of not being pretty enough or not measuring up is not from God. Those thoughts are from Satan and his demons. It is said that beauty is only skin deep but ugly goes to the bone. I believe that we have been deceived as to what true beauty is. To quote our pastor, Duane Sheriff, the world says beauty is a blond-Cambodian-refuge-lookalike. When we look to the world for our acceptance, we will always see a flawed version of the truth.

Satan uses the media (TV, magazines, music, music videos, social media, etc.) to tell our ladies that if they do not look like the image being portrayed then they are not beautiful. Over the past few decades this influence has grown rampant. Our young daughters are even caught up in this deception. They are told to look like Taylor Swift, Miley Cyrus or Britney Spears then they do not fit in and they are not beautiful. Our wives are told to wear these clothes, her hair like this and this brand of jewelry will make her even more beautiful. The Bible tells us not to look to outer adornments for our beauty. 1 Peter 3:3-4 "Your beauty should not come from outward adornment, such as braided hair and the wearing of gold jewelry and fine clothes. Instead, it should be that of your inner self, the unfading beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit, which is of great worth in God’s sight." I firmly believe it is not a sin to wear the items mentioned above. But we should not look to them to make us beautiful. We are to look to God for all we need.

I believe Satan uses the worlds definition of beauty to come between a husband and wife. Most women have one or more body parts they would like to "fix". They believe their breasts are too small or large, their hips are too large, cheek bones not high enough, their weight is either too high or too low, etc. etc. etc. They see the airbrushed models who do not have the stretch marks, C-Section scars or extra weight of childbirth, their hair flowing perfectly down their tan back and perfect makeup. Most women, and men, are intimidated by this person. However, this image of the perfect woman is a lie. The perfect woman is the one we married. At least she is perfect for her husband.The average woman is 5' 4" and 140 lbs. not 5' 11" and 115 lbs. like the airbrushed models who starve themselves just to have their picture taken and be on the magazine cover. Eating disorders are becoming the norm for more and more young women trying to live up to the worlds standards. Scientists have even given this a label, Body Dysmorphic Disorder or BDD. Body Dysmorphic Disorder has been called "imagined ugliness" because the appearance issues the person is obsessing about usually are so small that others don't even notice them. Or, if others do notice them, they consider them minor.

If our wife does not believe she is beautiful she is less willing to be undressed in front of us. She will be less willing to be intimate with us. This is tough for her husband since he wants to see her naked and make love to her. Her husband could even start to believe that his wife does not love him anymore. The low self image wife will spend hours getting herself ready to go outside her home and would never go the grocery store without  her makeup and hair fixed just right. There might be someone there who she knows that could see her. When our wife sees herself as less than beautiful she believes that we see her the same way she sees herself. We know this is not true.

I will jump on the hand grenade here. Body issue images are when we look to our own image for acceptance and not to God.   It is selfish because we are putting acceptance for ourself above being accepted by God as His child. When this happens we are putting ourself before God. This is never good: Have no idol, beauty can become an idol that we worship. The world sure worships their standard of beauty.

What's a guy to do? Is there anything we as husbands and fathers can do to thwart this attack on our wife and daughters?  Yes. We must stand against Satan so he is not able to convince our wife and daughters that the worlds standard of beauty is the one they should compare themselves to. If we, as husbands and fathers, do not take this stand and fight then we are to blame. As the spiritual leader of our homes, it is our God given duty to let our wife and daughters know they are beautiful. We must speak God's word over them and to them so they will believe just how beautiful they are to us and to God.

I do believe that some wives have an issue with their body image because of their husband. He looks extra long at the pretty lady that comes into his line of sight. Mark 9:47 "And if your eye causes you to sin, pluck it out. It is better for you to enter the kingdom of God with one eye than to have two eyes and be thrown into hell." Some  husbands tell their wife that she should look like someone else. Or he tells her that a certain part of her body is not like he wants it to be. Husbands, never, ever compare your spouse with another woman. 1 Corinthians 7:2 "But since there is so much immorality, each man should have his own wife, and each woman her own husband."Husbands, we must tell our wife and our daughters how beautiful they are several time a day. Daughters look to their father as a guide when choosing who to date - then marry. We must keep our eyes pure. No emotional affairs. No pornography, that is cheating. 

If we look at ourselves and believe we are not beautiful, then we are saying that God is not beautiful. We are made in His image. Genesis 1:26 says that we are made in God's image and likeness. Then God said, “Let us make mankind in our image, in our likeness, so that they may rule over the fish in the sea and the birds in the sky, over the livestock and all the wild animals, and over all the creatures that move along the ground.”

But can we use our beauty for God's glory. Yes, it may sound like an oxymoron. Ester was a beautiful queen, or a beauty queen, so to speak. She was able to use her beauty to save Israel by using her beauty with the king. We are not to see our beauty as a tool to get what we want or who we want. We are to be humble and submissive to God in all we do. Being the salt of the earth is being beautiful in God's eyes. And he and your husband are the only ones that matter.

Like the stars in the heavens, our inner beauty should display the wonders and majesty of God. He named everyone of them and he knew you before you were born. He knows you're beautiful.

We are praying for your marriage.

20 comments:

  1. Replies
    1. Thanks J.
      I appreciate your input and your great posts.
      God Bless,

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  2. Amen! Thanks for the empowering message!

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  3. I couldn't agree more! My wife is the perfect woman for me, and it wouldn't matter if she weighed 100 lbs or 300 lbs.

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  4. Great post, Steve! I really appreciated what you said about husbands/fathers taking a stand and telling their wives/daughters they are beautiful and that their standard of beauty should not be measured by what the world says beauty is. I battled insecurities about my body for years and I'm so grateful that God has used my husband to help me claim victory over the Devil's lies. My husband calls me beautiful daily and it does wonders for my confidence.

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    Replies
    1. Praise God for you overcoming this issue. I do believe Satan is using this issue to destroy marriages and our daughters.
      God Bless,

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  5. I wrote an article about this over the weekend as well - I had a little extra time on Saturday, and this is a topic that is very close to my heart, a topic that I am extremely passionate about. Here's the link: http://forhehasbeengoodtome.blogspot.com/2012/10/beauty-and-self-esteem.html

    The post is titled, "Beauty and Self-Esteem." I talk about ways that husbands can avoid the sexual input that detracts from their marriage, and I talk about ways that wives can gain peace of mind and increase their self-confidence. I hope it helps someone!

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    Replies
    1. Thanks Jenny,
      Love your posts. Several great reads.
      God Bless,

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    2. By the way, I love how you said, "this image of the perfect woman is a lie. The perfect woman is the one we married. At least she is perfect for her husband." And I LOVE your use of scripture. Something my husband will tell me, with a loving look in his eyes, is "Your breasts satisfy me always." (From the Bible verse.) He is talking about more than just my breasts, of course. I wish that all women had husbands who believe what you have said in this post, and I wish that all women believed that about themselves.

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  6. The best thing a husband can do is often and sincerely tell his wife how beautiful she is, let his eyes linger on her. Stare at her from across the room. Let your eyes not wander to other men's wives and father's daughters. Also, invest in her beauty...the things she desires to help keep up appearances such as getting hair cuts at a good salon and making sure she has decent clothes for the various seasons a woman goes through. Hubby always encourages me to make sure I have clothing that fits whatever stage I am at in life.

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    Replies
    1. I love looking at my wife - God gave me a good thing!
      You are correct about the wondering eyes. Those ladies are God's daughters before they are our daughters and / or wife.
      God Bless,

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  7. For as much as I preach about sex in my blog, I still needed to hear this once again!! I struggle with body image issues because my horomones are totally out of whack and I'm currently HUGE. However, my husband assures me all the time that I'm still beautiful to him and he knows it is not me that is causing the issue. He's gone to doctors with me to try and get the issue fixed, but we keep hitting a brick wall over it. (Except when I was pregnant, but now that I'm not pregnant, I can't see the same doctor who realized I had a horomone imbalance.)

    My self image has come between us even on a tiny level, and for me that's big enough to cause me to struggle even more. (You'd have to read my blog to understand what I mean by that one..to many details to post here.) Thank you for this post.

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    Replies
    1. Crystal,
      Your husband is awesome for going with you to the doctors to help you. Please remember, always, that we are made in God's image - He only makes beautiful things. God saw all that He had made and it was very good - Gen 1:31.
      Keep rebuking Satan - he is the father of lies and he wants to steal, kill and destroy your marriage.
      God Bless,

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  8. Very thought-provoking. Every woman wants to feel irresistible to her man. Sometimes we get in our own way. It takes a special kind of man to coax his wife out of that shame-filled guilt-ridden mindset, but if you say it often enough - and mean it, she'll come around me. At least, I did :)

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    1. Thanks Lisa,
      You are correct and every husband want to feel irresistable to his wife also. It's a two way street.
      If every husband would pray for their wife to see themselves as God seem them, this would be much less of an issue.
      Thanks for your comment.
      God Bless,
      Steve

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  9. Good post Steve! I've been telling my wife for quite a while now that she's THE most beautiful woman in the world. It's taken her a bit, but she's finally beginning to believe it!

    Gentlemen, if you aren't telling your wife the same, then shame on you! She NEEDS to hear HER man tell her she's beautiful... in pretty much the same way that most of you guys need to hear your wife lift you up and admire you.

    Like Steve said in the post, the media has distorted and destroyed REAL beauty, and impersonated it with a garbled-up counterfeit. Satan is all about counterfeiting what God creates. Well... my wife was a "hot babe" when I married her on my 21st birthday, and she's STILL a smokin' hot babe more than 25 years later!

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    Replies
    1. Thanks Jason,
      You are correct - Satan pays in counterfeit money. Our wives and daughters are worth our praise.
      I tell my bride and daughters they are God's creation and He does not make junk.
      God only makes things perfect and they are perfect no matter what the world says.
      God Bless,
      Steve

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  10. Thank you so much for this encouragement. Just found your blog through twitter and see I follow a lot of my favorite ones that commented here on your post. Thank goodness Jason chimed in too :-) Can't see any reason for one to be offended at this post. I struggle with this as I've negleted to care for myself around my mid thirties when it became not as easy to keep the weight off. I will say its something I hope to overcome but my husband has never made me feel unattractive because of it. Thanks for the encouragement.

    Lisa

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