Thursday, May 14, 2009

Platforms, Pageants, and Purity

Upon reading this, I couldn't help but think about the recent celebrity of Miss California. I'm not sure if I have seen evangelicals run to the support of someone so quickly... well, at least in the recent past.

After saying that it is nice for folks to have a choice in whom they marry in this country, but sharing her personal opinion on same-sex marriage, the evangelical applause was overwhelming. So many were so quick, though, to rally around this young woman for her opinion that marriage should be between a man and woman only.

I'm wondering if some Christians have lost a little perspective. Here is a participant in a scholarship programbeauty pageant, and despite the poor message this sends to younger girls and the world about what true feminine beauty is, we praise it? Besides that, there was no look into her person. Within hours of her statements, racy photos were released, and I'm thinking to myself, "Is this who I want to point out to my daughter as someone that she should be like?!"

And I'll say very quickly that I don't. I'm grateful for Carolyn McCulley's post today reminding men that they have the opportunity to praise women- but not for their beauty on the outside, but what's on the inside. How hard is it to raise our little girls to believe that it's what is on the inside that counts, when we're bombarded with ideal images of women?! It is hard to reconcile in your mind that what's inside holds higher value when we are complimented on beauty more than the purity and substance of our character.

I know that personally, the most precious compliments to me are not the ones where my husband has complimented me on what's on the outside (though welcomed and appreciated). What really stands out to me is if my character is noticed. If that is seen then I have reached far greater riches than looking nice. For my person is glorifying God.

I have a different view on what would be more valuable of Miss Prejean's time and energy, but it's her choice. And I pray that when the lights and publicity fade, and she is left with just who she is before no one else but the Lord, that she can be proud of who she is, not by her own standards, but those of her Creator. Based on the information before me, though, I will not put her on any platform for myself or my daughter to follow. Posing topless and entering beauty pageants are not goals I have for my daughter, no matter how conservative her views on marriage are, and those things are not good for marriage either (Seriously, do we need any more temptations for wandering eyes, and unrealistic views of feminine beauty and sex appeal?). This doesn't exemplify the Biblical femininity that we as believers should embrace and uphold.

Instead, I will strive to put forth the standards of God's word. And I will endeaver to put those at the forefront of my mind for myself as well.

God is glorified...

...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 very precious.
1 Peter 3:2-4

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