We live in a culture that idolizes physical beauty. Health is discarded as we try to achieve a figure that our society considers attractive. Eating disorders are common as women struggle to maintain unrealistic body proportions. We are confronted everyday with advertisements trying to sell us products to slow our aging or club memberships to sculpt the perfect body.
We know as well as the writer of Proverbs that outward beauty is fleeting. There is no magic pill to turn back the clock. The challenge is to shift our focus. God sees a heart that reverences him as the most important thing. So we need to stand apart from our culture and show a different perspective. We need to be careful that God is the focus of our lives and that we are not making youth and beauty idols in our lives.
Of course it is important to maintain the health of our bodies; we want to care for the bodies that God has given us. Our outward appearance should never take priority over maintaining our spiritual health.
So where is your focus? Are you focused on what our culture tells us to worry about? Are you taking your cues from what God says in the Bible? God tells us that society may look at outward beauty, but he looks at the heart.
Do we have unrealistic expectations for our spouse? Do we expect our spouse to maintain a perfect body? Our body image can sometimes take a beating as our bodies change over the years. We can be hard on ourselves for carrying extra pounds. Will we remember our vows to love our spouse through whatever life brings? Our spouse needs our love and acceptance to know that the outward stuff is not as important as what is on the inside.
Are you focusing on God's priorities or on what the world considers valuable? Are you working on building your spiritual muscles?
Lord, Help us to avoid the distraction of our cultures view of beauty and to focus on having a heart that loves you above all. Help us to love our spouse unconditionally.