Tuesday, November 21, 2006

Beauty: Skin Deep or Deeper?

I wanna challenge you to read EVERY WORD until the end.

Are you ready to take up the challenge? =P

Everyday we're bombarded with images of what the entertainment industry defines as the "ideal" female and male body type. Male models tend to be tall and have sculpted, yet lean muscles; while female models are typically skinny, with long, thin legs, a small waist, bony shoulders, straight narrow hips, flat stomach and butt, and not muscular. Each month headlines about the latest diet, exercise technique, or body fix celebrities use to attain their "ideal" body type, saturate the covers of magazines.

Our perception of beauty is distorted!

Who determines or defines these standards of "beauty"?

Unfortunately, WE do... =/

Every time you buy a magazine, or watch a sitcom or movie, you indirectly support the "look" of the models and actors featured in the publication or production. The entertainment industry will hire men and women who will "sell" the product, whether the product is clothes, food, cosmetics, or even a magazine, movie, or television show.

Women and surprisingly even MEN strive to attain a certain body-weight, regardless of the consequences to their health: the thinner the better for women, the leaner and more muscular for men. Many women dun exercise to be healthy, but rather to be skinny, to attain a certain weight, or to fit into a particular pair of jeans.

Skinniness equals happiness.

Why can't we strive to be healthy?

Why can't we accept whatever our own, healthy body-type may be?

The global reach of Western media (movies, television and magazines) is changing the concept of TRUE BEAUTY. For example, in India, younger women now are obsessed of being skinny. It's beginning to happen everywhere in the world. Eating disorders are on the rise in China. They did this poll in Bali where after Beverly Hills 90210 (an American TV show) had been on TV for a few months, eating disorders tripled in the US.

Girls as young as 12 or 13 are trying to remake themselves. By Form 1, half the girls are already saying that they dun like the way they look. The majority, now, are dieting, using food substitutes in order to lose weight. We see young girls going to extreme measures, using laxatives, or vomiting, or using dieting pills.

Between 50 and 70 percent of girls who describe themselves as overweight are actually of normal weight... *sighs* However, many girls feel pressured to look a certain way. That's a problem, when a girl is looking in the mirror she's seeing a distorted image. That's because of this narrow definition of beauty that's portrayed daily, constantly, on television, she's not seeing the beauty and the strength that we may see. How sad is that??? =(

What women are worth and how women are evaluated are NOT based on their skinniness or fullness, but based on their intelligence, their heart, their spirit, their ability to take risks and be bold!

If women dun respect their bodies and accept themselves the way they are, they're wasting their resources and missing out on more important goals in life. Instead of fixing their bodies, women should start to work on fixing their communities and the whole world.

What's TRUE BEAUTY then?

It's NOT physical appearance.

It's what's found inside, what's in your heart.

Before you read on, pls bear in mind that you've taken up the "challenge" to read EVERY WORD until the end. Pls dun chicken out NOW.

Humility is beautiful. Security and self-esteem are beautiful. And knowing God personally brings beauty, because knowing He loves you and accepts you brings security and self-esteem to your life. That enables you to be free to accept and love yourself and your shortcomings.

Without Christ's forgiveness, our sin makes us ugly on the inside. We're not at peace. All the "cover-up" remedies in the world can't change that. God sees it and others will see it too. Only Christ can make us beautiful in God's sight. True inner beauty begins with God at the center of our lives and grows outward.

Are YOU a believer of Christ?

Jesus loves us more than anyone in this world. He knows us personally, and would like for us to get to know Him better. He died so that we could have eternal life with Him and with the Father. He died so that we could have life, and have it more abundantly here on earth. Jesus has died so that we could be free of every bond, every sickness, and every principality. His gifts are here for YOU. You merely have to accept and receive Jesus as your personal Lord and Savior.

Why is it important to receive Him? Although His gifts are available to everyone, we cannot benefit from them unless we accept it. For example, it's your birthday. Your friend calls you and says, "Hi, Happy Birthday! I've given you a car for your birthday. Come to my house and pick it up. I'll give you the key, the title and the registration. It's yours, free and clear." However, you never go and pick up the car. You never received it from your friend. So you continue to take the bus, ask your friends for rides, take cabs, etc., altho you have a brand new luxury car, waiting for you, at your friend's house. Doesn't make much sense, does it?

But this is how many of us treat our relationship with God. God has made Himself available to all people through the blood of Jesus Christ. There was a time (before Jesus came down from heaven) when only a priest could come into the presence of God (and that was after a great deal of cleansing and atoning rituals). Now, the average person can simply confess their sins and talk to God about anything, anytime, anywhere... all because of Jesus!

Accept this free gift of eternal life today! You won't regret it! ;D

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