Volume 1, Issue 5 (October 24, 2013)
Beauty is in the Eye of the Beholder
“Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things” (Philippians 4:8).
Personal Reflection: Girls like to look “pretty.” As little girls, our moms dressed us up and did our hair so that we would look pretty. There’s something ingrained in us to look pretty, even at a very early age.
While watching our 2-year-old granddaughter, Julia, for the day, she decided to follow me all around our home. Being on the petite side, Julia grabbed a little step stool and toted it around with her, so she could climb up to “see what I was doing,” as she put it. Coming a little early that morning, Julia followed me into the bathroom and watched me as I got ready for our day. She climbed up on the step stool and watched as I brushed my teeth and fixed my hair. During this time, she began to rummage through my vanity draw (now that should tell you something right there—“vanity” drawer). In an instant, Julia pulled out a bright pink polish from the drawer and asked me to paint her nails. Amazingly, she sat very still as we both enjoyed every minute of painting her tiny toe nails a pretty shiny pink! She then followed me (step stool in hand) to the Powder Room, where I keep all my makeup. Sure enough, she climbed up on the step stool next to me, and watched my every move, from foundation to mascara. Every step of the way, Julia wanted to try some of each. Obliging just a little, I let her try out some foundation, some blush, and a little lip gloss. She was so proud of herself, as she carefully smeared the gloss across her lips and under her nose and across her chin! She was so cute. In fact, in my eyes, she was (is) beautiful, in her sweet innocence…..“just because” she’s my granddaughter.
Here are a few thoughts to ponder as we raise little ones to know and love Jesus.
The world shouts loudly that beauty is measured by outward appearance. (The Hardy’s commercials that are supposedly advertising hamburgers, offer women revealing way too much. This not only degrades the true beauty of women, but also attempts to rob young boys of their innocence.) The so-called beauty industry is a multi-billion dollar business, with a large marketing campaign targeted toward young teen girls.
God measures “true and lasting beauty” by what’s in our hearts.
“The Lord does not look at the things people look at. People look at the outward appearance, but the Lord looks at the heart” (1 Samuel 16:7b).
As mothers, we need to ask ourselves. Are we modeling modesty and other godly characteristics before our children? We all have eyes that are watching us (just like my Julia).
This simple example of my granddaughter wanting to “follow” and “watch” Nana throughout our day together has a far greater message than just a little girl wanting to wear some makeup and look pretty. It signifies the awesome responsibility we have as moms/parents, to intentionally train our children to live a life that is pleasing to the Lord. One of the best ways we can do this is to set Christlike examples before them.
Parent Challenge: Training young boys and girls the importance of purity begins early. Set the example in your own life by keeping your mind free from impure thoughts, images, and any other source that are unpleasing to the Lord. Also, model modesty in the clothing you wear. Listen to Casting Crowns’ Slow Fade, their version of “Be Careful Little Eyes…” http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QASREBVDsLk
Faith Forward: Monitor every bit of media that your child has access to, starting with the TV (Disney is not your grandmother’s or even your mother’s Disney!). Beware of the Internet. What God can and does use for good, the devil will attempt his best to use for evil. Tell your sons and daughters every day how beautiful/handsome they are…just because they are your kids…and because God created them in His image.
“So God created mankind in his own image, in the image of God he created them; male and female he created them” (Genesis 1:27).
“I will be careful to lead a blameless life—
when will you come to me?
I will conduct the affairs of my house
with a blameless heart.
3 I will not look with approval
on anything that is vile.
I hate what faithless people do;
I will have no part in it.
4 The perverse of heart shall be far from me;
I will have nothing to do with what is evil” (Psalm 101:2-4).
Passport 2 Purity: The Passport2Purity Getaway Kit helps build heart-to-heart communication between you and your pre-teen while laying a foundation of purity that will prepare them for the turbulent years ahead. (For preteen girls and boys)
Pure Freedom (the ministry of Dannah Gresh): An online ministry for parents of pre-teen and teenage girls. They also offer Secret Keeper Girl Tours. www.purefreedom.org
Net Nanny: Net Nanny® is the #1-rated parental controls software that protects families from pornography, online predators, cyberbullying, and much more, keeping your family safe online. http://www.netnanny.com
Tried & True Ideas from Others:
Two of our grandkids live 2 1/2 hours away. We meet half way to bring them home with us. Our grandson loves What’s in the Bible DVDs. We have a DVD player in the van so this makes a great time for him to watch these from time to time. Literally this is “on the go.” These DVDs are a great way to teach your children and grandchildren about the Bible! http://whatsinthebible.com/
I researched this resource online, and it looks like a fun way for the whole family to learn the Bible together. What’s in the Bible? is a 13-DVD series from VeggieTales® creator Phil Vischer. In his first new project since VeggieTales, Vischer has set out to teach kids (and parents!) the story of the Bible.