Women Under Pressure To Conform, and Miserable
Is the pressure to conform today greater than our inward beliefs?
As Christian women, we believe God’s sacred intent for every young woman is to think and act to reflect His glory to a dying, lost world. It brings a distinct blessing to our families and to our homes.
Yet the post-modern world is telling us its own confused version about what it means to be a woman. It says, “If you’ve got it, flaunt it!” And many Christian women (and their mothers) are buying it. The pressure to conform starts young!
I may be wrong, but I believe many – if not most – young girls today are conflicted, feel tremendous pressure to conform, and may, if pressed, admit to being miserable. We are inadvertently sexualizing our children by listening to and buying into the world’s values.
Karen, a friend of mine, sent me this re-working of the popular music video What Makes You Beautiful. Some Paladin varsity players, coaches, and parents felt they could use the basis of this song to make a statement. These young men have the right idea, and I think this will make you smile. Listen to these young mens’ words:
…Girls with integrity are so hard to find these days…
…if only you saw what I could see, you’d understand why I need your modesty…
…we don’t know why you’d want a guy, who only cares what he sees with his eyes…
…virtue is so beautiful…you gotta know, modesty is so beautiful…
The world tells us one thing; God’s Word tells us something radically different:
The world says…You must be flawless – like the airbrushed models. God says…You are beautiful and there is no blemish in you. (Song of Songs 4:7)
The world says…You must be tall and thin – like Barbie. God says…People judge by outward appearance, but I look at the heart. You are made wonderfully complex. (Psalm 139:14, 1 Samuel 16:7)
The world says… You’re not cool if you’re not a size 0; just stop eating. God says…The loathing of food will lead to death’s gate. (Psalm 107:18)
The world says…Food makes you feel better; indulge yourself. God says…I alone satisfy your hungry soul and fill it with good food. (Psalm 107:9)
The world says…If you don’t have all the right curves in all the right places, you can pay for them. God says…You are being renewed as you learn to know me and become like Me. I paid for it all. (Colossians 3:10, Galatians 1:4)
The world says…You must act perfectly, too. God says…My grace is all you need. My power is made perfect in weakness. (2 Corinthians 12:9)
The world says…Follow the tricks of the trade, and you will be beautiful. God says…Don’t copy the behavior and rituals of this world, but let Me transform you into a new person by changing the way you think. Then you will learn to know My good and pleasing and perfect will for you. (Romans 12:2)
The world says…Opinions and approval of others matter most. God says…Do your best so you can present yourself to Me and receive My approval. (2 Timothy 2:15)
The world says…Don’t hate me because I’m beautiful. God says…Don’t think you are better than you really are. Be honest in your evaluation of yourself, measuring yourself by the faith I have given you. (Romans 12:3)
The world says…Fear rejection. God says…The fear of rejection will trap you. (Proverbs 29:25)
The world says…Looks are everything. God says…Charm is deceitful and beauty is vain, But a woman who fears the LORD, she shall be praised. (Proverbs 31:30)
The world says…Trust me; you can have it all! God says… Trust in Me. I will work all things out for the good. (Romans 8:28)
The world says…You can do what you want—it’s your body. God says…I bought you at a high price. Honor Me with your body. (1 Corinthians 6:20)
The world says…Your confidence is found in your appearance. God says…I am your confidence. I will keep your foot from being caught. (Proverbs 3:26)
The world says…It’s okay—it won’t hurt you this one time. God says…Don’t let sin control the way you live. Do not give in to it. (Romans 6:12)
The world says…They’ll never change. God says…Humanly speaking, it is impossible. But not with Me. Everything is possible with Me. (Mark 10:26-27)
The world says…If you can’t beat ‘em join ‘em. God says…I chose you to come out of the world; even before you were born, I chose you and called you by My marvelous grace. (John 15:19, Galatians 1:15)
(Scriptures are excerpted from CCEA Women)
Who Do You Believe? God Or The World?
“Do not be deceived, God is not mocked; for whatever a man sows, this he will also reap. For the one who sows to his own flesh will from the flesh reap corruption, but the one who sows to the Spirit will from the Spirit reap eternal life.…” ~Galatians 6: 7-8
Do you see the pain and hollowness in girls’ eyes today? The hardness we see is a reflection of affections with a world that can never really love them like the lover of our souls.
Pray along with me that our daughters will understand how truly precious they are. Pray that they will become strong women and not accept the world’s pressure to conform. Pray that they will have discernment to see through the lies the world paints for them. May they trade in the misery for joy and peace as they look to Jesus alone.
This book was pivotal for our daughter at a very difficult time in her life.
“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. For this is how the holy women who hoped in God used to adorn themselves…” ~1 Peter 3: 3-5
I am striving for more and more of this dignity and beauty of spirit today. I am throwing off the pressure to conform. Will you run the race with me?
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