You know how on Facebook, they have those “people you may know” suggestions on the right side? The other day I had a repeat of one and figured I’d see who they were, figuring that if they showed up twice, I must know them, right? Nope, I didn’t know her. But it was interesting because not only did I not know her, but it sparked some frustration in me and a bad feeling about even being on her site.
First, let me explain that I’m a guy who actually does NOT like beauty pageants. Why? Well, for one, I find it degrading to women. Seriously. Besides the fact that I’ve done several papers while in Seminary on gender equality within the Church and Body of Christ, as well as picked up the need for boundaries (physically, spiritually, visually, emotionally, and mentally), I’m also very happily married, and honestly don’t think it’s right or even healthy for me to look at other women trotting around in high heels and barely anything on.
Now, I know, some of you may say that beauty pageants are not about degrading women or about how sexy or hot they look in a bikini, but about their intelligence, fitness, and goals in life. Really? Because not all those women appear to be all that bright (have you heard their answers to the questions?), and honestly, I can’t recall any time when a 200 or 300 pound woman won, competed, or even qualified for such a ranked pageant.
So anyway, back to Facebook. So this woman whose name continued to show up on my “people you may know” list, turned out to be an IL pageant winner. Congratulations to her. But to make matters worse (maybe just in my eyes?), she wasn’t “MISS Illinois”, but “MRS. Illinois”. Why is that worse? Because it’s bad enough for somebody to be “checking out” a single woman with a lustful eye, but even worse to be doing the same for a married woman. Why? Well, for starters, Jesus mentioned (Matthew 5:27-28) that if you’re even looking lustfully at a woman, you’ve already committed adultery with her in your heart. Then He goes into explaining how deadly sin really is, for if for instance, your right eye causes you to sin, it’s better to pluck it out than risk going to hell with two good eyes. So by even looking at a woman in that way could cause you to sin against your wife, the woman you’re looking at, her husband, your own heart, and most of all, God. What’s also bad about this is that the woman who’s dressing like this for the attention of others is also guilty of sin, for as Jesus said again in Matthew 18:6-7, “If anyone causes one of these little ones—those who believe in me—to stumble, it would be better for them if a large millstone were hung around their neck and they were drowned in the depths of the sea. Woe to the world because of the things that cause people to stumble! Such things must come, but woe to the person through whom they come!” Then Jesus AGAIN talks about how terrible sin is with the whole “if it causes you to sin, cut it off” spiel.
I’ll explain this too: When a man and woman marry, their bodies are no longer just their own, but now belong to each other. There’s a covenant that takes place in marriage, between you, your spouse, and the Lord (if neither of you knows God, nor did you marry in a church, then maybe it’s just between you and your spouse). But now, the ONLY person who should be seeing you with barely anything on should be your spouse. Now don’t get me wrong here, I’m not saying that women should wear those gowns that Muslim women wear or men huge baggy clothes (although the Bible does talk about wearing “modest” clothing when in public). All I’m saying is that if you’re going to wear something sexy or exposing, it should only be for the sake, eyes, and in the presence of your spouse.
For example: Before I was married, I was happy about taking off my shirt in public (unless I was around youth from my previous churches). Since getting married, I now actually feel weird about taking my shirt off in public, and prefer not to. Don’t get me wrong. I work out, I take care of myself, I keep fit and my wife thinks I look great, but even based on her compliments, my wife is the only one I want to display it for. Heck, why should I even WANT to display it for anybody else? For attention? What sort of attention from anybody other than my wife could be good for our marriage and covenant? As the old song goes, “For your eyes only, only for you…”(It’s stuck in your mind now, isn’t it?) I don’t NEED to hear it from anybody else, only my wife, for it’s HER that I try to look good for (and myself, for I’ll get depressed and/or mad if I ‘let myself go’ for too long without working out).
So my take on the matter of the pageant is that it’s bad enough that single women pose in sexy outfits with the intention of attempting to prove to others their worthiness of taking on the crown of being the most “beautiful” woman in the land. But it’s worse for a married woman to be doing the same, for the only 2 men in her life qualified to announce her as beautiful are her spouse and the Lord. Anybody else’s opinion is a sinful intrusion upon the covenant that she made with her husband, especially if they’re basing their opinions on the way she looks in the attire that only her husband should see her in.