Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Beauty and the Beast

A couple of weeks ago I had the opportunity to hear Vonda Skinner Skelton again, who was doing an event at Mt. Pisgah United Methodist Church in the Atlanta area. Vonda is the author of several books including Seeing through the Lies, Unmasking the Myths Women Believe. I’ve known her for several years, but had only heard her speak at writer’s conferences. As always, she was her very funny self, but she also really speaks to women’s hearts.

One of Vonda’s messages is about our ideas concerning beauty. She said that when she was growing up she was everything beauty was not. Now, I’ve always thought Vonda a very attractive woman, but she went on to explain. She said that beauty was tall, and she was short. Beauty was blond, and she had dark hair. You get the idea. What she meant is she didn’t measure up to the culture’s idea of beauty. And she pointed out; we can hardly ever keep up with that, because the culture’s idea about beauty is always changing. She performed her skit from the Song of Solomon, which portrays in a comical way the idea of beauty in Solomon’s time. If you’ve not seen her do this, I’ll provide the link at the end of this blog. It’s hysterical, yet full of truth.

As a breast cancer survivor, one of the things I’ve had to deal with is body image. Breasts are one of the ways our culture defines feminine beauty, so how does a survivor handle what can be a beast of cultural ideas?

Although every woman who loses a breast is going to go through a grieving period, the way to fight the beast is to focus on what lasts. Proverbs 31:30 says, “…beauty is fleeting; but a woman who fears the Lord is to be praised.” All of the outward beauty on which our culture puts so much emphasis, is going away, but the inward beauty we allow God to develop in us lasts forever. Tony Campolo has said that in our culture we’ve swapped all the price tags. Indeed we have in so many ways. We often value the temporal, to the exclusion of the eternal.

For me, it helped enormously to have a husband who told me several times a day how beautiful he thought I was. Even with years flying by, and wrinkles accumulating, I still believe him. Jerry’s opinion is but a reflection of God’s view of me, and the God who created me thinks I’m his lovely handiwork--no matter how many body parts I lose on this earth. And that's what really slays the beast!

You will find Vonda’s “Solomon’s Beloved” at or you can visit her at her website Enjoy!

1 comment:

Vonda Skelton said...

Oh, thank you for your kind words, Beverly! I love sharing Solomon's Beloved when talking about beauty. After all, we'd much rather have laugh lines than frown lines, right? :-)

Praising God for your healing!

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