|Thomson's Falls, Nyahururu Kenya|
For the past two weeks, the main topics of discussion were 'Avoiding Self-Destruction' and 'Avoiding the Destruction of Others'. For starters, these themes required a whole load of honesty from everyone within the group; honesty to oneself, to God and to the rest of the group. It was no easy feat, but since the study began a few weeks ago, we've all gotten rather close and that makes it easier to open up. Also, the key issues discussed in these sessions were not entirely new concepts, but they were very insightful.
Under the first topic on avoiding self-destruction, one of the key things discussed was 'Making Friends with the Mirror'. If we are all honest with ourselves as ladies, it is safe to say that at one point or another in our lifespans, we have all disliked this, that or the other about ourselves. For some of us, the insecurities come and go, but for others, there may be years of struggle. Sometimes, these insecurities come from within, while other times, the media and those around us may make us feel "ugly" and "inadequate" based on the world's standards of beauty. Whatever the case, it is important to focus on God's perspective, rather than that of men.
So let's take it from God's perspective. Psalm 139:13-14 says, "For you created my inmost being; You knit me together in my mother's womb. I praise you for I am fearfully and wonderfully made; Your works are wonderful, I know that full well." Here, the psalmist, David, expresses his understanding of himself. Unlike most of us, he wasn't shy to recognize the fact that God took His time to create man, and by virtue of this, it is safe to say that we are wonderful! It's not enough to just say it though, we ought to believe it in our hearts. Only then will we be able to fully beat down our insecurities.
Fun fact: What did David mean by saying he was "fearfully" made? The Hebrew word that is translated “fearfully” is yare. In Vine’s Dictionary it means “to be afraid, stand in awe, fear”. When used of an exalted person it means “standing in awe”. This implies honor, reverence and respect for the person. To be “fearfully” made means to be “awesomely” made. Yes, you are AWESOME! Ken-ya believe it?? ;-)
On the topic of avoiding the destruction of others, two key things that we looked at were flirting and dressing to impress. Flirting is one of those things that may come naturally, especially during the adolescent years. Young ladies want to get noticed by the guys, and if they don't, they tend to "help" the guys take notice by their words and their body language; this is usually where suggestive dressing comes in as well. The tops get lower, as the skirts rise higher. Most times, the young lady may have no intention of pursuing anything with the man she's flirting with; she just does it for the attention. What many of us forget is that guys are very easily aroused by visual things, therefore, it would be highly unadvisable to light a fire that you won't be able to put out. Do not flirt with a guy and expect that he won't act on his passions. Be your brother's keeper; do not be a stumbling block to him.
In conclusion, we all agreed that we would strive to live like Proverbs 31 women; desiring to be beautiful from the inside out, and not using what we have to manipulate others, rather to build up God's kingdom.
"Charm is deceptive, and beauty is fleeting; but a woman who fears the LORD is to be praised."