The Comparison Game | Day Seven
By: Megan Gover | To download the first week of this study, click here.
“If a soul has any beauty, it is because Christ has endowed that soul with His own, for in ourselves we are deformed and defiled! There is no beauty in any of us but what our Lord has worked in us.” – Charles Spurgeon
When I was younger, my greatest insecurity and deepest desire were completely focused on my outward appearance. Therefore, my comparisons heavily revolved around my looks. Maybe, just maybe, you can relate with me in this struggle! Therefore, today, we are going to address the very lies we believe about beauty and assure ourselves with the truth from our Author of Beauty.
As we start today’s look at how we compare our beauty, it’s going to require a lot of vulnerability. Ask the Lord to help you gain a healthy perspective on outward appearance.
How does the world define beauty? What characteristics do they deem beautiful?
Who sets these standards? Why do we feel the need to abide by them?
How have you seen the world’s standard of beauty effect the way you view your beauty?
How have you seen either yourself or others compromise their health and conviction in order to obtain the world’s persona of beauty?
Let’s turn to 1 Samuel 16. Because context is key, let’s figure out what’s going on in this chapter. The Lord rejected King Saul as king and sent Samuel to find and anoint a new king—one seeking after God’s own heart. Therefore, the Lord sends Samuel to Bethlehem to anoint one of Jesse’s sons to become the new royalty. After viewing Jesse’s many sons, Samuel believes Eliab is the new king-to-be due to his physique.
Now read 1 Samuel 16:7.
What was Samuel gauging Eliab by? What does the Lord look at?
Praise the Lord He doesn’t measure beauty by our cat-eye eyeliner masterpiece or Kylie Jenner sized lips! For if we are honest with ourselves, the world’s persona of beauty is ever changing and never satisfying.
Though the Lord doesn’t gauge beauty by our appearance, measuring our looks against an unachievable standard can easily make us feel disqualified from the world’s definition of beauty. Do you feel disqualified from the world’s standard of beauty? If so, why?
Has anyone (a family member, friend, classmate, etc.) ever commented on your body in a negative manner? If so, did you allow it to shape your thoughts about your appearance? How so?
If someone has ever commented on your beauty in a negative way, I encourage you to stop and pray for this person. Whether their comment was purposeful or accidental, ask the Lord to help you forgive them for what they said and to help you replace lies with truth.
How do you often compare your beauty in an inferior way? (You’re down on the teeter-totter, looking up to others.)
How do you compare your beauty in a superior way? (You’re up on the teeter- totter, looking down on others.)
Who do you often compare your beauty to? (Celebrities, friends, family members, etc.)
Turn to Proverbs 31:30. Write this verse out.
What is charm? What does this have to do with beauty?
What does fleeting mean?
How does it contradict the world’s definition of beauty? How does this verse give you hope?
What does it mean to fear the Lord? And why is this quality praiseworthy?
The fear referenced here is referring to a holy respect and reverence towards the Lord. Your love for the Lord reflects His goodness.
Lastly, let’s read 1 Peter 3:3-4.
What should not define our beauty? Are those things naturally bad or evil? If not, why are we warned of placing confidence in those things?
How is beauty reflected in your inner self? What does a gentle and quiet spirit mean?
This verse isn’t saying beautiful people don’t talk, laugh, or make noises! Rather, it hints at a quiet confidence that radiates powerful peace. In a world full of chaos, chattiness, and conceit, the beauty the Lord desires is a soul reflecting Him!
For example, have you ever known someone who is beautiful by the world’s standards, but is so mean, vulgar, and rude that you don’t want to be around them? True beauty is not just seen; it is felt.
How can you begin to seek the unfading beauty—which is of great worth in God’s sight?
While the world often uses outward appearance to gauge beauty, the Lord looks at our heart—the very way we love, care, and see those around us—as a definition of our soul’s beauty and appeal. Ask the Lord to help you gauge your worth and beauty by being loved by Him, as well as reciprocating His kindness to others!