2 Suggestions for the Conversation on Christians Attending to Their Physical Appearance
I agree with the thoughts offered by the 2 bloggers linked above, but would like to offer 2 suggestions for any bloggers or pastors addressing this issue:
1. Make application to both spouses equally. I notice that Challies does address a paragraph in his article to husbands, saying (in part), "It is not just women who ought to make a continued effort to be attractive and appealing and dignified." But in many articles and sermons this word to husbands seems to be an afterthought if it is mentioned at all. If the principles about physical attractiveness offered by Challies, Kassian, and others are biblical (and I think that they are), I can see no reason why they would not apply to both spouses equally.
2. Make it clear that a lack of attending to physical attractiveness offers absolutely no excuse for infidelity. Challies and Kassian mention that "a wife’s effort to be beautiful for her husband speaks of her care and respect for him, and communicates her desire to be sexually attractive and available for him," and I've heard some preachers/teachers take this line of reasoning and assert that a wife's lack of attention to her appearance may provide a temptation for a man to commit adultery. But, on final analysis, it should be recognized that a wife's physical appearance has virtually no correlation to whether a husband will be tempted to adultery: if it did, then we would see no infidelity among all those gorgeous Hollywood couples! In reality, infidelity is an issue of the heart, and, while there may be reasons for preachers/teachers to exhort their congregation/students to honor their spouses by paying some attention to their physical appearance, there are deeper principles of commitment that will govern whether, overall, marriages are faithful and healthy.
Labels: Christian worldview