Friday, March 13, 2009

Face Lift or Hair Dye?

Women are going to great lengths to look just the way they want to. Some women put on a little mascara and lipstick. Others go to reconstructive surgeries to recreate their own bodies. So what does God think of all this? It is clear that he created women to be beautiful and to want others to think they are beautiful. So what should women take into their own hands and what should be left up to God?

Let's start with the most radical- plastic surgery. Any plastic surgery that alters the way God created you, from a boob job to a nose job, is contrary to God's design for you and is sin. What about age-defying surgery like face lifts? Aging is a part of death and decay, which is a consequence of sin. As far as I can see, staying young in appearance should be seen the same way as staying young in health, as it is combating the consequence of sin. If you endorse heart medication, it is hypocritical to frown upon plastic surgery.

Younger girls blush and their lips redden easily. After a few years of marriage, you may not blush every day when your husband comes home. Simulating this effect with makeup is a way to make him feel special.

Hair dye is another way women alter their appearance. Many women dye to hide the gray. This seems perfectly acceptable under the pretense of fighting the consequences of sin. Others dye because they want a different color. They are saying to God- "You made a mistake in designing me, but I can correct it." Changing your God given hair color is the same as getting a boob job.

There are a few factors to take into consideration in all of this. One is the heart. If you are getting a face lift or putting on make up, is your motivation pleasing God and pleasing your husband? The other major factor is money. I'm sure that at the thought of me endorsing some plastic surgery, many would protest that it costs a lot of money, money that could be better put to use furthering the kingdom of God. This is true. Several native missionaries in Asia could be supported for a year's worth of work with that money. And the money spent on make-up could be used to buy Bibles and New Testaments in countries with little access to Scripture. It is between you and God to decide how much of His money you should spend on your appearance.


  1. Was reading through your other blog... umm, well, I guess this one! Have you considered moving some of these posts to your new blog? I know they're not exactly in the same category, but maybe some of them could be tweaked to fit in more on the Under $1000 blog?

    Also, saw this quote: "As far as I can see, staying young in appearance should be seen the same way as staying young in health, as it is combating the consequence of sin. If you endorse heart medication, it is hypocritical to frown upon plastic surgery."

    Not being snarky, but genuinely interested in your answer.... I remember in your other blog you mentioned that you keep medicaid for emergencies, but pay for your health bills as much as you can upfront. Do you do this because you believe medical treatment and intervention should be extremely limited? I guess I'm asking because I wonder if you would not give heart medication to a child. Or what if the child were diabetic? You didn't really say in the blog that you don't wear make-up so I had a hard time figuring out your exact point of view -- okay with this area of sin, totally against this area of sin, are there gray areas such as a child's health or a younger person being struck with heart disease despite good health?

    My personal belief is that God has empowered doctors with the ability to treat medical conditions of a varying nature and we should avail ourselves of that when it is needed. Unless it is medically necessary I don't see the point in plastic surgery. But I do wear make-up. On the other hand I also bathe, brush my hair and teeth, and wear clothing that is mostly not stained (can't say stain free as I have 5 year old and can be pretty messy in the kitchen myself) and I suppose a person could see those as measures of me trying to change God's image. It is natural that I sleep, right? And, therefore, it would be natural to have morning breath and unkempt hair, right?

    Again, not being snarky, just trying to get a better feel of your stance on the issue -- issues would be more accurate since we're discussing both medical and make-up and how they change us and how that can be seen as going against God's image and therefore sinful.

    TIA for the answer.

  2. I should have also added that I believe we have a responsibility to God to eat well, exercise, seek out preventative health care, dress modestly, etc. So it's not just about seeing the dr when you're on your deathbed or on the verge of a heart attack or whatever, but actually caring for your body so you can carry out God's will for your life.

  3. Okay, this is a complex one, and I didn't actually expect anyone to read this blog. But youth and health is not a guarantee from God. In reality, the only guarantee from God to the world is death and hell for the unredeemed. Mankind has many ways of cheating death and aging for a time, but that doesn't mean it is what God wants from us.

    By all means, if one of my children had a problem that could not be solved with basic health and natural remedies, I would take them to Drs to get it taken care of. God has given man wisdom in the area of natural health and medicinal health for a reason and I am not blanketly opposed to medicine.

    It is the idea that we can cheat God's plan for us, God's plan of aging and death, that I am opposed to. It is also the idea that we say to God that he made a mistake in how he made us.

    As far as basic grooming, I'm all for that. I care about my appearance, and I believe it is Biblical for women to. But I care about it in glorifying what God has given me. I don't want to change how he has made me, but I do want to glorify his creation. Does that all make sense?

  4. My grandfather died at the age of 36 of a heart attack. This was before the days of ambulances and CPR, 1963. He was devout man, loved his wife and his three little boys, he didn't drink and didn't smoke, served his country in both the Pacific and Atlantic theatres during the war, and was a construction contractor--in other words, he had a wife that cooked healthy food (trust me, I've had a mouthful of it and it's still as if my grandmother thinks she's still living off English food rationing and Victory gardens), and received at least six to eight hours a day of hard exercise through his work. After he died, my father and his two brothers (who were 12, 10, and 7) endured nights alone, working at an unacceptably young age, having a mother that was constantly gone, working to make ends meet--often they didn't, and the only compensation my grandmother received was a lousy $55 from the government for the loss of a spouse that kept the world from tyranny...shall I go on with the repercussions of losing the breadwinner, center of the family that loved my grandmother, father, and uncles with all his heart, as Christ loves the Church?
    Heart disease runs in my family--despite healthy living (I run marathons) I, at 27, have the highest triglyceride levels my physician has ever seen. It's heredity. The medication I take for it (the ONLY medication I take, besides supplements such as fish oil) could save my life and prevent taking away me away from my husband and children--is that an example of going against God's will? I strive every day to be a good Christian, to pray to God to redeem me from my sins and forgive those who sin against me. I'd really like to hear your reply.

  5. Patricia, this is what I know: All mankind has sinned. The consequence of sin is death. We are all bound to die. God has allowed for us to understand a lot of types of medicine, and Jesus himself healed, prolonging the inevitable. In one way, I know he is sovereign over what we do in medicine. In another way, by prolonging life, I feel we are saying that God is somehow wrong in his decision that the consequence of sin is death.

  6. The reason that I posted (and I've never done so before, either on your previous blog or this one) is that your hypothetical example is so close to my actual situation. When you write 'If you endorse heart medication, it is hypocritical to frown upon plastic surgery,' it is as if you are speaking to me, or rather, my heart. ;)

    I think it's very interesting to compare taking a pill for triglycerides (which my husband insists I take--another sticky wicket there) with having a rhinoplasty or breast enhancements for purely cosmetic reasons. Really, it should be the opposite: plastic surgery doesn't change one's lifespan, only makes one's body look um...interesting, typically, in one's casket, while some medications or pills actually lengthen one's life, as it is mine and would my grandfather's.

    There's always another side, however. How do you feel regarding reconstructive plastic surgery, such as those stricken by breast cancer that endured masectomies. Should they not be given the choice to reconstruct their breasts if they so choose? Another example is the French woman whose dog left her with a mutilated face--should she have not received her face transplant? A child born with a cleft palate? Transplanting skin from one area of the body to a burned area? Fixing a shattered cheekbone, resulting from a horse's quick kick to the jaw? Not all plastic surgeons are in the 'lift and tighten' line of business.

    I'm also curious, in the same vein, about your opinion regarding analgesics and anesthesia.

    I am enjoying our discussion, I realize you are quite busy but it's very interesting to discuss our views. God Bless and have a fun night with your children and your husband!