Like most little boys, I hung out with my mom a lot while I was growing up. She always had these little one liners that sounded like she’d just pulled them from a fortune cookie.
“Blossom where you’re planted.”
“Actions speak louder than words.”
“You can judge a man’s character by how he treats animals.”
She had many others, but the one that always stuck out to me was “Beauty is in the eye of the beholder.”
I don’t know if there’s a woman on earth that doesn’t want to be beautiful. But the sad truth is that very few women actually do feel beautiful. There could be many reasons for that feeling of inadequacy but none more persuasive than the constant barrage of bad media we’re exposed to.
TV show’s and movies depict and expect women to have a successful careers, workout, have a perfect body, have kids, raise kids, take care of kids, stay looking young, cook, clean, take care of the house, and much more. Conversely, there are very few expectations placed upon men in these shows as they consistently break the heart of the woman that is working so hard to be perfect for her man.
From an early age, many women have been set up to fail. Expectations have been stacked so high upon their shoulders that when they inevitably cannot live up to those expectations, they begin to doubt their self worth. Subsequently, no woman can feel beautiful when she feels worthless.
We listen to these TV shows, sitcoms, and even presidential debates where various women are degraded and disrespected. Millions laugh…and chuckle…and cheer and all the while, a little girl somewhere is taking it all in…and a little boy is shaping his world view on women. What we don’t realize as a society is that it is our youth that are consuming this stuff more so than anyone else. They see it on TV and then sometimes they see it in real life, and in their home. It seems as if there cannot be a movie made without some sort of scandalous act of disloyalty and betrayal. It has become a staple of our society. We’ve come to expect it. No one feels safe in their relationships and insecurity abounds.
So I believe there is one thing above all else that a man can do for his kids that will impact their life more than anything else:
A man should make his wife (their mom) feel like the most beautiful woman in the world, and make sure his kids see it. He should go out of his way to make her feel appreciated. Make her feel like she is enough…and more than enough. Make his voice of positivity and encouragement in her ear become louder and more persistent than the world’s voice.
She will know that regardless of what the world is saying to her, and regardless of how she feels about herself…that she can always go to this man when she wants to feel beautiful. As the kids witness this…it will be the number one subconscious determinant for them as they then choose who to marry, and then how to act in that marriage.
A daughter will observe the way her dad treats her mom, and will most likely select a man that has a similar temperament and disposition. That decision of her’s will most likely bless or ruin her life.
A son will also observe his dad and look up to him. What that son observes in his dad will most likely translate into how he treats his future wife. His actions in that marriage will most likely bless or curse his life as well.
So much happiness is found in the Old Testament command to “cleave” unto your wife, and none else. To “cleave” means to “adhere to” with the synonyms “hold to,” “abide by,” “be loyal to,” “be faithful to.” To the world…this seems too “old fashioned,” but these are the simple attributes of a man who knows how to make his wife feel beautiful.
There is no limit to the amount of love that can flow from a woman who feels confident and beautiful, so not only will a man be doing himself a huge favor, but he will be teaching his kids one of the most important lessons they can learn in this life. That is…how to treat your wife (for sons), and how to pick a husband (for daughters.)
Truly some of the best love stories ever told were the ones that persisted decades past what the world deems as beautiful. Wrinkles and spots, shrinking and slumping, balding and bad eye sight…and yet a real man, being the “beholder” of his wife is still able to make her feel like the most beautiful woman in the world.
This lesson is one in which his kids will never forget.