Tuesday, April 21, 2009

To Susan Boyle: I Apologize

“Don’t judge a book by it’s cover” is a fitting phrase if you’re talking about a new food, a clothing item, or quite literally, a book. However, I am finding it increasingly inappropriate when it comes to using that phrase to describe a PERSON!! Yet, this is the phrase that keeps getting thrown around when it comes to “Britain’s Got Talent” contestant Susan Boyle.

My irritation about this situation was mild at first. I understand that the media and everyone who has commented on this woman’s extraordinary voice were trying to compliment her in some strange way by using that phrase. Yet, what is it REALLY saying to her; a woman who has admitted to being taunted and bullied by others and that has never been married or even kissed?! Are people daring to think that just because she has learned to put up with it that it somehow hurts any less by saying such things? I can only imagine what she has already gone through. Now, she has the added wounds of the WHOLE WORLD piling on her that she has a great voice but her “cover” is nothing to look at. That’s really got to hurt!!

Maybe I am just extra sensitive/aware of that kind of talk since I have been reading the book “Captivating” by John and Stasi Eldredge (which I will be blogging about soon!). In it, John and Stasi talk about the heart of a woman and her inner/outer beauty. Created in God’s image, we are ALL BEAUTIFUL - inside AND out! We are all “captivating.” So, to deem any woman as anything less than who she is and was created to be is an outright assault on her heart and identity! I can’t imagine how Susan Boyle must feel as she watches and reads peoples’ responses. Most of the comments I have seen have been well-meaning, but rather counter-productive to what their intent was; even on positive sites such as the weight-loss site I use and Christian sites such as Tangle (click on the links provided and see for yourself!). Talk about bittersweet! How wonderful is it to be complimented on your voice and then see all the talk about not judging a book by its cover? I get that the idea is to look beyond the exterior and at the treasure that is in the inside, but at the same time, it’s also saying that her “cover” is nothing to look at. As the authors of the book point out, we are a world that is enamored by beauty. While that IS a good thing (after all, GOD is beautiful and CREATED everyone and everything that He made to be beautiful) we often get caught up in comparisons and judgments based on our own ideals and standards. 1 Samuel 16:7 says: “But the LORD said unto Samuel, Look not on his countenance, or on the height of his stature; because I have refused him: for the LORD seeth not as man seeth; for man looketh on the outward appearance, but the LORD looketh on the heart.”

In saying all this, I’m not claiming my own innocence here. Like anyone else, I have judged, compared, and have been guilty of these things many times in my life, just like everyone else. However, since reading “Captivating,” I have learned so much about what it means to be a woman and about being beautiful and it has enhanced my ability to see beauty within which, in turn, radiates outwardly. I am learning to reject those judgmental and comparative thoughts from the enemy that only serve to bring them (and myself) down. In fact, he is the biggest source for all that garbage; we just “go along“ with it. I’ll blog it in more depth later, but to give you an idea, the root of it all is Satan and his special hatred and jealousy for humankind; especially women.

Woman was God’s final and most beautiful creation; the finishing touch. Women have a special allure and beauty that men do not have (sorry guys! LOL). And, she was created to be that way. Not only that, but she is a life-giver, and Satan hates that too. HE used to be the beautiful one before his own fall. So, is it any wonder that he chose to appeal to EVE when he sought to bring down the human race? He chose her because of his unique hatred for her beauty, her ability to give life, and the fact that she is the tender heart of God incarnate. So, he ALWAYS tries to make women feel less than such by robbing her of the very things he is jealous of. He seeks to rob and defile her of her femininity by either downplaying or exploiting her beauty. No doubt he has done this to Susan Boyle who only now at age 47 is finally deciding that she is not going to hide her beauty anymore. She will do what she is meant to do and be who she is meant to be. She will not be stifled by Satan or the judgments of others. Hopefully, she can heal from all the massive wounds that she has been dealt; all of them meant to keep her from being who God created her to be because Satan FEARS that so!!! Yes, she is a great threat to Satan, and so he has assaulted her heart as best as he could to keep her from shinning as she was meant to shine! HE was once the great STAR of heaven and oh-so-beautiful (Ezekiel 28:12-14). He doesn’t want HER or ANYONE else to shine like he once did! He will do whatever he can to stop it - and he’ll even use others to do it by implanting those judgments, remarks, and thoughts into our heads about her and others in order to wound people. But, we have a choice. When negative things come into our heads, those aren’t OUR thoughts! We don’t have to agree with HIS lies! We can CHOOSE to say, “Silence; you wicked father of lies! There is no truth in you! He/she/me is beautiful, valuable, and worthwhile and I will not let you to persuade me to think otherwise!”

So, to Susan Boyle, I commend you. I am awed and inspired by your inner AND outer beauty!! That beautiful angelic voice that God placed within you is only but one of the many beautiful things about you! Many have beautiful voices, but they don’t mean much if they don’t have the life, light, and passion that you so perfectly display to the world!! Your eyes sparkle and shine as you grace the world with your presence. Your personality speaks of compassion and joy. You are a delight to watch and behold; even when you are NOT singing! The warmth of your heart lights up your face! You exude a confidence that I can only imagine has taken you a long time to build as you humbly stepped out in faith to share yourself with the world!! On behalf of everyone who has ever hurt you; Susan Boyle, I apologize. You ARE beautiful!! You ARE lovely!! You SHINE like a star! You are CAPTIVATING and God delights in your beauty (Psalm 45:11). We who truly see you DELIGHT in your beauty as well! You are a radiant woman! Keep singing but moreover, keep BEING! You are a “book” that was never meant to be shelved!! Thank you for allowing yourself to be displayed and opened! Your “cover” and your “pages” are a wonder to behold!! God bless you!!

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