When I was in high school, Bethany and I decided we wanted to do a really cool photo shoot of ourselves.
We put on the most modern outfits we could find, layered on the jewelry, doubled the mascara and headed to a prime location—our roof. We recruited (begged) one of our younger sisters to be our photographer. We all climbed onto the roof of our house and she snapped away with the camera.
Yes, a roof is a random place to do a photo shoot, but we did it there to get that perfect "modelesque" breeze to blow our hair just right. For each picture, we posed exactly the way we had seen the professional models do it with their lips puckered, one eyebrow raised, hand on hip, and serious eyes.
Without being told how to pose seductively, we were pros and knew exactly what to do. We proudly posted our photoshoot to Facebook and waited for the compliments to come in.
Seductiveness is the new norm.
Sadly, we live in a culture that "trains" our minds to view seductiveness as the norm from a very young age. Just take a quick walk through the mall and you'll see poster after poster featuring models striking a sexual pose. Since the invention of Pinterest, Instagram and other apps, sexualized images are in our faces more than ever before.
As Christian girls, we're being bombarded by our culture's message that seductive and sexual poses are cool, hip and normal. Taking seductive selfies isn't raunchy anymore... it's acceptable and praised. Since we live in a fallen world it makes sense that our culture praises and encourages girls to act this way.
It makes sense that the supermodels and non-Christian girls don't have a problem posting selfies like this.
The question I have for you is this: Why in the world are Christian girls posting seductive selfies?
I'm shocked sometimes when I get on my Instagram and see some of the sensual poses a few of my Christian friends are posting. What surprises me even more is the comments I read from other Christian friends who are complimenting these images and calling them "beautiful." So what's up with this? It seems like an epidemic over the past few years.
Why are Christian girls so fond of posting seductive selfies?
I know the answer to these questions because I used to be one of those girls. I used to be the girl behind the
iPhone flip-phone snapping those seductive poses. I was the girl on the roof doing a photo shoot so I could show off the results to my friends.
For me, I posted those pictures because I wanted guys to notice me. I wanted people to compliment "how pretty I was." I loved hearing the praise and affirmation from my friends. It was never an accident that I posted a picture of myself. It was always intentional and planned. I had seen enough images of fashion models to know what a "hot" picture was supposed to look like.
Many of you reading this blog know exactly what I'm talking about because you've done the same thing.
The truth is, posting seductive selfies is just an outward symptom of a much deeper issue.
It's a sign of a girl who is longing for something more. It's a sign of a girl who is trying to fill up her affirmation tank through the praises and compliments of her friends. A girl who craves attention from guys and hopes they'll notice one of her pictures. A girl who wants to appear confident, but is weak and lonely on the inside. A girl who enjoys seducing guys by making them "want what they can't have."
Seductive selfies are nothing more than an image that screams, "Look at ME!" They're an opportunity to point the spotlight on yourself for a brief moment and hope that someone will notice.
As Christian girls, God calls us to a much higher standard than to play the seductive selfie game.
The whole purpose of our lives is to point others to Christ, not to ourselves. These types of photos are never Christ-centered, but are always self-centered. God calls us to live morally pure lives in every way. Posting seductive pictures of yourself isn't promoting purity or holiness within the body of Christ.
Since that day on the roof, God has convicted me about the motivation and condition of my heart. Tell me if you think seductive selfies are okay according to Ephesians 5:1,3: "Therefore be imitators of God, as beloved children ... But sexual immorality and all impurity or covetousness must not even be named among you, as is proper among saints."
What do you think?
First we're called to be imitators (reflections) of God to the world around us. You and I are God's children! We need to reflect the character and purity of our Father well. Second, we're commanded to stay away from any form of sexual immorality and all impurity. Did you catch that? "Any form...all impurity."
Seductive selfies don't stand a chance against these verses.
Our culture tells us that holiness and purity is lame, and that being too strict on yourself will lead to a life of boredom. If that's the case, then why are so many girls lonely, sad, depressed, insecure and needy?
God gives us standards for purity and holiness because He knows it's what's best for us. True joy and contentment won't come through the applause of your friends, it will only come through obeying and honoring God. "Blessed are those whose way is blameless, who walk in the law of the Lord! Blessed are those who keep His testimonies, who seek Him with their whole heart" (Psalm 119:1-2).
I know you want to be blessed by God. I sure do! Instead of striving after the empty applause of this world, strive for the fulfilling applause of your King.
You will never be happier than when you're living your life for God's glory.
As Christian girls we have a duty to honor our King in every area of our lives. We have a responsibility to bear the image of Christ to the lost world around us.
Will you join me in rejecting the trend of seductive selfies? Will you say no to posting self-glorifying pictures that put all of the attention on you?
Our world is in desperate need of Christian girls who are willing to stand up for God's truth by displaying something far greater than themselves.
Let's make it personal:
- Are you guilty of posting seductive selfies? If so, what is your motivation behind posting them?
- Are you willing to ask God's forgiveness for not reflecting well on His image? If so, confess your sins and ask God to create a clean and pure heart inside of you.
- What ways are you tempted to put the attention on yourself instead of God?
Kristen Clark is co-founder of GirlDefined Ministries.
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