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Sunday, May 17, 2015

Whom Are We Trying to Impress?

Photo courtesy of: Serge Bertasius Photography,
Have you ever been in a group of women and just listened to the chatter, instead of participating? It’s a fun experiment. You hear a variety of subject matter, and it probably includes:

  • Children
  • Fashion
  • Body weight
  • Shopping and prices
  • Food and recipes
  • Projects at home

And, you know what? Women usually try to impress other women.

“Junior was first in his class in math.”

“Really? My Judith was first in English grammar.”

“Little Phillip is playing the piano in State this year.”

And on it goes!

“I’ve lost 25 pounds in two months, using the Smith-Jones Diet. I am feeling soooo much better.”

“Oooooh, I am so jealous! I keep losing the same five pounds over and over again!” Laughter.

“I drink a cocktail of cider vinegar and apple juice each morning, and the pounds just fall off.”

“I’m going out to go buy some apple juice this afternoon!”


“I only paid $60 for this haircut. Do you like it?”

“You look SO cute! I wish I could wear that style. LOVE that color, too.”

. . . And more chitchat about hair, nails, jewelry, and fashion.

So, are women trying to impress men? I don’t think so. Men notice if we look nice, and they care if Junior does well in school, but I really don’t think you’d find men comparing manicures and hairdos. They don’t want to talk about weight. They don’t usually care about what other guys wear, either.

I think women try to impress other women. We acutely feel the scrutiny of other women. We care.

  • Do we look stylish enough?
  • Do we look pretty to those around us?
  • Do we come across as “on top of things”?
  • Do our children perform as well as other people’s children?
  • What is our value?

I believe that this tendency to try to impress other women is probably something that has always been going on. It seems normal.

But, is it necessary?

There’s a Bible verse that comes to mind, measuring themselves by themselves, and comparing themselves among themselves, (they) are not wise (2 Corinthians 10:12). The context is about doctrinal positions and conflicts between leaders in the church. This isn’t about women comparing hairstyles! (We need to interpret Scripture in its context.)

There are some biblical principles, though, that apply to our subject.

  • For Christians, our identity is in Christ. It’s not about us. I am crucified with Christ: nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ liveth in me: and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me, and gave himself for me (Galatians 2:20).
  • For the Christian woman, her meditation is in the Word, which guides her life. But his delight is in the law of the LORD; and in his law doth he meditate day and night (Psalm 1:2).
  • The law of the Lord is humility, not competition. Let nothing be done through strife or vainglory; but in lowliness of mind let each esteem other better than themselves (Philippians 2:3).

The woman who walks with God is more concerned about what God thinks than what anyone else thinks about her. A truly godly woman is selfless. This doesn’t mean that she’s slovenly about her appearance or that she doesn’t care about doing things well. She simply desires to please God more than people. Pleasing God means that she strives for excellence in every area of her life. She also reads the Bible wanting to know and obey God’s will.

The Psalmist put it this way: Teach me, O LORD, the way of thy statutes; and I shall keep it unto the end (Psalm 119:33). Thou art good, and doest good; teach me thy statutes (Psalm 119:68). He really wanted to know what God’s will was, so that he could do it.

I think that, if we (speaking to women) truly desire to please the Lord, our focus will be more on God than on people. Our conversation will be more about spiritual ideas than things and non-important fluff. We will, of course, continue to talk about our families, food, and fashion, as those are things women care about. But, I believe those things will be spoken about in a way that pleases God. There won’t be any competition or trying to impress. We don’t feel a need to “keep up with” anyone. Our only desire is to please God and be the women God wants us to be.

Any thoughts? Please feel free to share.


  1. This was a very good post, though convicting. It hits us women square between the eyes! I've enjoyed your posts on the BMW blog, and just recently subscribed to your blog by e-mail. Thank you for the encouragement and help you give both here and there.


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