This was originally a guest post on The Warrior Princess blog run by Wana Chinsembu out of Namibia, Africa. She contacted me with the idea of doing a guest post for her on beauty, specifically from a man’s point of view. I hope it’s an encouragement and give Wana a follow on Twitter @Wana_Banana19.
I know, the title of this is from a One Direction song. I have cousins that are teenage girls, so I regrettably do know about One Direction, to my eternal shame. But enough about boy bands, today I’m talking about beauty, but beauty from a male perspective. I’m not talking about beautiful men, I’m talking about what men find beautiful.
As a man who has grown up in the church, I’ve always heard about the often prayed for but rarely seen “Proverbs 31 Woman”. This is supposed to be the ideal women strive to be and men strive to be with. I’m going to be honest here, I’ve never found a woman who’s fit every part (There’s a page of the traits listed here). I’ve always heard women pray to be a Proverbs 31 woman, and these women are told it’s a beautiful thing to be. I agree with that wholeheartedly, but I don’t you’ll ever reach it. And I think that’s fine.
You’ve always heard the phrase that “beauty is in the eye of the beholder”, which basically means what may be beautiful to one person may not always be to another. In many cases this is true culturally and also on an individual level, but the ideas presented in Proverbs 31 are the sort of foundation, but that’s not whole picture. God made all of us unique, with unique desires, talents, and purposes. When I read about the Proverbs 31 woman, I do find it attractive, but those aren’t the only things I find beautiful.
What do I find beautiful in a woman personally, besides Proverbs 31? I like a woman who reads, quick to laugh and last to judge. I find women who know how to dive into conversation and engage on a deeper level exciting. I like a girl who isn’t afraid to sing in the car, even though my voice is terrible. I think it’s beautiful when a woman has a love of learning new things. I think women who smile a lot are beautiful. Encouragement is beautiful. Occasional silliness is beautiful to me. I love a woman who doesn’t mind sharing a comfortable silence. I think a girl who would want to hold my hand when I’m old and gray is beautiful. The things I find beautiful in a woman are vast, and new things are constantly surprising me and adding to it.
Have you ever heard about the concept of “having a list”? It was the idea that you should write down a list of character traits you’d want in a spouse. I had mine when I was 16, but then threw it out after a while. I threw it out because I found things to love that were not on the list. Obviously you should have some essentials like being a believer and pursing holiness, but other than that I think having a list is honestly selfish. A person is not a grocery list of traits that you’re constantly examining. They are a unique creation of God. God knows me better than I know myself, so I’m willing to let him surprise me, and he always has.
Here’s a little side note. I’ve had girls ask me what guys find attractive in a girl in terms of clothes and style. Now granted you will sometimes here that some guys are into preppy girls, or punk skater type girls, but any guy worth his salt will not limit himself to a category. This is a big secret I’m about to let you in on, and I could probably get in trouble for letting you ladies in on this. You ready? When a guy has made up his mind that he’s attracted to you, it takes an AWFUL lot to make him change his mind. This is where the whole “being attracted to you a person thing” comes into play. If he finds you as a person beautiful, he will find things about you physically beautiful in almost every case regardless of what you’re wearing. He looks at you in a pretty dress, he’ll think you’re beautiful because you look like a movie star. If he sees you in pajamas and a big t-shirt, he’ll find how comfortable you are cute. If he sees you wearing your favorite sports team sweatshirt, he’ll find something to like about it. When a guy thinks a girl is beautiful, both inside and out, he will always be looking for new ways that she is beautiful. You’ll have to try really hard to make him think otherwise.
In this world, women are bombarded by impossible ideas of what it is to be beautiful. Do you want to know what Godly men want and find beautiful? A woman who is chasing after God and not trying to be anyone else but what He created her to be. One of the last verses in book of Proverbs says “Charm is deceptive, and beauty does not last; but a woman who fears the Lord will be greatly praised” (Proverbs 31:30). That is beauty that lasts. The rest is just the cherry on top. What attracts the right men, godly men, will not be your hairstyle, your tight dress, or whether or not you lost five pounds. What attracts him is you. You as a person. While men are often idiots (I know, I am one), we are smarter than you believe, and we can often tell when someone is pretending to be something they’re not. Don’t try to be what some stupid magazine says is beautiful. You were created the way you were by God for a specific purpose. You’re already beautiful and valuable. So own it. Pursue God and be yourself, because that is what a true man of God will find beautiful about you. We can’t wait to see it.