As I get up and sit at my computer each day, I am growing increasingly weary of this vapid society. Everywhere I turn, I see far too much value placed on things that matter the least. Imagine for a moment you are house hunting. You pull up to a beautiful property with gorgeous landscaping and exotic flowers popping out all over the place and guarded by a lovely white picket fence. You enter the front gate and look up at what appears to be your dream home, complete with a wrap around porch and large bay windows. As you open the door to take a look inside, all you find an empty space. It turns out to be nothing more than a prop and there is not actually a home on this property at all. It’s all just a facade, an illusion. What a disappointment!
That’s what I feel so much of our society has become; all curb appeal, but completely void of any inner-substance. After all, it’s what’s inside the home that brings actual value to a property. Those who have been house hunting may know what I mean if you ever saw a home on property that looked perfect on the outside, but once inside, the size, layout or craftsmanship did not suit your needs or standards. No matter how much you thought this could be the one, you’re going to keep looking around if it doesn’t meet your expectations. In fact, most people would rather buy an ideal home on a property less kept up that has great potential.
These days, however, we are told all that matters is what’s on the outside. People spend their entire lives putting all their focus into beautifying their shell, while what’s inside is completely empty, or worse yet, full of mold. Ironically, in the case of human beings, it’s the shell that’s in a constant state of decay, but the inside is eternal. Our priorities couldn’t be more backwards! To me, the outside should simply be what greets people and entices them to step inside and stay a while. I enjoy looking nice as much as anyone, but how we appear should just be the beginning of who we are, not the whole. We should aim to be friendly and approachable, not because we want to impress people with our outstanding looks, but because we want people to be interested in getting to know the real us. That’s where our true value lies.
Yet, everyday I feel like I’m being marketed to non-stop. Not just by advertising companies selling products, but even from many acquaintances trying to live up to impossible standards set before us by marketing companies. You see it in the steady stream of selfies and intentional family photos that come down your social media stream on a daily basis. They too are selling a facade of perfection, but when you pull back the curtain, many times there is nothing but empty space. I find it incredibly draining because I believe we are created to be so much more than empty-headed vessels of vanity. Yet, we buy this lie that this is what we need to aspire to. This is what sells.
Maybe I’m just naive to believe that it’s not the clothes that makes the man. Maybe in this world it really does, and if that’s the case, I guess I’m doing alright, but I want to be so much more. Don’t you?
Do not let your adornment be merely outward — arranging the hair, wearing gold, or putting on fine apparel — rather let it be the hidden person of the heart, with the incorruptible beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit, which is very precious in the sight of God. -1 Peter 3:3-4