A beauty pageant is a kind of competition that is based mainly on the physical appearance or beauty of its contestants. The ultimate purpose is for public entertainment, in which historical events are acted in the costume of the period. It is also referred to, in many quarters, as a beauty contest – a public celebration in which there is a procession of persons in fine costumes.
In beauty contests, the organizers claim to incorporate personality, talent, and answers to judges’ questions as criteria for qualification, yet such contests reinforce the idea that women, usually young ones, should be valued primarily for their physical appearance. This however has puts tremendous pressure on women to “be beautiful” by spending time and money on fashion, cosmetics, hair styling and even cosmetic surgery. This pursuit of physical beauty that is prevalent in our societies today has gone a long way to encourage women to diet to the point of harming themselves.
Evidences abound that beauty is only skin deep, therefore judging it by outward appearance can be misleading. The Holy Bible reminds us that a righteous heart is the fountain of beauty. The tabernacle in the wilderness was a tent where the glory of God dwelt. The structure was made of badger skins and was plain on the outside. But inside it was exquisitely beautiful (Exodus 25-27). We can compare the tabernacle with Jesus’ human form. John said, “the Word became flesh and dwelt among us” (John 1:14). The word dwelt means He “pitched His tent with us”, the same word that ancient Greek versions of the Old Testament used for the tabernacle.
Jesus looked like an ordinary man: He had “no beauty that we should desire Him” (Isaiah 53:2). No one gave Him a second look, yet John “beheld His glory”; the glory of God Himself. Occasionally, the tent flap was lifted and he caught a glimpse of Jesus’ inner beauty and majesty. We are tabernacles too, made of skin, made to contain God’s Spirit. Most of us are very plain, not like the made-up actors we see in the movies, the beauty queens that move in contest parades, or the air-brushed models we view in the ads. But God is even now – at this moment – in the process of making us radiantly beautiful within.
To find a good beauty pageant, try to find where Jesus takes His position within. The beauty queen may be very plain and ordinary on the outside – but as long as God’s Spirit is allowed to work within, the beauty of God’s indwelling presence will truly shine from the face. So, if you want to get a good beauty pageant, test the set up with God’s Word – the Bible. If the world, rather than Jesus is seen there, it is only telling you that the devils are at work. Are you a contestant in a beauty pageant? Let the beauty of Jesus be seen in you, let All His wonderful passion and purity; together with His Spirit, refine all your nature till His beauty is seen in you. When Jesus is in you, then you are truly beautiful!
Vitus Ejiogu is a writer and publisher with the Fire-Brand Int”l Ministries, a media ministry that is based in Nigeria.
He is the editor of FOUNDATION SATELLITE magazine also published by the ministry. He pastors a Church in Bauchi and is married with two children.