Came across this must-read article on The Satanic Ideology of Photoshop by Mike Cosper that ties in really well with a lot of stuff I’ve been thinking about recently about thankfulness and contentment. It talks about the lies that feed and are fed by the culture of photoshopped beauty that we see all around us in magazines and on billboards. He says that ultimately, it’s all a Satanic assault on our contentment in God and what God has given us:
“When Satan came to Eve in the garden, his assault (amongst other things) was an attack on her contentment. “Did God actually say, ‘You shall not eat of any tree in the garden’?” (Genesis 3:1) To paraphrase: “Has God held out on you? Has he given you less than you need, less than you deserve?” The temptations of Jesus in Luke 4 are likewise assaults upon contentment. For Jesus to turn stones to bread would have been to deny the sufficiency of God’s provision. To worship Satan in exchange for the kingdoms of the earth would have been to deny the sufficiency of Jesus’ inheritance to come. In these cases, Satan’s message was the same: God is holding out on you. You’re lacking what you really need. You don’t have what will really make you happy.”
Our ideas about what is beautiful are so distorted that we become unable to accept aging with grace. But more than that, our self-centredness and pursuit of pleasure means that we elevate outer beauty to the point where it makes us miserable, unable to rejoice in the reality of how things actually are.
Yet the Bible reminds us that we are fearfully and wonderfully made. Exactly as we are, God knew what he was doing! We need to keep remembering what life is all about, that we’re here for God’s glory and not our own pleasure or our own egos, and that even as we wrinkle and sag we will continue to grow more and more beautiful if we persist in seeking first the kingdom of God. There’s a glory to a person’s godliness that cannot help but shine.
We might wish to be eternally youthful, but instead we need to keep trusting that our God is generous and good, and rejoice in how things actually are today.
(-HT Justin Taylor)