If there’s one key idea I try to comunicate regularly on this blog, it is this: we Christians should understand how we are being shaped by the culture, and should conform ourselves to Christ instead of the world’s design.
That’s it. So if you read this blog, you’ll get a steady diet of that. I hope it contributes in some small way to your conformity to the Savior. Today, I’m hoping you’re not conforming yourself to celebrity culture. This is a topic worthy of exploration, but I’m not going to do much of that today, save to tell you what I suspect you already know: the American self-conception is not shaped by grounded, mature, down-to-earth people with their heads in the right places and their hearts set on the right things. It is shaped by worldly, immature, narcissistic, self-serving people who crave attention, fame, and lust. It’s that basic. So if you closely follow pop culture, if you ingest a steady diet of the culture’s entertainment, teaching, and thought, you will not be able to prevent yourself from being shaped by ungodly forces. It is as much a matter of fact as is a mathematical equation.
In the context of age and body, this means that instead of guys will alter their bodies and devote far too much attention to their physiques. Instead of pursuing maturity, they’ll worry about their hair, their biceps, and their clothes. Because the celebrity culture exalts youth, they’ll make a sad but desperate attempt to appear young even as age defies them. It’s pitiable to see a 30-year-old trying to look like he’s 18. But many try in the current age. Girls will emulate Hollywood actresses and will spend all kinds of time and money on clothes, makeup, and the like to get ahead in the frenzied race to appear the youngest. The sad truth? Again, age does its work effectively. Like with guys, you can always tell a woman who’s trying too hard, whose heart is pursuing attention instead of maturity. We Christians need to fight our tendency to try to look like celebrities. We should never just let our bodies go–we should take great care of them, in fact. But we should do so in a healthy, reasonable and balanced manner, taking care to avoid spending large amounts of time, money, and attention on such things. A few recommendations for us all: avoid the mirror on some occasions. Spend less time worrying over your outfit. Avoid buying that expensive facial creme. Avoid buying that expensive hair gel. Look to Christ for your satisfaction. Flee the world.