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Retail Therapy: Where Does Our Worth Come From?

by Arielle Royer

A few years ago, I was really into fashion & style. I mean really. I bought all kinds of style magazines, went onto tons of fashion blogs, and went shopping all the time. I constantly checked to see what all of the celebrities were wearing and what brands were the best. I’m talking about two hundred-dollar jeans and a dress in every color. It really became such a distraction in my life. I felt like I was wasting so much time on something that really didn’t mean much of anything.

Fashion and shopping are not bad within themselves, they really aren’t. However, so much of my time was focused on what I wore and how I looked rather than one: being content with what I had and two: focusing my attention on the eternal rather than temporary things. My desire to look and dress nice was not bad, but my motivation was. I was motivated to focus my attention on my looks so that I could gain approval from others. I was unhappy with what I had and how I looked rather than finding my value in Christ.

“If I need jewelry, makeup, or fashionable clothing to feel valuable, I have transformed those objects into idols because I expect from them what I can receive only from the One I claim to worship.” -Regina Franklin

We live in America where we are constantly bombarded with materialism and tips on how we can look more beautiful. Our worth is found by the way we look, the clothes we wear, and from physical beauty. This is a lie has taken over so much of our generation. My heart breaks for young women, who are constantly chasing after this false beauty and materialism which will never satisfy. No matter how many pairs of shoes you have, no matter if you have the right brand of makeup- you will still want more. Sure, the little indulgences will make you happy, but only for a short time. A real and lasting joy can only come from Him. You are made beautiful in His eyes regardless of the clothes you wear and your appearance.

“In other words, I must choose to see myself as God sees me. I must choose to consider all things in my life in light of their spiritual importance. I must choose to set aside the world’s definitely of beauty…..rather than making sure that my hair is in the right place, I ensure that my heart is in the right place. Rather than worrying that my jewelry doesn’t match my outfit, I contemplate whether my attitude matches what i profess to believe. Rather than wondering if others see me physically beautiful, I focus on whether others see Christ’s spitirual beauty in me. But the process is not without struggle.” -Regina Franklin

Can you relate? What’s your relationship with fashion and shopping?

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