So, let me guess, you saw it… Kim Kardashian’s butt and it’s attempt to break the internet (#breaktheinternet – gag!) Round, shiny, and deceptively smooth in appearance, you weren’t sure whether or not to be appalled or fascinated (in a could-that-be-real-I’m-studying-this-for-science sort of way.)
It may have been an accident. Or, perhaps you heard the buzz and Googled it. Either way, the damage is done and that image can likely not be erased from your memory. For that I’m sorry. I truly wish that Kim, and others who prefer to bare it all, would have thought first about the impressionable nature of the human brain.
Since the big reveal, I’ve read several posts zeroed in on her backside. Some say we should be outraged at the way the photographer was actually mocking African American women. Maybe we should? Others only preach that it’s what’s on the inside that counts and (in what is likely an exercise in futility) forcefully remind Kim that her character counts more than her curvature. Then there are others–a few brilliant mommy bloggers--who have taken on parodies of her soon-to-be-infamous pose. But, none of these posts have answered the question of how female viewers of that crazy round backside are supposed to react.
In this era of pornography and excessive indecent exposure, what’s a girl to do? How do we keep our eyes fixed on what’s holy and healthy while battling images that insinuate that the average posterior is inferior and our worth is somehow related to the size of our fanny.
Here are my suggestions:
1. Pray for her. I’m serious. I know you may be shocked, dismayed or just plain grossed out by those photographs. But, remember, women are more than just images. We aren’t objects to be scrutinized and judged for our physical appearance alone. We are multi-dimensional creatures, designed by God with a mind, spirit, and a physical body. Ms. Kardashian included.Although she seemingly enjoys being the subject of the world’s attention, falling into the trap of objectifying her isn’t helpful for our battles. If I consider the brokenness of her soul and the depravity of her mind that are both displayed through her willingness to share those photographs with the world, I am saddened by the pictures rather than outraged by them.
2. Be Angry. Okay, not necessarily with the Kardashians, but know it’s okay to have a holy anger against the ways the enemy has gained ground in destroying men, women, and families through the promulgation of nudity (p*rn included) and the now hyper-sexualized nature of our culture. It’s not any one people groups fault, it’s his. (“We wrestle not against flesh and blood…” remember reading that somewhere?). Pray for our men in their battle with the temptation that is literally lurking on the corner of every screen. Pray for our children: for our boys not to buy the lie that women are only valuable if they are “hot” and sexually available and for our girls to not feel the pressure that their looks (and willingness to act like a sexual deviant) determine their worth. And, pray for your sisters (and other women like our unclothed friend Kim) who are so caught up in the “who’s the sexiest” game that they have lost sight of what’s truly important. They need Jesus just the same as we do.
3. Get a Grip on Reality. Baby’s got back. So, what? Maybe you don’t. Perhaps you’ve got a big(ger) butt and you cannot lie. Whatever your booty’s condition, I want to remind you that the images you saw of her oil-slicked cheeks were just that: Images. Though I will confess, I experimented with coconut oil as lotion this summer (and that stuff makes your skin look ahhh-mazing…)…don’t believe everything you see. Especially if you struggle with body image.
4. Do a Sin Check: What? Excuse me? How could I have sinned by looking at those pictures of her?Here’s the thing. You looked. Likely not by choice. You saw, yes. But, what matters most is what happened next in your heart. For men (but increasingly more so for women), there’s a struggle with lust. Viewing images that produce thoughts that aren’t healthy or holy. But, for most women, viewing images of other women–be they clothed, barely clothed or unclothed–produces another type of unholy and unhealthy (dare I say, sinful) thought. It goes something like this: “I wish my bare butt looked like that.” Wanting her rearview instead of your own is something the Bible refers to as coveting. Apparently, even Moses had to address this problem with the Israelites. Just read Exodus 20:17 in the King James Version. “Thou shalt not covet thy neighbor’s house, thou shalt not covet thy neighbor’s wife, nor his manservant, nor his maidservant, nor his ox, nor his (her) ass, nor any thing that is thy neighbor’s…” Longing for her abs, her legs, her hair, or even her Gluteus Maximus is sin we need to confess in order to find freedom from our body image issues…
5. Remind Yourself of Where Your True Value is Found. What do you do after you see images of Kim Kardashian or any other woman who seems to have forgotten the old “private parts should remain private” rule? You remind yourself that life is not a beauty contest. You shout right back at those voices that whisper, “Ahh…I told you that you weren’t good enough…” and you tell them this, “I have infinite value because Jesus Christ died for me. His love for me doesn’t depend on my size or the shape of my derriere.”
Some of us are just born dimply.
The bottom line is this: Pictures of a voluptuous booty shouldn’t throw us off our game. Can I encourage you to stand firm in your identity as a daughter of the Almighty? Even if your back end doesn’t qualify you to star in a “Buns of Steel” video, there is nothing that can separate you from Christ’s love. Let’s focus more on him and fulfilling his kingdom rich purpose for our lives and we’ll be less likely to get distracted by all of the bums.