Why do men fall in love, and stay in love, with quite ordinary women? It is not the attractiveness required for a one night stand, but the sexiness God has designed for a life-long partnership. The Bible calls it being naked and unashamed. It is a source of wonder to a man at every stage of his marriage. He might notice other women in passing, but he cannot imagine living with anyone else.
The secret is deep below the contours of her face and figure. She has managed a model shift that colors the way she walks and talks and spends her time, makes love, raises children, goes out to work, and grows old as attractive as ever.
Many women are condemned by their mirrors. I wonder if my lipstick is right? My hair's a mess. How do I hide my ugly hips? I am sagging in the wrong places. What will he think of the blemishes on my face and the veins on my legs? I feel dowdy and out of fashion. I wouldn't want my husband to see me in a swimsuit, let alone naked in the shower.
The perennially sexy woman has settled that she is just right as she is. And the more her husband knows her, the more he will like what he sees. He will enjoy her at every stage of her pregnancy, nursing the baby, cheering the team from the bench, being knocked over by the waves, waking up half frozen in a sleeping bag, and breathing oxygen with an IV in her arm. She has the astonishing boldness to assume that sickness and exhaustion, wrinkles, white hair, and every other change of life, will have their particular attraction for him.
She does not have to sell herself or pretend like a prostitute. There is no need to hold her man by the tricks of the trade. She showers and does her hair and dresses to suit the occasion, but only because she likes herself that way. There is no need to impress other women by the way she dresses. Women who have found this freedom are very attractive to the kind of man most women want to marry and stay married to.
In making this model shift faith makes her comfortable with herself. "God loves me as I am, so I refuse to be embarrassed by the blemishes and sags and bulges. And if God finds me beautiful, why shouldn't my husband think the same?" When this attitude takes hold even her wrinkles become strangely beautiful.
Admittedly there are men who have other things in mind, and they expect to trade their mates as they trade their cars. The insecure woman who thinks she has to attract a man, and then make sure he does not see her as she really is, falls an easy prey. The genuinely sexy woman will spot such animals a mile away.
The shift to being confident about being seen and known by a man through every stage of life sounds easy. But of course the world, the flesh, and the devil are still around. The world says you must conform to what we expect you to be. Her flesh demands attention. And Satan keeps hissing the ancient lie. "You have no right to be loved as you are."
Blessed is the woman who can be naked and unashamed with her husband throughout the journey. There is nothing to hide, even in the deepest recesses of her heart. She is quietly confident that he will love her as God does, wrinkles and all. That is a bold assumption. But it is the brashness of this very assumption that makes her sexy. And even God takes a delight in those who presume on his love. And trusting in that is precisely what we call faith.