A Wonderfully Made Heroine

Photo by Ambro

There are a lot of writing how-to manuals that describe the characterization of romance novel heroines. In traditional, secular romance, this usually involves an increased focus on the heroine's looks. She is so stunningly beautiful and/or possesses a trait so rare (ex. unique eye color or impossibly perfect figure) that the hero is automatically drawn to her on that basis. Even if the heroine has a sharp wit or maintains a day job as a neurosurgeon, those traits will come second to her physical attractiveness.

I love the alternative God provides for us when it comes to beauty standards. In Psalm 139, David affirms:
                     "I will praise You, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made;
                     Marvelous are Your works, and that my soul knows very well.
                     My frame was not hidden from you when I was made in secret,
                     And skillfully wrought in the lowest parts of the earth."
                                                                            (verses 13-15, emphasis mine)

Look at those descriptions! Fearfully and wonderfully made. Fear, not as in scary-looking, but awe-inspiring, very great, a creation that can only be fashioned by a Master Craftsman. Wonderful, a thing arranged in such a way that one is inspired by its design. Marvelous, a work that compels one to stop and ponder its intricacy. Skillfully wrought, an artistic piece handled with such delicacy, precision, and love that it can only be called a masterpiece.

Whenever I feel my self-esteem ebbing on account of the world's standards, I go back to these verses in Psalms and remember God's beauty standards. They are so much higher than ours, and the best part is, we already possess that attractiveness simply because He created us. That kind of beauty can only be enhanced through our faith in His Son, our love for others, and our continued hope in His promises.

Let's be encouraged by our Designer and continue to craft female characters into truly beautiful heroines.