I often wonder where my liking of purses and my Love of God has a balance in my life. Does my being a "bag hag" take away from my closeness with God or is it innocent? Does it make me materialistic? I think the answers can always be found in prayer and in the Bible (of course!).
In Proverbs 31:30 it states, "Charm is deceptive, and beauty is fleeting, but a woman who fears the Lord should be praised
What does this mean exactly?
Since materialism is defined as the preoccupation of material things, rather than things or an intellectual or spiritual nature, I guess it would depend on how far I take my love of purses. Do I obtain my purses in morally wrong ways or skip out on opportunities God has for me to obtain them? In other words, would I spend my money I should be tithing on a purse? Why am I buying a purse? Is it to simply compliment attire I have or is it something deeper, like a "need" for material things?
What does my outward beauty portray to the world? Is it that I am a loving, kind, God fearing person or is it that I am about labels and that I may be unapproachable?
I think when deciding if our outward beauty is pleasing to God, we need to look at our motives behind it. Are we trying to please the world? Do I chase after beauty because I think it will fulfill me? No amount of beauty will ever fulfill a person, because God has designed us to not be fulfilled by anything but HIM. If I am chasing after purses and outward beauty as a way to find fulfillment, I will be sorely disappointed.
I need to keep in mind that my Father in heaven loves me for who I am, not the way I look or what newest fashions I have. I will never look more beautiful in his eyes no matter what I wear. It is almost always about motivation as to what is sinful and what is not. I have to look at my own heart. Am I do this because I am trying to be beautiful and gain the world's approval? (I see nothing wrong with wanting to "fit in" as long as that is not your number one concern in life on this earth)
As with anything you are questioning if it is sinful in nature, ask God and read his word.
1 Peter 3:3-4 "...Your unfading beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit is great in God's sight"