Becoming a Real B.A.B.E.
By Constance Fink
Once upon a time, there was a small town girl who loved fashion, make-up, and glittery jewelry. As a teen, she wanted to be Miss America or on the cover of Vogue. Meet Andrea Stephens.
After winning second runner up in the Miss Oklahoma pageant, Andrea landed a modeling contract in New York City. She felt on top of the world…until agents and photographers dished out criticism relentlessly. As she was compared to an unattainable beauty image, she began to feel inadequate in everything. Her self-esteem tanked.
But, God used this to get her attention. He had bigger plans for her. First step—move back home. Andrea’s roommates thought she was nuts. “You have a great agent, a famous acting coach, and the best vocal trainer,” they argued. She watched her roommates light up joints, mix drinks, pop birth control pills, and knew God desired something better.
Shortly after her move, she heard about a one-year Bible program. Though she had been a believer since she was young, she had never studied God’s Word. Diving in, she discovered:
- God designed her in a way that delighted Him—she was beautiful!
- She didn’t have to look or act perfect to gain His love—she was accepted!
- God had given her gifts and talents—she was blessed!
- He had a plan for her that would amount to more than being a face on the cover of a magazine—she would be eternally significant!
With a healed self-esteem and God’s Word in her mind, she had a solid platform from which to teach this message to teens and women around the world so they, too, could be real B.A.B.E.s!
Andrea ministers through writing and speaking, mission’s trips, volunteering in a juvenile detention center, and as a senior pastor’s wife. She was also the former Beauty Editor of Focus on the Family’s BRIO magazine (no longer in print).
JBU: Is the pageant world as glamorous as it appears?
ANDREA: It is glamorous, but it’s a competition. From the outside, you see smiles, toned and tanned bodies, and glitzy dresses, but unattractive attitudes like greed, jealousy, and selfishness can creep in.
JBU: What advice would you give a Christian woman who wants to model?
ANDREA: Examine your motives. Modeling or acting can be part of your life but it must not be your life. It’s a job. If you make it about self-esteem or as a measure for value or success, you might weaken and compromise when challenged. Stay focused on honoring God.
JBU: Sometimes it is difficult to find modest clothes in the stores. Can you help us?
ANDREA: Modesty does not mean boring or frumpy. It means considering how the message of your outfit might affect others. For instance, the more skin we show, the more difficult it is for men to keep their thoughts in check. We can dress in looser fitting, less revealing styles and play up trendy colors, layers, fabrics, shoes, handbags and jewelry. A cami covers cleavage, a shrug or wrap covers bare shoulders, and leggings make short things wearable.
JBU: How can a mother help her daughter grow into a healthy godly woman?
ANDREA: Moms struggle with self-esteem also. Yet when she knows who she is in Christ, she can effectively model true confidence and security. She can show her daughter that true beauty comes from a heart that belongs to God. From this position she can put other’s needs and God’s commands above self.
JBU: What is important for a dad to do for his daughter?
ANDREA: Let her be herself. If God has given her musical abilities but you want her to play basketball, let go of your expectations. Encourage her in her giftedness; compliment her on her inner qualities. She desperately needs your approval and to know she is beautiful to you.
JBU: What is the B.A.B.E. Event?
ANDREA: It is a fun, high-energy day that teaches girls:
- God loves them
- They can learn to love themselves
- It is okay to be who God has created them to be
- They are beautiful, accepted, blessed, eternally significant
- They were created on purpose for a purpose!
JBU: What is one quick beauty tip?
ANDREA: Here is an easy tip. For your first layer of mascara, coat the tips of the lashes only. After 15 seconds, apply from root to tips. The mascara on the tips will pick up the new coat giving a fuller, thicker look!
- Favorite Scripture: Proverbs 3:5-6
- Favorite Song: “Captivated” by Vicki Beeching
- Hobby: oil painting, especially seascapes
- Fun thing she does with her husband: riding their tandem bicycle
To contact Andrea for questions or to speak at your event:
- E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Website: www.andreastephens.com
- Facebook: Andrea Stephens Ministries/The B.A.B.E. Event
Girlfriend, You Are a B.A.B.E.