When Baylor University college student Alex Eklund, a freshman from Wildwood, saw Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show on Nov. 29, he posted a Facebook status stating he would “rather have a Proverbs 31 woman than a Victoria’s Secret model.”
Reactions to Eklund's post prompted him to create a video in which he reads from the Bible and speaks candidly about the significance of inner beauty, according to an article published this afternoon by Baylor Lariat reporter Kayla Reeves.
Eklund’s friend Jake Cockerill, a freshman from North Kingstown, RI, agreed with his view and filmed the video, according to the Baylor Lariat feature. To read the actual words of Proverbs 31, which has been called a poem about the perfect wife, click here.
The video, which accompanies this article, now has more than nearly 213,000 views on YouTube.
Eklund told Reeves he didn't expect the video to take off like this, but that God’s plans are higher above him and that he was just a vessel. In the video, he challenges everyone to become part of the movement for looking deeper into relationships beyond physical attraction, citing that one of every two marriages end in divorce.
He now has a website devoted to the non-profit cause of healthy self-images through a biblical viewpoint as well, in addition to one that offers live31 apparel.
"It's been crazy; it's really an awesome movement. The hand of God has definitely been with us; and this is clearly something that He wants people to hear," Eklund told Patch.
"I love that we have been able to make an impact on a regional level, and now that we are selling T-shirts, we are able to make an international impact by combating sex trade, domestic abuse, suicide, and eating disorders."
While Eklund, who is a philosophy and political science major, was home over winter break, he spoke to middle and high school youths at in Wildwood about this topic. Eklund served as youth leader at Living Word, and is a graduate who also initiated new spiritual activities there.
Living Word's youth ministries director Adam Mustoe has known Eklund for the past seven years. He said Eklund was one of the church's most committed student leaders. "Alex helped plan and execute events, and would often give powerful messages on Sunday mornings in our youth program."
Mustoe said he thought it takes boldness and courage to go against the grain and proclaim the truth. "Alex is doing this by speaking to our culture's obsession with the exterior."
Mustoe said the notions he likes most about Eklund's message is that "it encourages both genders, that it affirms all of us as precious children of God, and that it spans generations."
What Mustoe said he hopes others take away from Eklund's movement is that adults need to model this for children: "Start by turning off 'Toddlers and Tiarras!'"