I know what you mean about the need to take greater care about how we look as we age, but only because I know this is important to most people, for reasons other than mine. When I was but a callow youth, I so feared the literal "wilting" of my future mate's nubile beauty that for several years, in my ascetic idealism, I couldn't consider marriage. A parallel development occurred that saved me, however: The ability to increasingly better see the beauty that is already in any person -- any
person -- so that seeing what I
wants to see is no longer important.
In fact, in this age of plastic surgery and Hollywood, where you can hardly find any women who have not altered their hair color or face or body nowadays, you will sometimes find a casting director who admits that the Barbie look is what "sells," but it is the face that has been through challenge and growth and shows it
that makes a good actor. In fact, it is our lines, creases, imperfections and imbalances that not only show our character, but our unique identity. Our crinkles make us who we are (and vice versa). No, I don't regret looking my age (or slightly more gray than others my age [though relatively unlined]) and I never will. (I have been a card-carrying member of the Clean Pate Club for 20 years now, thank you very much.) It's not the years, it's not the mileage; it's the experiences and lessons we've gathered through our journeys that count.
I have never let my age affect my will and desire to do anything. Yes, gravity hangs on my coattails (or thereabouts), but wisdom and experience are improving my odds every day. I feel smarter and better every day and even every minute; I don't plan to get worse unless catastrophe strikes (God forfend).
Integrity means a moral consistency and social sensitivity across the board. Sometimes even exceptional people will snap after enduring skewed situations over many years, but all things being equal, integrity is indeed the bedrock of society, of commerce and of platonic or romantic relationships.
Many men or women seem to want honesty only insofar as it benefits them. I suggest it is better to seek a mate who shows integrity over the whole spectrum of motivations, behaviors and choices. Of course, this only makes sense if this same searcher shares a similar depth and breadth of moral sensibility.
The Catholic church puts faith in men because Christ did also. Revelation and guidance doesn't come out of a vacuum; it appears within the minds, hearts and bodies of men; even though subject to error and at times failure, God accompanies it and redeems it in the end.
Conservative SBCers have been lobbying for language that amounts to "keep women barefoot and pregnant" (OK, "women shall shut up in church and obey men as their head in Christ") which the Texas convention has opposed, if I recall. Nothing [ha]s "burned me on the Baptists"; Tallowood in Houston is my favorite congregation. I object to drawing or commanding people onto bandwagons is all. Another danger sign: One-sided views of one's own or others' denominations or practices, in particular the inability to see or admit to the validity of others' points about your own predilections. Christ wasn't a Catholic or a Baptist and he didn't carry the King James Bible, so everything after the apostles is subject to human interpretation and error.
Yes, theology and governance are the main reasons we have so many denominations: differences in how we define God and church rule. Congregationalists are democratic (every member has a vote), Baptists are oligarchic (every pastor has a vote) and so on. People gravitate to what makes them feel comfortable (by their own temperament or an authority's teaching) and that's how the world works outside the kingdom of heaven.