It’s really easy to pick at our faults and criticise the things we don’t like about ourselves when we live in a world that constantly feeds us images of ‘perfect’ bodies. We are always being told how we should look in order to be considered beautiful and it’s really hard to look in a mirror and not just pick away at the ‘bad’ things about ourselves. I know I have struggled with this!!
But haven’t we forgotten that we are perfectly imperfect? And that actually we were never created to look exactly the same as each other, we were created in the image of God! He cared so much about us that we weren’t just simple, basic flesh, but intricately created forms, with amazing consideration and thought to our every detail.
It’s amazing how different we all are and we need to remember to appreciate our bodies for what they are – a home for our soul.
“For you formed my inward parts; you knitted me together in my mother’s womb. I praise you, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made. Wonderful are your works; my soul knows it very well.” – Psalm 139: 13-14
I love the saying “You are not fat. You have fat. You also have fingernails. But you are not fingernails.”
I think sometimes we forget this. Our bodies weren’t designed just to be looked at and dressed up for admiration. They were designed in order to help us do things, to give us the ability to visit places, to be creative, to see things!
We should look after our bodies and feed it the right things to help it be healthy, exercise our muscles in order to be strong, get out in the sunlight to get some decent vitamin A so we can glow with the freedom of our life!
We need to start being thankful and appreciative for all that our bodies do! Especially as women, they do so so much for us. Think how amazing it is that we are able to carry a human baby inside of us for 9 months! Our body knows how to feed it and care for it, helping it to grow, and then allows us to deliver the baby into the world. That’s pretty incredible!
We have legs that are able to learn to walk, run, jump and swim! And eyes that can help us find our way even when there is barely any light. Talk about adaptable! Even the fact that you wake up each morning and your heart is constantly pumping blood around your body – that’s a real 24/7 job! And not only that, but our body will endure everything we choose to subject it to for years and years.
If we look after ourselves and love ourselves the way God wants us to, our life can be so fun and exciting, and that isn’t about what you look like, it’s about what you can do!
“You didn’t choose me. I chose you. I appointed you to go and produce lasting fruit.” John 15:16
At times, parts of our bodies are broken and don’t always work the way they originally were intended. But do you know what? That doesn’t mean you should love the skin you’re in any less! Because God didn’t make any mistakes and part of loving yourself is acknowledging your limitations and finding ways to work around them.
Sometimes what we consider to be a limitation is actually an opportunity to go further than we ever imagined. Just look at all the paralympians who have been on TV recently, they don’t sit around finding fault with themselves. No, they appreciate the capabilities they have and work on them to their advantage – they make themselves champions!
Maybe you’re spending too much time focusing on the negatives and not investing enough time working on the positives?
“But the Lord said to Samuel, ‘Don’t judge by his appearance or height, for I have rejected him. The Lord doesn’t see things the way you see them. People judge by outward appearance, but the Lord looks at the heart.’” – 1 Samuel 16:7
I watched a film a little while ago called soul surfer, based on a true story, about a young girl who has an amazing career in surfing ahead of her. But unfortunately, after an awful shark attack she loses the whole of one of her arms, and you see her struggle as she has to learn to adapt and try to accept herself.
It’s a really rough journey for her, and sometimes she wants to give up, often feeling like no one will ever think of her as beautiful because she doesn’t look “normal”. But she soon learns that she can be a massive encouragement and example to others and at the end of the film she makes a really profound statement. Someone asks her that if she was able to go back in time and not go into the water on the day of the accident, would she? And most of us are thinking of course she wouldn’t!
But she doesn’t, she says that she wouldn’t change what has happened to her because she has been able to embrace more people with one arm than she ever could have with two! How amazing is that?! God doesn’t care about your imperfections he cares way more about your attitude and your heart, and what’s even better is that if you find it really hard to accept certain things about yourself you can talk to Him and pray about it for help!
Remember, your body is yours and no one else’s. It’s up to you to love it and care for it, so next time you look in the mirror and see things you don’t like, write down all the things you do like instead and be thankful for everything your body has already done for you that day!
LOVE YOURSELF GIRL, YOU DESERVE IT!