Do you like your body? I mean, really like it? No one can see you through the computer, be honest. Do you embrace your body?
I’m not talking about certain features- like your eyes. I mean your whole body, from head to toe.
After five pregnancies, I’m really struggling to accept my midlife body. My body has rolls, loose skin, and my weight won’t budge, no matter what I do.
I look in the mirror, and my eyes zoom in on all the parts I dislike and I definitely don’t embrace my body. Acceptance is hard when it comes to our bodies, isn’t it?
I want to change my physique, so I start exercising in earnest, but I fall off the bandwagon. Or I get sick and I’m thrown off my new habit- that’s not my fault, but I make excuses getting back into the new healthy routine.
I’ve even considered plastic surgery in the future, although the pain scares me too much. Does that make me vain? How do we make a decision such as this when our body is a temple of God?
Embracing Your Uniqueness
When I want a bouquet of flowers, I don’t want the same flower, but many different ones-big, small, blue, purple. The more flowers I have, the better the bouquet.
Look at trees or anything else in nature, and we can be assured that God loves variety. Have you ever noticed how many backyard birds species exist?
Don’t you think God embraces differences and variety?
Something as simple as a mushroom, who knew all the varieties God has created.
Have you ever realized in the Bible, physical characteristics have very little mention? We hear about Esau being hairy with red hair. Samson and Absalom having long hair. Saul was tall, and Zacchaeus was short. David was considered having a fine appearance and handsome features.
So when I searched for their height in inches, weight or shoe sizes, none of it is mentioned in the Bible. Obviously, these details aren’t as important to God (now don’t get me wrong, God loves and cares about the little details of us, but those details don’t help others grow or come to faith.)
So, why are we obsessed with physical characteristics? What does God say about our bodies?
Growing in Faith
When I spend so much time wishing I had a better body, I discredit what God has given me.
My faulty self-image affects all areas of my life.
- My intimacy in my marriage
A negative self-image is when I accept what others say about me, or see images of how I should look (thank you Victoria Secret). This negativity will never result in a healthy body.
What God says to me is the standard for a good self-image. Read through the Bible and see how He values and loves us more than we can imagine.
I become wrapped up on the want, instead of the wholeness I have in Christ.
Our Body is Not What God Focuses on
The Bible says Jesus had nothing in his appearance that would make us desire Him.
Say what? Was Jesus unattractive? (if you don’t believe me check out Isaiah 53:2)
Obviously, God wanted us to fall in love with the heart and character of Jesus, not his physique. God wanted us to come to faith in who He was, not how He looked.The same is true of us. God wants to develop our heart and character, not our appearance. Click To Tweet
How can I embrace my body?
- Center my view on God’s love for me, by intentionally getting closer to God. His love is unwavering and unchanging.
- Focus on my position in God’s family, not my physical appearance, God gave my body to me for my specific role in His kingdom. It’s important for me to realize: my body has birthed five kids and will be different from someone who hasn’t.
- I will drop my pride and take on a humble side. When I think I deserve better aka pride, I willingly discredit the gift of my body. Therefore, I will instead adopt the attitude of God being more concerned about my heart.
- God’s ways aren’t the culture’s ways. Admit to yourself, God doesn’t want us to focus on our appearance, but on our heart and a relationship with Him. Even if we got the chance to make our body the way we wanted to, if our heart isn’t right it would make no difference.
Ever Changing Bodies in Christ
Remember we are works-in-progress. Any change happens through time, not quick fixes. Lasting change is what we are aiming for, aren’t we?
Let me clarify something: God wants us to care for our physical bodies and keep them in good working order; He just doesn’t want us wishing or wanting parts of our human bodies away.
Figure out where the lies about our bodies come from, discredit them and replace them with God’s view.
How does God consider beauty? It’s not a size O figure or super slim thighs, but rather the heart and faith of His children. We are able to embrace our bodies when we realize how beautiful they are to God.
Look up bible verses about the human body, if you’d like to learn more.
3 Don’t be concerned about the outward beauty of fancy hairstyles, expensive jewelry, or beautiful clothes. 4 You should clothe yourselves instead with the beauty that comes from within, the unfading beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit, which is so precious to God (1 Peter 3:3-4, NLT).