Before I start tonight’s post — just wanted to let you know that I put up another YouTube Video: 10 THINGS I’D SAY TO 15-YEAR-OLD ME! We talk body image, boys, beauty and beer!
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I was shopping for my upcoming trip to the lake this morning, and as I was purchasing a bikini, I had a moment.
You know the type — one of those full-circle realizations where your life flashes before your eyes – kind of moments.
Well, maybe that’s a bit of a stretch. It’s not like I solved world hunger or anything.
But, that bikini brought up a lot of thoughts about…body image.
It doesn’t matter who you are, how old you are, what body type you have — every. single. one of us has dealt with feelings about our bodies in some capacity. I mean, hello – we’re in the season of swimwear. This is prime time when body image is front and center.
And for really the first time in my life, I’m finally at total and complete peace with my body.
Which, honestly, is such a victory for this girl, who nearly died in her pursuit of “skinny.”
Looking in the mirror I’d brutally tear myself down with hurtful words that would make a sailor blush. I’d stay home from social events, because I was ashamed of how I *thought* looked. I would never go shopping, because I couldn’t bear the thought of trying on clothes. (That, and I didn’t believe I deserved nice things.) I was completely enslaved to this belief that I was hideous.
I look back at that time now, and think, “My gosh, Care, you were beautiful. How could you not see it?”
That’s the thing. Our body image is so impacted by our brokenness. We’re not seeing with our eyes, we’re seeing with our wounds. We’re letting our negative self talk be the voice that we hear and believe.
We’re letting the self-doubt, the feelings of inadequacy, the self-consciousness, the past wounds or failings be the lens through which we see our bodies.
And I’m here to tell you: enough is enough of that bull crap.
I got over my body image issues when I stopped focusing on my body, altogether.
Here’s the truth: Yes, I have a body. But I am so much more than just a body.
I am a soul –and– a body.
Both equally important. Both given to us by the Father.
So what we do with them matters.
How we treat them. How we love and take care of them — it matters. Why? Because it is our responsibility as image-bearers of God.
Think about that — image bearers of God.
As soon as I realized that, I realized that by me hating my body, I was hating God. I was rejecting Him, and the gift He has blessed me with. And it was then that I realized, I need to change my thinking.
I need to start seeing myself — not through my own, broken eyes — but through God’s eyes.
God, who created me on Purpose, with a Purpose, and with a Promise. A Promise that He will make all things new — including me.
Yes, my past is full of incredible brokenness. Yes, I battled anorexia that nearly destroyed my life. Yes, I lied and was deceitful and manipulative and abusive and all that horrible crap that accompanies an eating disorder. I have incredible brokenness.
But that’s not the end of my story. For He is making me a new creation.
Seeing myself through that lens of crap from my past — that is a direct contradiction to the Promise that He’s given me.
By listening and believing those lies — those accusations from the accuser — I was rejecting the incredible gift of mercy and redemption that Jesus gave upon the Cross.
I had to pluck that out of my life by the roots.
Jesus didn’t suffer and die for me to believe I was worthless because my thighs touch.
THINK ABOUT IT
That is putting my body above God. That is worshiping a false god. Worshiping self. Making my body an idol.
I had to put my body in its proper place on the totem pole: at the very bottom.
That’s the hard truth about body image.
Seeing myself through the eyes of God, not the eyes of my brokenness.
I’ll leave you with the words from my inpatient journal when this finally dawned on me:
“Loving yourself is not selfish. Loving yourself means seeing yourself the way God sees and values you.”
“This is what the Lord says to these bones: I will make breath enter you, and you will come to life.” Ez 37:5
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Here was yesterday’s video! https://youtu.be/8pmp4ZI968A
A big thank you to my foundational sponsor, BetterHelp Online Therapy. I cannot begin to express how beneficial therapy was for my recovery from anorexia. Speak with an online therapist. Or check out content about eating disorders from BetterHelp.
MAGIC TOOTHPASTE? Yes! I am in love with this superior whitening toothpaste. It keeps my smile sparkling, without sensitivity or bleach! I made a website where you can directly order this miracle product! So if you want to give it a try, you can go ahead and grab a tube for yourself. I promise, your smile will thank you!
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