I stepped onto a scale the other week for the first time in five years. As I stood there waiting for the numbers to change from 000.00, I held my breath and reminded myself that the number that appeared did not define my worth. As the numbers grew, I took it in, got off the scale, and moved on with the rest of my day. I’m proud to say that I’m at a place where I can see my weight as a marker for health rather than a point by which to measure my very existence. But it hasn’t always been this way, and it’s been a long journey to get to this point.
I was at war with my body for the better part of my life. It was never thin enough, curvy enough, tan enough, etc. In short, it was never enough. Enough for what exactly I couldn’t tell you because the world kept changing its standards every year, and I was trapped in the spin cycle of always trying to measure up. There was always a new standard, a new look, and a new fashionable way to present ourselves to the world, and it felt impossible to keep up. It still does. The world excels at telling you what’s wrong and then giving you a million different ways for you to fix it. “10 Easy Steps to getting a bikini body,” “this trick will shrink your belly fat overnight,” “take these pills and lose 10 pounds in a week” and on and on it goes. It seems like everywhere you turn, there’s a new miracle cure, which also means that there’s a new thing that’s wrong with you.
“I praise you, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made. Wonderful are your works; my soul knows it very well.”Psalm 139:14 ESV
Believing the lie that there was something wrong with how I was created made me feel insecure and like a stranger in my own body and made me doubt the Lord. After all, it says in Psalm 139:14 that I was created with purpose and intention by the Lord. Yet, if I don’t see my body as good, then I’ll start to believe that the Lord must have made a mistake. And if He can make one mistake, surely He can make more. Suddenly, the lies of the world that have been seeping into my heart and mind take root and begin to block out the promises of God and cloud my vision of His character.
When people would bring up the topic of weight or self-image, I would say that I was okay with my body and even proud of it. But on the inside, I wished I could take myself apart and put the pieces back together again to look like the women in magazines. It was a daily battle to remind myself that God had made me this way, with this shape and personality, and that it is good. Not just okay, not just fine, not good enough, but wholly and fully good. It took me a long time to separate how I looked from my worth as a person.
The Lord has created each one of us to be unique. We were never meant to try and fit into the cookie-cutter moulds the world is touting. Instead of fixing our eyes on the next fad diet or the number on a scale, let’s turn our eyes and hearts towards the Lord and what He says about us. And let us use our bodies and health to worship and praise the Lord for all He has done and continues to do for us.
One thought on “Pulling My Weight”
About body positivity… I see a lot of partiality in how society views “body positivity”. If you really want an example, look up plus size pantyhose on Amazon. A product accommodates a lady up to 300 pounds. Yet, the model may have a shapely figure but she’s well within the norm of societal standards. She’s used to model a product that’s actually kind of big on her but she stretches it out with her arms to show the potential.
Now, this may just be me.. but if we’re now honoring all bodies, would it really be offensive to put a 300 pound model in the product to actually show the potential and at the same time support a plus size figure? Her body might have a flaw or so.. but that doesn’t mean it’s not attractive and it can’t do it’s job.
I’m weird… maybe it’s just me 🙂