Body Image

So I was trying on bathing suits the other day and I got a little down on myself for the first time in quite a while. I felt thick waisted...and flat chested...and just not so happy with the way I looked. (Well, okay, I do have to admit that I was kind of admiring my back and booty gains sooo, there's that.) 

It's definitely not a normal thing for me to get down about my looks, and that's mostly because I don't take progress pictures anymore, and I don't stand in the mirror and critique myself like I used to. I focus on being healthy, strong, and feeling good and try not to worry about what my abs look like. 

BUT I want you all to know that occasionally, I DO still struggle with body image. I'm not perfect. I'm not 100% confident all the time. I don't and never WILL have the perfect body. None of us will. And guess what? Even if you do reach your physique goals and look AMAZING to everyone will still find something you don't like about yourself, something else to critique, something else to improve upon. You'll still have insecurities. You may even still feel fat. It will never be good enough.

 So what I do now when I start to to feel this way is just pray. Not think about what I should change in my diet, or if I should back on calories or add in some cardio. No, that doesn't really do anything except reinforce the belief that to love my body I have to be leaner. No, now I just pray and ask God to help me with my body image and to help me to love myself, with or without abs. I ask that He will help me to not live my life for how I look, not to put my confidence or self worth in my body, but to help me keep my mind and my thoughts and my priorities on seeking HIS kingdom and His purpose for my life instead of worrying about my abs. 

I came across this prayer, and thought I would share it for those who are struggling with body image right now:

"Lord, help me clothe myself in love & faithfulness. Let me remember that those are the things that will win me favor & good name in your sight and in the minds of others. Help my mind to stay intent on pursuing love and faithfulness, as if wrapping it around my neck and binding it to my chest, instead of bemoaning the state of my body parts.

Lord, our culture focuses so much time and effort on physical strength, on toned shoulders and lean legs. Help me to release the burden of physical perfection. Help me to be grateful that you paid the price for my lack of spiritual perfection. Help me to live free of the burden of endless perfection pursuit, instead bearing an easy yoke on my shoulders.

Lord, I pray that you would switch my focus and fear from how my arms look in a tank top, to what my arms are busy doing. Help me find the beauty in the duty they fulfill, working at the tasks you have called me to, opened up to love and minister to others. That is the beauty in my arms, not their shape and muscle tone.

Lord, true health and nourishment to my entire body and soul comes from your wisdom and truth. I pray that fearing you and shunning evil will be my heart’s desire, and that I will see the great health and nourishment it brings me, despite the pressures of the world to pursue “health” for vanity and praise.

Lord, more than anything help me be at peace with my body. Please release me from envy of the hair, face, skin, abs, arms, legs, thinness, tanness, physical “perfection” of others. You stitched me together in my mother’s womb. You chose my shape, my DNA, knew how I would develop and age through every stage. Please help me to be at peace with this body, so that I might find life, and protect me from the envy of others that might rot my bones."


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