Body Image and The Christian

body image and the christian

“Therefore, I urge you, brothers and sisters, in view of God’s mercy, to offer your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and pleasing to God, this is your true and proper worship. Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is.”-Romans 12:1

Embracing Our True Image as a Christian

One of the first things we should do as Christians is to rid ourselves of the world’s definition of “body image.” We as Christians are in the world, but not of it. That means, yes, we have physical bodies that live and walk upon this earth. We have jobs, we have families, and we have responsibilities. However, even in the midst of our worldly culture, our hearts should belong to the Lord. Our identities are found in Him and our purposes are for the kingdom of heaven. We are more than our “earthly body image.” We are beings and souls made in the image of the almighty God! Because of this fact and astounding reality, we have immense value, purpose, and worth. God made us all uniquely and intricately…from our personalities, to our skin complexions, to our physical dimensions, and our bone structures. We are God’s greatest and most precious creations. Let us let go of the world’s view of “body image” and embrace what it means to be a true and lasting image bearer of God.

That means we don’t define ourselves by our external and physical exterior.

We are defined by WHO made us, which is God himself!

Our significance is not found in the numbers on a scale, our dress or pants size, our fleshly skin,

how many people find us attractive, or how physically “in shape” we are.

Seeking to live life from that fleshly perspective is temporary,

not sustainable, and will not produce any lasting joy.

Our true significance is in the fact that God made us and loves us and has called us to live in righteousness. Insecurity is a tool of the enemy used to create a false reality. Satan uses the sins of comparison, covetousness, jealousy and envy to feed the lie that WE’RE not as beautiful or valuable as someone else. WE ARE ALL BEAUTIFUL because we are ALL CREATIONS OF GOD. God doesn’t make junk or worthless things. Remember, the most important image, is not our “body image.” What’s most important is being a “image bearer” of God through our attitudes, through out mindset, and through our bodies being sacrificially lived in holiness and uprightness toward God.

Affirmation: My value as a Christian is not externally or earthly validated. My value as a Christian is eternally secured in God.

“Let Us make man in Our image, after Our likeness; So, God Created man in His Own image, in the image of God created He him; male and female created He them.”-Genesis1:26-27

Valuing Our Body but not Worshipping Our Body

“Or do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit within you, whom you have from God? You are not your own, for you were bought with a price. So, glorify God in your body.” -1 Cor 6:19-20

As Christians, we should value our bodies but as Christians, we should not worship our bodies. There is a BIG difference between those two things. God should be the being of our worship and adoration. Our bodies were given to us by God (Genesis 3) and we are to be good stewards of them (1 Cor 6:20). Understanding that we were made by God as human beings should compel us all the more to value our bodies. But even more as Christians, understanding that Christ died for us and we were purchased with his blood on the cross, should be one of the biggest compelling truths for valuing our bodies (1 Cor 6:19). Valuing our bodies like Christ, means we take care of it with the utmost respect, honor, and humility. We should not undervalue our bodies, and as a result do things that purposely harm our bodies (physically, mentally, psychologically, and spiritually). However, we should not over value our bodies, and as a result pridefully and arrogantly esteem our bodies. Romans 12:1 reminds us of how God wants us to live as Christians with our bodies. “Offer your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy, and pleasing to God, this is your true and proper worship.” We value our bodies, by first valuing and worshipping God our Creator and seeking to please Him every single day in our bodies. We should live sacrificially, holy, and acceptable to God.

Consequently, we should not undervalue our body because we may have stretch marks,

scars, wrinkles, deformities, disabilities, certain physical limitations, chronic illnesses,

certain skin complexions, a particular body weight, or a particular body structure.

Simultaneously, we should not pridefully value ourselves because our skin is smooth,

we are physically healthy, we are in great physical shape, or because of our skin complexions,

body weight, or body structure. Remember, God is the being of our worship, not ourselves!

As Christians we should do our best to take care of bodies no matter what season of life we are in, but we should not obsess over them. Seasons of life do not change the value of our bodies, even if seasons of life do change the conditions of our body. WE must remember, no matter what body we have, we should value it because God made it.

Affirmation: I worship God, but I don’t worship my body. I value who I am in Christ, but I don’t value myself above Christ for Christ is Lord. My body is valuable in every season of life, even if the seasons of life change the condition of my body. My body is valuable because it is an instrument of righteousness for God.

“For bodily exercise is of some value, but godliness has value for all things, holding promise for both the present life and the life to come.”1 Timothy 4:8

Starting with the Heart: Living from the Inside Out

You are like whitewashed tombs, which look beautiful on the outside but on the inside are full of dead men’s bones and everything unclean.” -Matthew 23:27

As Christians, we must understand that everything starts with the heart. We are what our hearts look like and we will live out whatever is in our hearts. Satan wants to get a hold of our minds and hearts when it comes to our bodies. He wants us to live from distorted and improper thinking. For he knows if he can get the mind, he can get the body, and then someone’s life & soul. Please hear me when I say, OUR MOTIVES MATTER. Some of us can be in tip-top shape, have a six pack of abs, be crushing all of our so-called “weight goals,” counting every calorie but still be very far from God because our reason for doing that comes from a prideful, vain-filled, and evil place. Some of us can be in poor physical shape because we devalue ourselves so much that our god has become our belly, and we worship and live for food or use food as a weapon to ourselves. Sometimes we can allow the lies of the enemy to cause us to live from such a defeated place that we have no value in ourselves anymore.

Some of us can take pictures & videos on social media, have a lot of followers, dress provocatively,

get a lot of attention/likes and still be spiritually separated from God because our

god is jealousy, envy, and pride. Some of us can live from a competitive spirit

and seek to worship our physical body above the true and living God.

Then there are some of us who can smile and look fine on the outside all the while,

we are in a deep dark place spiritually, because we are using drugs, alcohol, sex, and

any other private sins to self-medicate the pain we have within.

Then there are some of us who can be sad, be filled with negativity, have zero joy or gratitude in our spirit, beat ourselves up mentally and physically because we live life from such a downcast state. Satan can influence us to make self-pity our god. Sisters and brothers…our motives matter and the condition of our hearts matter. The condition of our hearts WILL AFFECT our view of our bodies and how we live in our bodies. I’m not writing this to condemn anyone, but to encourage us all. We are all struggling with something! This is why, we have to spiritually fight to not conform to the patterns and the thoughts of this world (Romans 12:2). We must infiltrate our hearts with the truth of God’s word every single day and live from that truth. Our bodies are a gift from God! A gift that we should want to give back to HIM. So always remember, You and your body are beautiful! May your soul know that full well!  Now that’s the truth about body image and the Christian. Be encouraged!

Affirmation: As a Christian, I live from the inside out. I live from the truth of God’s word, not from the lies of this world. My body is a gift and I will show God my thankfulness for this gift by the way I treat and live in my body.

“Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is, his good, pleasing, and perfect will.”

-Romans 12:2

With love,

Ashley Moneet

Fearless.Faithful.Following

Tags:

Share Post

Related Posts

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *