It’s a rainy Sunday most parts of the country today. I’m so grateful my family and friends down in South Carolina and Florida were all kept safe in the hurricane. My prayers still go out to those of you who have lost things with hurricane Matthew, but I believe we are never given any circumstance too difficult for us to handle with the help of our Lord.
That kind of relates to what I want to talk about today. I wanted to share my story and how I am who I am today. I somewhat mention it in my About page, but I want to dive deeper into how the Lord has redeemed my life and keeps on molding and shaping me to be more like Him to this day. I feel like the older I get the more I realize how imperfect I am and how desperately I need help in this life.
I grew up in a Christian family, went to a Christian school for the majority of my schooling, had mostly Christian friends, played on a Christian soccer team…you get the idea. I was surrounded with Christianity and had every opportunity to grow in my faith. I did everything right, always followed the rules, and hardly ever disobeyed my parents. Being perfect was how I defined myself. Things were going pretty good for me, until I realized my need to be perfect was creeping into other areas of my life? My health.
I began to restrict what I ate, limiting myself to eating only what magazines and the Internet said was healthy. I felt guilty for indulging in anything outside of the so called “healthy” food. I over-exercised and became anxious on the days I didn’t exercise “enough”. I was driven by the fear of falling short in living a healthy lifestyle and only felt worthy as a woman when I ate perfectly. I lived for people’s comments of, “You always eat so healthy,” and “You’re so fit.”
Yes, I felt good about my body. Looking in the mirror, I liked what I saw, but there was something not right. I felt improsioned to my mind. I was looking like everything was ok on the outside, but on the inside I so desperately wanted to eat a cookie and not worry about it. I wanted to be able to skip a day of hard core running for just a walk along the river. How was I to get to this point? People made it look so easy, but inside, I was living in torment.
I tried cutting back on exercise and having treats at a party, but it ain’t that easy. I needed a mindset-change. I needed a new way of thinking about food and exercise. I needed to reevaluate what I felt was necessary to be truly healthy.
I only began to find healing when I gave up my imperfect body to my Lord, and truly believed that He became perfect so I didn’t have to be. I wore myself out trying to do life my way, when all I needed was to trust God with my health.
“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 Corinthians 6:19-20
Since this discovery, I’ve been learning more of what it is to treat my body as the temple of the Lord. This means not eating junk all the time, but also listening to what your body needs to function properly. Exercise, now, is about becoming stronger because I’m not as useful as Gods servant when I have no endurance. These changes have made me overall more happy and healthy than I was in the past when I thought I was doing everything right.
I will have to throw a disclaimer in here, as well. Remember when I said above that I’m not perfect? Well, still not…I still fall back into believing lies about myself and my body that aren’t true. I still need to be reminded that beauty is more important from within. Most of the time I write up these posts and am reminded that, crap, I still wrestle with that every day when I look in the mirror! But one thing I do know that is true…my God does not give up on His children. He desires them to be fulfilled and joyful in Him. He will keep reaching out to me and tell me that I’m beautiful because I’m a child of His. Amen?
So, being super real with you guys today because I don’t want you to make the same mistake I made, or if you’re going down that path, get off as soon as possible. Reach out to friends you can trust, and to your Creator who loves you. We can’t do this life alone; we need each other and our Lord.