I want to really focus on the main message, in my opinion of this chapter – getting to the heart of the matter. It took a few pages to get to the real meat of this chapter, but for me it was when Jill began talking about how some of the issues we have with our bodies are truly reflective of heart issues.
“So often our body issues reflect what is going on inside of us. So we try to change our habits, we promise to exercise, we declare we will eat healthier, we pledge to go to bed earlier, but non of that works in the long run. So often we try to change our outward behavior when we really need to focus on the issues in our hearts that product these behaviors.”
Oh ladies, did that sting just a bit for you as well? We can tend to think that solutions are outwardly easy, but honestly to change embedded habits requires digging a bit deeper. It is hard work – or rather HEART work!
So what is the Antidote?
Moving from Insecurity to Confidence
Jill challenges us to apply to practical strategies to help us learn to love our bodies the way Christ does. The first one seems very doable and I will likely spend some time this weekend.
Writing down Bible verses
I love writing down verses on notecards – this is very therapeutic for me….so calming and relaxing. I love searching through the bible and finding verses that are “just right”. What I find hard, is making sure I make the time to do this. Another matter of the heart, honestly. Putting aside time for me, to prioritize the importance of this is hard. I can make excuses or do it – what will I decide.
My days are full, just like yours – jammed packed – but it is important for me to change my heart and this is one practical way I can spend some time digging a bit deeper into God’s word and helping me to change from the inside.
Thanking God for Your Many Parts
To be honest, I am not sure I can truly do this one, but I am sure it will be a great exercise. In reality, this is an incredible exercise – but I think I might start laughing part way through it. I did almost start tearing up a bit as I read Jill’s example, starting with your feet,
“God, I thank you for my feet. Some people can’t use their feet, but I can.”
Those are statements that I need to keep on the tip of my tongue – always.
Even though my “opinion” of my body may not be stellar, I have to remember what I can do and what my body does for me. My mom battled Multiple Sclerosis for over 20 years and for over 14 of those years she could not walk. It is not often that I let my mind wonder to those times of her suffering like she did to truly realize even in the midst of my hard days and struggles, that I have it easy compared to what she dealt with.
And even in my body that is maybe “10 pounds heavier than I would like to be” or I struggle with making sure my bald spot is not showing…..I need to appreciate and have gratitude.
“Cultivating a heart of gratitude will change your perspective and help you move from insecurity to confidence about your body.”
Shift from Judgment to Grace
What, that grace word again – you mean – talking about us? As Jill says, we are certainly our own worst critics and see only the bad. We really like to make sure that not only we see it but everyone else too! Why is that? I mean I can get a compliment but cannot just say ‘thank you’ and relish it, I have to make some type of comment which devalues the comment.
I love this and will print it out!
“When God sees us through eyes of grace, He sees the possibilities, not the liabilities. He sees our strengths, not our weaknesses. He sees us for who we are, not for who we aren’t. Making peace with your body will silence the critic in your mind.”
So good!! Look for that quote to appear on the Facebook page – it is such a good one for us to embed in our mind. Also, watch that critical self-talk that we like to have run in our mind – over and over again, saying all the negative.
So what antidote is the right one for you to focus on? I love to practical ideas of nourishing our bodies with tasks of choosing: Move It, Rest It, Hydrate It, Feed It, but what else in speaking to your heart? Which one of the practical tasks can you assign to complete this weekend?
Embrace Your Beautiful, Imperfect Body
“Our bodies allow us to hug, smile, and wipe away the tears of those we love. There are no perfect bodies – but we each have one that serves us better than we often realize.”
Take some time and pray the prayer that was shared in the discussion questions for this week. What did this chapter speak to you, what do you know you need to work on to embrace your imperfect body?
Please begin reading Chapter Five and I will see you next week!