My Body Is Not Your Concern

My Body Is Not Your Concern

I ran two miles today and ate a burger, get over it.

Recently I was told by some meat head that if I just started to workout more, I'd be "WAY more attractive."

Let me just begin by saying, MY BODY IS NOT YOUR CONCERN! Just like your body is not my concern.

Body image with almost anyone can be a touchy subject. Some way or another, people will find flaws in themselves even if you think they look absolutely perfect. We are known for being our own worst enemies when it comes to that. Being a girl that has struggled with body image since middle school it's not the easiest thing to hear comments like this. I can't stand to hear them directed towards other people let alone myself.

You should only be concerned with your body, not someone else's.

If I want to go to the gym, then I will go to the gym. If I want to eat a whole pizza, well...I'm going to eat that whole pizza. My schedule is very time consuming. Between work, school, clubs, and volunteer work, it's rare that I actually get time at home to just relax. Yes, I go to the gym as often as I can and recently I've been able to expand that to sometimes going twice a day.

I am more upset with the fact that people find it completely okay to comment on other peoples gym habits. For all you know, that person you just insulted has been struggling with the last ten pounds for months now. Losing weight and getting in shape is not easy. It takes consistency and time. Yes, I said it. It takes time to get the body you desire and often times you'll still find flaws.

Put yourself in their shoes. How would it feel to hear that "if you just worked out more, I'd probably be more attracted to you." It'd probably be terrible. People spend enough time critiquing themselves, they don't need you to do it for them. I just find it absurd that people still have the audacity to say such things.

Growing up, our parents would often tell us the cliche "sticks and stones may break my bones, but words will never hurt me" phrase. Now, while we routinely tell ourselves this later on in life, we also understand it's a huge lie. I have felt physical pain from broken bones and I can without a doubt say, these wounds have healed quicker. The verbal abuse that we face without realizing is what sticks to us the hardest.

I have dated men that told me if I "hit the gym" with them they'd be more attracted. Since when did a relationship become based solely on physical attraction. Don't get me wrong, I am all for couples empowering one another to become the best possible self they can be; however, there is a way to do this without imposing emotional harm on them.

God molded us into the people we are today. He watches over every one of us, including those that find it O.K. to say these sorts of comments. While he probably shakes his head in silence at these moments, he is also encouraging us to ignore such hateful words. He has made us. It would be rude to acknowledge his creations as "less attractive" or "not beautiful."

Just remember, you are beautiful in your own way. If you want to go for a run after reading this, all the more power to you! I will encourage you every step of the way. If you want to go buy tacos with some friends, I find that just as great. Your body is your concern, no one else.

Cover Image Credit: Dr. Sara Gottfried MD

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He Calls The Unworthy-Worthy, And To The Sinners He Calls Friend

You own the skies, and still you want my heart.

I think it's so human and honest of us when we feel inadequate.

Because we recognize we all have weaknesses.

Maybe it's for a job, a new position, becoming a parent, spouse, or being a friend

All real fears.

We all know our limitations, our flaws, and the mistakes that we've made.

Knowing we hurt people, we disappoint them, and maybe even fail ourselves at times.

And sometimes this fear stops us from pursuing something, and other times, it's through being that parent or spouse, realizing you have to push through, there is no way out now that you discover a grace.

That though you were inadequate before, and maybe still are, there is this grace that allows us to learn and to develop new skills we may not have had before.

I think the same thing can be said for Christianity. There are so many of us that see all the mistakes we've made, the disappointments, and flaws, and believe we are unworthy.

We are incapable of ever being a Christian.

We can talk ourselves out of it, and others do it to us as well.

The danger is that we are always going to feel underqualified, and incapable, and others will always be there right alongside us saying the same things, but you have to know what's true about you. Because at the end of the day, positive reinforcement, and love is not always going to be shown to us through our friends, or our loved ones, and we are the worst at giving that to ourselves.

But that doesn't mean we give up.

We all might not feel qualified, or worthy of something, but that doesn't mean we don't try, and we don't put our best foot forward.

In Mark 2:17, Jesus says, " I have not come to call the righteous, but the sinners."

None of us meet the standard.

We will never be good enough Christians for other Christians.

We cannot meet the standards of others, and even some of the standards we set for ourselves.

As Christians, I think we need to stop pretending that we are any better than anyone else because it isn't true. No degree, no amount of missions trips, or Sunday services make you more qualified, or worthy.

We are all so unworthy, so underqualified, and inadequate.

Which is why we are ALL in desperate need of a Savior.

No one is too far gone, or undeserving.

"For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life in Jesus Christ our Lord."

Cover Image Credit: Milada Vigerova

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Throw Away That Old Shirt And The Bitterness You Bought With It, It's Time For Spring Cleaning

Forgiving may be harder, but it's far less painful than the resentment you're harboring.

When I was a freshman in high school, I went through so much petty girl drama. What teenage girl didn't? Looking back, I know now how stupid it all was, but it meant the absolute world to me at 14-years-old.

I remember feeling betrayed by someone I thought was a close friend. So while shopping at Forever 21, I bought a shirt that read the words from Luke 6:31 .

"Do to others as you would have them do to you."

The shirt, for those who know about the drama, was another passive-aggressive, petty move by an insecure teenage girl. In my head, I thought that maybe she would read it and understand what she did to me. Maybe she'd be convicted of all the wrong she did and apologize. And I did wear it.

All throughout high school and even a year in college, the shirt was in my closet available to wear. Every time I wore it, I thought of her and her betrayal.

The shirt was supposed to empower me, but the power I felt when first purchasing it diminished each and every time I wore it. Each time I never got an apology reminded me of the hurt that she had caused me.

Now reading in Luke 6, I am reminded of that shirt and how I completely let the verse be taken out of context. I let it justify the anger and resentment I held towards this one girl.

The passage says this:

"Love your enemies, do good to those who hate you, bless those who curse you, pray for those who mistreat you...Do to others as you would have them do to you."

I'll admit. It was easier wearing that shirt and parading it around so SHE would recognize that SHE was wrong. It's not as easy recognizing just how wrong I was.

It was ME.

I wish I could go back and wear that shirt again. I wish I used it as a reminder to love her, to be good to her, to bless her, and to pray for her. Now, most 14-year-old girls don't think about it that way, but I think about it a lot now.

I wish I had thrown away that shirt long before I did. With it, I harbored so much anger and bitterness.

Maybe there's someone you're holding a grudge against or there's someone you're having a hard time loving. Let this be a reminder that the resentment and pride you feel of being right does not compare to the peace and joy you receive in forgiving and loving.

It's time to take the log out of our eyes and realize that we're the ones in the wrong if we choose to hold the grudge rather than extend grace to the ones who hurt us.

No, it's not easy.

But thankfully we have a God that does - what seems to us - the impossible.

I urge you friends, throw away that shirt and the bitterness that comes with it.

"Get rid of all bitterness, passion, and anger. No more shouting or insults, no more hateful feelings of any sort. Instead, be kind and tender-hearted to one another, and forgive one another, as God has forgiven you through Christ."
Ephesians 4:31-32
Cover Image Credit: Amanda Holt

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