Wednesday, March 23, 2016

Body Image

Someone said something to me today that I feel like should've really offended me. My feelings should've been really hurt, and honestly probably seven or eight years ago that would've been the case. I've always been a pretty confident person, but there are definitely things about my body that I've been very self-conscious about. I think every girl in the world can say the same thing - and guys too. 

When the comment was made to me, my mind flashed back to this morning, because coincidentally, it went right with something I saw something that my sister had posted on Twitter: 

***So as a disclaimer, I don't really agree with putting words in God's mouth, but based on his love for us and the things of the Bible, I feel like this is pretty accurate.***

When I read this, I cried. I cried because I remember feeling that way. And because my heart hurts for girls that feel that way right now, who have been told that they aren't pretty or skinny or curvy enough. Or that they need more makeup.

I am a high school teacher. I see girls every day who struggle with body image to the point that they think that they are ugly, develop eating disorders, harm themselves, or just feel worthless. I went through stages in middle and high school where I felt like I was never pretty enough - never tan enough, my hair never looked right, I was too skinny, my nose was too huge... The sad thing is, middle and high school are often the places where your peers feel comfortable critiquing your body and discussing your imperfections. Even if you say you don't care what people think about you, words still hurt and they can stick with you for years and years. It makes me so sad to know that so many girls go through life thinking that they are ugly and dwelling on their imperfections, when the God that created them love them so much and thinks they are perfect. 

I am constantly getting onto my students for talking about other people being ugly. I tell them that we are all beautiful and how words can cut so deep. 

... And it doesn't just end in high school… people in general are self-conscious about their bodies and we all have things that we wish that we could change. We need to remember that true beauty comes from within, and the person that the world may deem to be physically flawless might be ugly on the inside.  

The only reason I wasn't deeply hurt by the comment made to me today is because I've grown so close to the Lord in the past few years and I know I'm his daughter and that he loves me the way that I am and that my true value comes from within - not from what someone else thinks about my outward appearance.

What I really want to see is people building each other up, not tearing each other down. God created us all exactly the way he wants us to look. As imperfect people, who are we to decide what is imperfect about others? Insulting others' looks is basically saying God makes mistakes. 

Let's all try to remember that, and be comfortable in our own skin. 



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