8/9 In Search of the Body Perfect

In this series on the Body and our personal Boardroom personality, we have seen how our thinking and behaviour will bring health or dys-function to our Body.  One of the biggest areas we see this is in our thinking about our own ‘Body Image’.

It’s all about Measuring sticks

We women have developed internal measuring sticks to judge ourselves, usually on a “1” to “10” scale.  So where do these images of perfection come from?   You’ll find them all around us: Magazines and movies, FOO, peers, culture in general and so on.  In fact, it isn’t really a new phenomenon. You can find such images in all the ancient cultures, from Diana to Venus.  Small and large idols, pictures and clay model show us the perfect female form.

For many reasons, women seem to struggle the most with this important issue.  Most males are far happier with their bodies – no matter what shape – than most women.  From childhood onwards girls collect M.S. from magazines, media and Western culture.  No matter how healthy and beautiful a woman’s body is, she still seems unhappy with it and expects others to be even more critical.  When a woman feels she doesn’t match the M.S. around her, she takes on Self-rejection.

In an era when women are supposed to be enjoying their ‘new sexual equality’, they still judge their bodies by unrealistic standards.  The majority of women go through cycles of dieting and gaining weight, food fads and fashion highs – perhaps even more than our mothers and grandmothers before us.  Billions of dollars are spent each year on cosmetics and hair products.  The clothing industry produces fashions worn by skinny supermodels, enticing women with “thin is beautiful”.  With all this money and fuss, most women still consider themselves far, far from perfect.  Why do women judge themselves so harshly?

So what is the answer?  Who has the responsibility to be change?

Self-Care starts with me!  If my self-image is out of balance with what and who I really am, then I must deal with the issue to bring health to my inner system.  We can’t blame others.  However tempting it may be to blame the Males in our culture for unrealistic measuring sticks, we must take responsibility for our own welfare!

Godly women have the power to change!  We need to discover an Image that Father God has provided for us. If a woman is caught up in the nonsense of striving to create what cannot be, she will be miserable.  Much of women’s ‘crazy eating’ is displacement activity, compensation for their need for love.

The real answer is to learn to treat yourself with true love.  You are the only one who can do this for you!  Find God’s healthy Measuring Stick!

Accepting God’s design

Every time you reject your Body, you are rejecting God’s design for womanhood!  God designed women with curves, whether to please her Adam or to comfort and help nurture children, curves are there to stay.  In fact, God designed curves to the opposite of male’s ‘angles’.  Submit your body image to Jesus, Consciously, deliberately put your body image under the Lordship of Jesus.  Discard your biases, toward your body, in favour of His view.

1.  Complete a Health inventory with regard to your Body found in our next post,

2.  Develop problem solving steps to change what HE says needs to be,

3.  Learn to live with whatever JESUS says doesn’t need to change,

4.  Set others free to judge you and set yourself free to live the way God created you to be.  To some degree every woman is afflicted by this dissatisfaction with herself as she is.

I remember reading a magazine article interviewing some of the famous models in the news.   They were asked about their body image, what they liked and didn’t like about their body.  Quess what …. every one of them found things they didn’t like about their body even though to their readers, they seemed ‘perfect’.

Most women don’t look like supermodels – and never will, even with years of plastic surgery or ‘Posh Spice’ diets.  Most women are also smart enough to know that supermodels must have an element of masochism, to remain as desperately thin as many of them do.  As Christ-followers, we need to find Father God’s view of us, not the Media’s.  Learning to be the best that we can be is essential, without tying into the ‘perfection’ of the World’s image-makers.

Susanne Fengler, Blog Author



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