Your physical body is quite amazing.

I’m not writing that to be weird. No. But, we’re appreciating our bodies on this day 2 of the Loving The Skin You’re In blog series. (You can find day 1 here.) Today we’re focusing on what our bodies do. Hang here with me for a few minutes. Let’s be inspired together.

Loving The Skin You're In - Appreciating Your Body

In our culture, the appearance of our physical bodies is greatly emphasized. The size, the shape, the build. The perfectly-fit bodies and the age-defying faces. But, you already know that. You see the air-brushed images in magazines and the ads for the latest and greatest anti-aging creams. Messages of attaining the perfect body and defying age are everywhere. They tell us we’ll be happy after we look “perfect.”

But, aren’t our physical bodies about so much more?

Aren’t they more than something pretty to look at? You and I, both, know the answer to that. Yes, they are. Our physical bodies are more than just skin deep. They are valuable and quite remarkable. But, I don’t always think about–and appreciate–what my body can do. And, I can get wrapped up in what society tells me is important about my body.

Something happens, though, when I think about how my body was created. My perspective changes. I focus less on the superficial and more on the eternal. And, I am reminded again that our bodies were created for much more than just pretty outward appearances. Our Creator designed our bodies intricately.

You and I are wonderfully made.

Take a look:

For you created my inmost being; you knit me together in my mother’s womb. I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well.

Psalm 139:13-14 NIV

The VOICE translation says it this way:

For You shaped me, inside and out. You knitted me together in my mother’s womb long before I took my first breath. I will offer You my grateful heart, for I am Your unique creation, filled with wonder and awe. You have approached even the smallest details with excellence; Your works are wonderful; I carry this knowledge deep within my soul.

Psalm 139:13-14 VOICE

Yes, God designed you and me uniquely. Down to the finest detail, He created us marvelously, with excellence. That’s pretty amazing isn’t it?

Notice, however, not one word mentions our outward appearance in these verses. Not one. So, why do we put so much emphasis on that? Well, maybe it’s because we’ve been taught to. Or, because that’s the part of us people see. That’s what others notice. And, that’s what we see in the mirror.

It’s no wonder we don’t love the skin we’re in.

We don’t have perfect bodies. Not one of us. Even if someone appears to have one, he or she does not.

For as long as I can remember, I’ve not liked my thighs. They are bigger than I’d like them to be. (I’ve written about this before.) Even back in high school, I didn’t like them. I’d go as far as saying I hated them. Especially when my friends had skinnier thighs than me. (We’ll talk about comparing ourselves tomorrow.) God, why did you give me big thighs? I assume I inherited them from my mom, as her thighs were on the bigger side as well, even though she was a thin woman. I could work out until the cows come home and still have these thighs. (Believe me, I’ve tried.)

But, a few years ago, something clicked after my husband and I finished our first RAGBRAI. I came to the reality that these thighs helped peddle our tandem bicycle across the state of Iowa in seven days. (Now for six years in a row!) Up monstrous hills, over long stretches, and through everything in between. I couldn’t have done it without these thighs.

Also, my thighs enable me to run. (I picked up running again in August, and I love it.) They enable me to walk. To dance at my nephew’s wedding last weekend. They help me get around. They help me do what I do.

My thighs are amazing! They may not be the skinniest or the most toned, but there’s no reason to detest them. I now consider them a gift! Thank you, God, for giving me these thighs!

What if we focused on what our bodies do, instead of how they look?

Wouldn’t that make all the difference? Take a moment today to list the specific things your body can do. Everything from getting out of bed in the morning to breathing to seeing to feeling. List it all, and thank God for each one. Allow yourself to see that part of your body you haven’t liked, now in an entirely new light. Begin to see it as the gift it is!

Friend, your body is amazing.

No matter its size or shape. No matter its build or stature. It’s remarkable! Appreciate your body and all it does today.

Much love!

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