Every day, millions of us wake up, groggily shuffle to the bathroom, and look in the mirror. But what we see isn’t exactly correct.
The person who looks back at us is not a true reflection of who we are.
I have never run across a single person who didn’t want to change at least one part of their appearance. For some of us, it’s a more consuming issue; but I see so many people affected by image problems. I don’t even have to list them. You’ve probably already got yours in the forefront of your mind.
You do, don’t you?
For a while, I was a moderator for a food and exercise tracking web forum. Part of the forum included an area that focused on eating disorders. I interacted with a number of girls there who saw themselves as flawed and could not see the beauty that existed within them. It was the saddest part of my job; but I loved being able to speak truth to the ones who were willing to listen.
There’s a book I would recommend to anyone struggling with body image called The Look That Kills. I first heard about it from Pete Wilson’s blog, Without Wax. This sentence from the author about why she wrote the book really resonates with me:
As a perfectionist who has spent most of my life proving that I am always right and covering up anything that someone could potentially view as a mistake, this was totally unchartered ground.
The author struggled with anorexia and compulsive exercise disorder. She finally reached rock bottom, a near death wake-up call, that finally allowed her to abandon control of her life to God and find true freedom in Christ.
Really, though, the issue runs deeper than just how we look. It’s more than our size, shape, hair color, nose, etc. that we see distorted. To us, the scars we carry (physically, emotionally, mentally) mar any remains of beauty that may have once existed.
We often fight to believe that God has forgiven us of all our sins. Especially, you know, that really bad thing.
Do you ever find yourself arguing with God about who you are? Mandisa’s song, “The Truth About Me,” reflects that struggle. In a short, but powerful video, Mandisa explains the story behind the song.
You say, “LOVELY.”
I say, “broken.”
I say, “guilty.”
You say, “FORGIVEN.”
God, forgive us for forgetting that you have made us in your image. It’s so much easier to see the flaws. Give us the strength to focus on your reflection instead of our own. To shift the angle of view when we look into a mirror; so we no longer see ourselves. Instead of reflecting what our sin nature or society want us to look at, give us eyes to see what you see. Help us to believe you call us LOVELY, BELOVED, FORGIVEN, and more. In the name of Jesus, Amen.
Today is Day 25 of 31 Days of Prayer for the Hurting.