The Battle for a Healthy Body Image
Dieting. Cleansing. Low Carb. No Carb. High protein. Sugar-free.
Living in a media-saturated culture is hard on our self-esteem. Marketing experts estimate that we are exposed to more than 5,000 advertisements per day. Time and time again, the message is relayed: Who we are is not enough. The world constantly tells us we need to be thinner, leaner, tighter, fitter.
But for some, the message of terminal imperfection doesn’t stop with external sources. We also hear an inner voice that plays a loop- ing soundtrack of disapproving, venomous criticism – a voice that hisses at every bite of food taken, every workout skipped, and every mirror in our path.
When your world begins to define your worth instead of your Creator, you have entered a dangerous battle God never intended for you to fight.
Eating disorders and body image issues can affect anyone, male or female, and at any age. While it is good to be aware of how you fuel your body and care for it, the line between healthy and unhealthy can get blurred and crossed. When your world begins to define your worth instead of your Creator, you have entered a dangerous battle for identity that God never intended for you to fight.
God Has Already Declared You Worthy
Genesis 1:27 tells us we are made in the image of God. The Bible also says God is enthralled with who we are (Psalm 45:11). He truly delights in us!
Our bodies are intricately designed by God. Every hair on our head, every freckle, and perceived flaw are divinely designed by the Creator of the universe. He does not make mistakes. You were created on purpose, for a purpose, and with a purpose.
The relentless voice of an eating disorder has one purpose: to convince you that you are not worthy. When the battle with body image goes too far, it becomes unrelenting. Calories, fat grams, weight, clothing size – all of those numbers begin to dominate your life. What began as a healthy awareness begins to consume your whole self, and you begin to feel you are spinning wildly out of control.
How to Move Toward Freedom
There is hope. In God, you are more than a number. You are His child (Psalm 82:6). While an eating disorder intends to steal your identity, the good news is that in Christ, you have already been claimed (Romans 12:2). God tells us we are loved; we deserve to take up space. We are not a burden. We matter to Him. We are wonderful in His sight (Psalm 139:14).
You do not have to be at war with yourself. Take steps by speaking with a professional counselor or therapist and by seeking medical help. Seeking professional help and breaking the chains of secrecy will give you the freedom to be rebuilt into who God intended for you to be.
While eating disorders thrive in secrecy, there is freedom to be found in sharing your struggle. You can’t fight it alone.