Thursday, May 30, 2013

Body Grace

Sometimes I try to lose weight, sometimes I don't. Sometimes I avoid what I'm allergic to, sometimes I don't. Sometimes I exercise, sometimes I don't.

In every case, my motivation is the same.

I hate my body.

Then one day, I look in the mirror. I listen for the lies that always come, but they have suddenly lost their power. Instead, I hear a new truth.

I like my shape.

It feels all wrong at first, liking my shape. I keep it a secret, just between me and God. Shy. Wary of being misunderstood and subsequently cautioned about my health.

Jeff likes my body. A lot. In fact, he loves it. He says it's mysterious and soft and smooth and beautiful and desirable. He says it for twelve years because that's what he sees. What he sees helps me accept my new secret truth.

A week goes by. I feel free. Peaceful. Beautiful.

I decide to tell Jeff my secret.

"I like my body," I say tentatively.

"So do I," says Jeff with a wink.

"No, I mean, I looked in the mirror and realized that I don't hate my body anymore. I don't know... I just... like it. It's a good shape."

I shrug.

Jeff puts his arms around me. "I've been tellin' ya that..."

"I want to be healthy, of course," I mumble quickly into Jeff's shirt, to cover my social bases, "but if I never lose another pound for the rest of my life, that will be okay. I like myself the way I am now."

Jeff pulls back and looks at me keenly. "Because...?" he prompts.

"Because I'm in Christ," I say.

Jeff nods, satisfied.

I ponder my new perspective over the next several days, and I define the shift.

God has taken me from body law to body grace. In Christ.

"See to it that no one takes you captive through hollow and deceptive philosophy, which depends on human tradition and the elemental spiritual forces of this world rather than on Christ. For in Christ all the fullness of the Deity lives in bodily form, and in Christ you have been brought to fullness. He is the head over every power and authority." ~ Colossians 2:8-10