Sunday, December 20, 2015

pride, charity, and body image.

I've been thinking a lot lately. Mostly since the Ezra Taft Benson lesson on pride back in....September? (Had it again here on Saipan in November) In that lesson it says (quote by President Benson) "The proud stand more in fear of men's judgement than of God's judgement. 'What will men think of me?' Weighs heavier than 'What will God think of me?'" It also talks about comparison and how putting yourself above others and basically all forms of comparing yourself to others are prideful. I have spent a LOT of time thinking about pride since then (as I discovered I am EXTREMELY prideful, haha) Not comparing myself to others is something I have been working on for a Long Long time. It is difficult for me, but I have noticed as I have gotten better about it, I am happier with myself, and happier in general. Something that has helped me stop comparing is trying to see others as God sees them, and to focus on the good in people and to love them for who they are. So as I have lessened my comparing, my charity for others has improved. Crazy how that works! :) (also, if you want some real food for thought about charity, check out all of 1 Cor. 13, in particular verse 13. crazy cool.) I have been focusing more on pleasing God than man, and I try to ask myself what my motive is for doing something. There are many things we do that are "good", but what is our motive? For example- do you keep your body healthy to obey the word of wisdom, or to get the praise of men for having a "hot body". I used to be a combination of the two, and I still am to a very small degree, but trying to improve :)
Yesterday I received a compliment about how amazing my body is, especially for having 3 kids. (her words- NOT mine! ha) I mostly felt awkward. There are so many things that I want to be and are so much more important than being thin. And I know some will say 'oh you can say that, because you are slim' but it's not true. I weighed 115 (at 5'7") and had major body issues. You can love your body at any size. Anyway- 3 years ago, that compliment would have made my whole week. But yesterday I realized that I didn't really care that much what my body looks like or what other people think about it. That being said- I believe my body is beautiful. Not in a worldly way, but in an "I am a woman and have a beautiful body that God gave me and that does amazing things" way. This is hard to explain, but I strongly believe Heavenly Father wants us to take good care of our bodies and treat them properly and keep them healthy. I also believe he doesn't care about their size or shape (assuming we are living the word of wisdom and keeping them healthy!!). I have cellulite all over and some stretch marks on my inner thighs... and I sag in places that I never did prior to having kids.. But I don't really care. Isn't that completely normal? Doesn't pretty much everyone that's had a kid and/or is over 30 have all that (minus a very small percentage)? Who decided it's "ugly" or "bad"? It's all a lie! It's perfectly normal and it isn't "ugly" at all. I am still beautiful. I guarantee Heavenly Father doesn't think it's ugly, and I also guarantee it saddens Him when we listen to the lies, created by Satan, and deem ourselves "ugly" or "not enough". Just live a healthy life and your body IS enough! We are all enough! I have ways that I need to improve in the health department, I am not perfect (ahem.. total sugar addict..sigh.) but I AM enough. And it doesn't matter where someone else is in their journey. And not because you are probably further along in some things than they are (not cool when people say that, that is still comparing!) but because we are all human and we are all progressing. Sometimes slowly, and sometimes quickly. It's a beautiful life, and I don't see any sense wasting it on things that will never bring happiness. That's the thing about comparing- it will NEVER bring happiness. Doing things to please men- will NOT bring happiness. Knowing Heavenly Father loves you, and loving and caring for His children- that brings happiness.

I'm hoping to sit down and start writing about our Saipan adventure soon! It's a crazy place here, but very difficult to describe! We are adjusting. :)

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