#MondayMotivation: Self Image

Self-image is defined as “the idea one has of one’s abilities, appearance, and personality.” The idea of one’s self worth. It’s an opinion you have of your social standing. This means that you and only you have the power to put yourself down, or raise yourself up. But sometimes, society gets in the way.

The world’s view of self-image is undeniably distorted. The media tells you to be happy with your body and what you have, but the next moment they show you ads with beautiful women who no doubt have all their jeans in the size 0. They tell you to love you for you, but seconds later they showcase the Victoria’s Secret models all over malls and commercials. How are we supposed to feel happy with who we are when all of this is thrown at us?

The fad that is going around (or went around… I don’t keep up) called the thigh gap is the empty space some girls may attain between their thighs when they stand with their feet together… Which overall doesn’t sound that attractive when it is put that way. Usually this is attained by exercising frequently, but some girls even go so far as to starve themselves to “achieve” this gap, eventually leading to eating disorders like anorexia and bulimia. In case you didn’t know, eating disorders are very unhealthy and can lead to severe health problems in your future.

When we get tempted to think that we aren’t skinny or pretty enough, we should call to mind the verse in Isaiah 64:8 that says “Yet, O Lord, You are our Father; we are the clay, and You are our potter; we are all the work of Your hand.” Learn to be happy with who you are! Be happy with your ethnicity, size, and other wonderful traits! But always remember to owe it all to the Creator. Each of us is a unique work of art developed by God, our Father.

The media also affects our sense of style and choice of dress. They advertise the latest trends and must-haves. This constant consumer culture is innocent at first, but gets destructive and wasteful when you begin to think that you need everything. It’s come to the point where it’s not us who are shaping the world, but the world that’s shaping us. And that’s something we ought to change.

It especially begins to get destructive to our self-worth when the clothes we buy are immodest and revealing. Think about what you buy before you buy it. Ask yourself, “If Jesus were to visit me right now, would this be what I would want Him to see me in?” Immodesty in dress not only proves that we want attention, but that we are willing to deal with whatever attention we get, including the attention that we may not want.

But wait! You can be modest and stylish too! (Check out Chloe’s blogs and her tips on how). You don’t have to sacrifice style for modesty. Many think that the modest dress code is “borderline nun-wear”, but it’s really not that at all! It’s dressing like the daughter of a King. Our King. And what could be a better dress code than that? My favourite way of explaining modesty is using Jessica Rey’s words, “Modesty isn’t about covering up our bodies because they’re bad, modesty isn’t about hiding ourselves… it’s about revealing our dignity.”

Body-image seems to be the ultimate struggle of our world nowadays. Women and men constantly strive to fit the world’s idea of perfect, and it’s become so bad that we can’t even leave the house without seeing at least one advertisement portraying beautiful, flawless women and drop-dead gorgeous males.

But you know what? The world; the media, they aren’t telling you something. They aren’t telling you that there is a life beyond this, all this “perfection”. Beyond this so-called “perfection”, there lies an emptiness. A hole that no human can fill. Only the Lord, provided that you give Him the power to enter into your life and guide you through it, can fill it.

So why waste any more time then? Let’s just run on over to the nearest church and throw ourselves at Him saying, “Take it Jesus, take it! My life is all Yours! What are You waiting for?” Well, I apologize, but God doesn’t work that way. He doesn’t work as soon as you will it. All this takes time. Gradually, you will see your life transform; transform from selfishness into selflessness, from helplessness into hopefulness.

In the meantime, let us be the women and men who change this world. Let’s be that light in the darkness. Let’s make a change! (Cue my man MJ right here.)

The Challenge

As the challenge, I invite each one of you to reassure our fellow brothers and sisters-in-Christ that they are beautiful as well! Every Saturday of this month I challenge you to step out of your comfort zone, protective security bubble, or whatever you choose to call it, and compliment one person. If we can allow ourselves to make one small change in another’s life, imagine how good of a world it would be when every single one of us did something! We’d be moving mountains! (Please don’t literally try though. Don’t hurt yourself.)

And get this: it’s more affective if you compliment someone on their personality rather than on their shoes, or something else that makes up their outer appearance. Compliment someone for who they are and not their fabulous choice of dress. We are more than what we wear. It means so much more to be complimented on something we have that cannot be bought or made. Virtue is so much more out of reach, and to have attained it is a great achievement. Let us strive for virtue together!