“For freedom Christ has set us free; stand firm therefore, and do not submit to a yolk of slavery” – Galatians 5:1
Today is Good Friday, the day Jesus took His last breath on the cross. The day He gathered the weight of the world and restored balance in the most unexpected way possible. Talk about a plot twist. God on earth, submitting to a degrading death. For the sake of FREEDOM. Our freedom.
Lately I’ve been pondering the concept of freedom. My lastborn’s middle name is Freeman, as tribute to my grandpa (as that was his middle name as well). It’s a fitting name, since the last 2 and a half years that Rhett Freeman has graced this earth I have been on a “freedom journey” of sorts. God is breaking major chains in my life.
The thing about freedom… is that it’s free.
I didn’t pay for my freedom in Christ. There is nothing I can do to earn it or work for it. It is a gift.
I can think of a thousand ways this has brought peace and healing to my life. But lately, this freedom has come in the form of healing my relationship with body image and food.
I lived chained to the idol of body image almost my entire life. 2 Peter 2:19 says, “For whatever overcomes a person, to that he is enslaved.” I spent years overcome by the need to get my body to be how I wanted it to be. This diet plan, that interval routine, those ingredients.
It was stressful, it was tiresome, it was defeating, and it was enslaving.
I gave power to the scale. I made “perfect health” an idol. It took up my time and my energy, and it kept me from being grateful for what I have.
Instead of celebrating the use of my powerful legs, I bemoaned the fact that they are “thunder thighs.”
Instead of splashing joyfully in a swimsuit, I worried over whether others judged me for my belly.
Instead of smiling genuinely for the camera, I whined about being the one on the end that would look bigger than everyone else (I know you know what I mean).
I allowed magazines and Pinterest and Facebook and Instagram and so many before pictures to tell me what I needed to change, because I just wasn’t good enough in my current shape.
That isn’t living in freedom. That isn’t living in the present. That is slavery.
When I obsess over my body, I can’t be grateful for all the things it allows me to do – at this current size. I can’t live joyfully in the present when I am thinking about what will happen “when I lose those 10 pounds…” When I obsess over calories and portions, I can’t listen to my body’s hunger and fullness cues. When I stress over food content, I can’t even properly digest it! Nothing good comes from bowing to these idols.
Whether you are enslaved by the scale, a number, a diet plan, the “wellness” industry, overeating, or undereating, be reminded today that true freedom is free. Jesus took on your insecurities, your trauma, your relationship with food, your obsessiveness… so you could walk in the freedom of the knowledge that IT IS FINISHED.
He has given us new life and a hope that lasting transformation comes from Him and through Him. No diet, no meal plan, and no goal weight will heal my body image or relationship with food. But resting in the knowledge that He makes me WHOLE – just as I am, today – that is a promise that I can hold on to.
You have freedom. How will you use it?
“May God Himself, the God who makes everything holy and whole, make YOU holy and whole, put you together – spirit, soul, and body – and keep you FIT for the coming of our master, Jesus Christ.” – 1 Thessalonians 5:23