Peace family, this past weekend, I went to Galveston, and there was a lot to take in!
There were many things I enjoyed; I got to see purple seahorses, penguins, and a cinnamon tree at Moody Gardens, I walked the beach at sunset and saw scampering crabs, and I got to visit the Strand, which is always a lot of fun. However, do you know what was especially refreshing?
There were so many bodies there around town and on the beach, and none of them were “perfect.” Leonardo da Vinci used to say that beauty and ugliness were both within every man, and this is still true! It was nice to get a reality check of seeing what real bodies of real people are like.
Sometimes, when the only bodies we see are in movies or magazines, it’s easy to feel like something is wrong with ourselves. We feel like we are the only person with flaws, while the whole world out there is more like the magazines and movies. However, that’s absolutely a skewed perspective!
While I did see some unhealthy bodies, I saw many healthy bodies that looked different ways, in all shapes and sizes. Even if our bodies aren’t “beautiful” as defined by photoshop, they are useful, and beautiful to God! I saw both moms and dads hefting babies, and one mom breast-feeding her baby under a blanket. I saw strong-armed old men driving trucks, and toddlers jumping in the shallow beds of foamy water. A middle school boy opened a door for me, the servers in our restaurants balanced heavy trays of food, and there was even a man in a wheel chair who had a shriveled hand, who waved to us with his other arm and welcomed us to one of the displays at Moody Gardens.
Peace family, you are beautiful. It is easy to compare ourselves to a false standard, but we often greatly fall short in adequately valuing our bodies. Let’s take care of our bodies, have grace for our bodies (and those of other people), and give thanks to God for our bodies. Let’s learn to appreciate the beauty and usefulness of our bodies, no matter what society tells us.