As a mom of two little girls, never have I been more aware of my body image than I am now. The postpartum body is a difficult thing. It’s hard not to mourn the changes you experience, and your body image suffers. Combine that with the excessive sculpting and reshaping that our culture focuses on us with all the “Flat Abs Fast” and “Bikini Body” promises and it’s no wonder “91% of women are unhappy with their bodies. Unfortunately, only 5% of women naturally possess the body type often portrayed by Americans in the media.” (source: dosomething.org)
As Christians, we can live free of these constraints by believing and living by God’s Word. He tells us in no uncertain terms who we are, how He sees us, and therefore, how we are to view ourselves, through His lens, not the world’s.
Of course, I struggle with this just as much as the next girl. When there are images of thinner, younger, taller, tanner, prettier women everywhere I look. When I’ve grown up scrutinizing my image in the mirror, in pictures, online. When I envy the looks, clothes, bodies of nearly every woman I see. I don’t know about you, but my body image battle field is definitely in my mind, and I need some supernatural ammo to retaliate when the bombs of self-hatred bombard me.
Here are 15 Positive Body Image Bible Verses to bring us victory in the midst of our body image battles:
Lord, I pray that you will renew my mind, my thinking about my body, my looks, and my worth. I pray that you will not allow my thoughts to be dominated by the world’s vision of beauty and worth, but transform my way of thinking to Yours.
“Brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things.” Philippians 4:8
Lord, I pray that you will allow my thoughts to move to whatever is true, noble, right, pure, lovely, admirable, about myself instead of picking and tearing myself apart. I pray that you would occupy my mind with such things, whatever is excellent or praiseworthy, so that I have no room or time to think negatively about my body or my looks.
Lord, let me wear my wrinkles and gray hairs and changing, aging body with pride and grace. Let me see the changes in my body as I age as evidence of a life lived, telling the story of who I am, and not long to remove all evidence of my history or experiences in longing for a more youthful appearance.
Lord, help me remember that there is glory and splendor in each age of life. That with each change of my appearance comes a new opportunity for gratitude. I may not have the strength and vigor of my youth, but I can be grateful for the longevity that lead me to gray hairs and wrinkles.
Lord, help me to remember that you care deeply about me. That even my very hairs are numbered. And the very hairs on my head are numbered, that means you chose each tiny particle and portion of my body with great care. You have a divine purpose
“I also want the women to dress modestly, with decency and propriety, adorning themselves, not with elaborate hairstyles or gold or pearls or expensive clothes, but with good deeds, appropriate for women who profess to worship God.” 1 Timothy 2:9-10
Lord, help me to remember to cloth myself in good deeds and true worship, and not to worry about how fashionable I am. Though fashion can be fun and is a wonderful way to express myself, it is not where my beauty, worth, confidence, or security comes from.
“Your beauty should not come from outward adornment, such as elaborate hairstyles and the wearing of gold jewelry or fine clothes. Rather, it should be that of your inner self, the unfading beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit, which is of great worth in God’s sight.” 1 Peter 3:3-4
Lord, grow in me a gentle and quiet spirit, a heart hungry to know, follow, and serve You. Let me find worth and value in the beauty of my inner self as a new creation in Christ, not feeling ashamed or overly concerned about my hair or clothes. These things can be fun, but can also be very distracting and even harmful. Help me to keep beauty and fashion in perspective.
“When Moses came down from Mount Sinai with the two tablets of the covenant law in his hands, he was not aware that his face was radiant because he had spoken with the Lord.” Exodus 34:29
Lord, I pray that I would have an inner radiance that shines through every inch of my being from being in Your presence and seeking after You. Let others see that radiance when they look at me, the beautiful glow of a follower of Christ, and let me remember it is that glow which makes me truly beautiful. A beauty that points others to You.
I sought the Lord, and he answered me;
he delivered me from all my fears.
Those who look to him are radiant;
their faces are never covered with shame. Psalm 34:4-5
Lord, please remove my shame in my appearance. Please remove the shame I feel from all the comparison and hurtful words and self-loathing I’ve experienced over the years. I will look to you and I will be made radiant from your presence. Help me to seek after that radiance.
Lord, help me to remember when I am embarrassed, ashamed, or distracted by my looks, that all of this is fleeting. You are eternal. Seeking after You is an investment in forever. My fear of You is my greatest beauty.
“The Lord does not look at the things people look at. People look at the outward appearance, but the Lord looks at the heart.” 1 Samuel 16:7
Lord, You see me and You know me. You know my heart and my deeds. You see beyond my outward appearance to the child and follower You love so dearly, the one you have great plans for. Help me to see myself with Your eyes.
“Your heart became proud
on account of your beauty,
and you corrupted your wisdom
because of your splendor.
So I threw you to the earth;
I made a spectacle of you before kings.” Ezekiel 28:17
Lord, help me to remember that part of Satan’s fall came because of his beauty and splendor. It is not evil to be attractive, but I should be careful not to allow the Enemy a foothold in my heart through my looks. Let me not become proud or corrupted. Let me be grateful, humble, and see myself rightly, through your eyes.
“Then God said, ‘Let us make mankind in our image, in our likeness, so that they may rule over the fish in the sea and the birds in the sky, over the livestock and all the wild animals, and over all the creatures that move along the ground.’ God saw all that he had made, and it was very good. And there was evening, and there was morning—the sixth day.” Genesis 1:26,31
Lord, I am made in Your image. Help me to fully grasp that. And You have called that creation “good.” Let me live that and know it.
“I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made;
your works are wonderful,
I know that full well.” Psalm 139:14
Do I really believe this, God? Do I praise You for how You have made me? Do I look at myself and see that Your works are wonderful? Help me to see that in myself without vanity or conceit, without self-hatred or shame, but with praise, gratitude and awe of You.
“For we are God’s handiwork, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do.” Ephesians 2:10
Lord, I am your handiwork, created to DO good works. Not to be looked at or envied or lusted after. You prepared in advance for me to DO good works, and in the DOING I have divine value and purpose and worth. Help me to live in this truth.
I hope these verses have been an encouragement to you. I would love to know if there are any other verses or quotes that you lean on to battle body insecurities!