Obsessed with ThinnessNew Every Morning | February 26, 2023
Those of us in the United States live in a world that is obsessed with thinness—especially when it comes to women’s bodies. I recently pulled some data for the community surrounding the church I serve, and one statistic jumped off the page at me. In a survey on what life concerns are most important to people, losing weight was second on the list. The only item listed higher was financial concerns. Losing weight was more important to survey responders than their stress level, having a satisfying job, experiencing romance or intimacy, having time for family and friends, or finding direction in life. Moreover, losing weight was far higher on the list of concerns than personal health problems or a health crisis/illness. Diet culture rhetoric is frequently disguised as a “concern for health.” But this study shows that people are far more concerned with being skinny than being healthy.
—Anne Cummings, My Body Is Good: Giving Up Diet Culture and Embracing Body Positivity for Lent (Upper Room Books, 2022)
What helps you remember that God created your body as something good? Join the conversation.
Do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit within you, which you have from God, and that you are not your own? For you were bought with a price; therefore glorify God in your body.
—1 Corinthians 6:19-20 (NRSV)
Prayer for the Week
God of new beginnings, help me to
acknowledge, perhaps for the first time,
the beliefs about my body that I have
held for so long. Guide me in sorting
which beliefs are helpful and which are
harmful. Lead me back to you and
to this body that you called good. Amen.
Submit your prayer to The Upper Room.
Join us on March 18, 2023, for an online Academy Day Apart retreat, where we will focus on the spiritual practices of silence and contemplation as we journey intentionally through this Lenten season. We will be guided by Gabby Cudjoe-Wilkes and Andrew Wilkes, authors of Psalms for Black Lives. In our time together during this retreat, Gabby and Andrew will help us engage the Psalms to create a laboratory of justice imagination. Learn more and register here.
(Courtesy of Vanderbilt Divinity Library)
Looking for lectionary-based resources? Learn more about The Upper Room Disciplines.
I don’t have this problem – not recognizing my body as good and a gift from God. Even now as I am experiencing discomfort, getting a prognosis and moving forward. I struggle with the unknown of when I will get relief, but try to be intentional about gratitude regarding remaining active. Depending on the outcome of the ultrasound in a few weeks – surgery might be on the table. I have been thinking about this the past few days and I keep circling around to how fortunate I have been to never having to have surgery to this point in my life. My body has served me well, and I hope I have used it well to glorify my Father in Heaven.
Yesterday and time with my former student was a blessing. We enjoyed our lunch at a local Mexican restaurant, and I am finding “my lane” as far as what I enjoy with Mexican food. We went to the art fair and then to a nearby bakery. She got a leftover Mardi Gras king cake. We will be getting together for dinner in a few weeks.
My god son’s basketball team won their first tournament game last night. He played hard and well, ended up fouling out. They play this Thursday, about an hour north of where I live. Planning on going.
The sun is out here brilliantly. But, will forego a walk, as I have a tennis match this evening.
Church this morning was deeply meaningful. The music set before and after the sermon really makes my time of worship deeply personal. Grateful for the worship leader – such a humble young woman.
God enables us to use our bodies to spread God’s love, be God’s hands and feet, heart and soul. Whether you are a man or woman, this is all possible. People come in all sizes and shapes an we are directed to take care of our bodies. That doesn’t mean we should all be THIN. As long as you have cared for your body , done what you could to keep it healthy, size doesn’t matter.
Prayers that Jill will be able to continue to play tennis in some way or form. It gives her great joy to be able to do this. I will say that I no longer ski or skate, walking or snowshoeing have replaced them. I feel safe and yet can be physically active. I’m thankful that many of the activities I have done most of my life are still possible, sometimes a bit slower, but the end goal is still reached.
Thankful that Jill had a good time with her former student, has found a “lane” in Mexican food, an enjoyed watching your godson’s basketball game.
Church council meeting today via ZOOM. I can attend, but have no vote. Our new coordinating pastor and DS will attend. Will see what results.
Off to Bretton Woods tomorrow for skiing/snowshoeing, it’s snowing today, wonderful powder. More snow on Tuesday so we may return on Wednesday.
The railroad historical society journal has been proofread. It should be on its way to the printer and recipients. Awaiting the arrival of a model railroad coach kit, shipping was delayed.
Tuesday will be out first 40 Days with the Messiah study meeting.
Prayers for CCUMC members, Jennifer has heating problems, John has a bad liver – he’s in hospice care. Prayers for Julie caring for h, Ally and David, and all NEM family with needs. Thank You,