Tuesday, February 24, 2015

Two Ways to View Your Body

I love to cook and bake. This is a good thing because my family loves to eat. In my kitchen I have kitchen equipment and tools. I have a Kitchenaid mixer, whisks, spatulas, and bowls. I have knives, wooden spoons, and measuring cups. Each tool is designed for specific tasks and they aren't always interchangeable. 

Your body is also a tool. It houses your soul. Your body allows you to accomplish tasks: to walk, breathe, dance, write, hug a friend, grow a baby. Your body allows you to kneel and fill your backpack with books or tie your toddler's shoes. Your body is the tangible part of you. 

You should take care of your body and present it well.  I wash my kitchen equipment when it gets dirty. I do maintenance on my mixer. I clean the oven and wipe spills out of the microwave. Take care of your body. Give it the food it needs to work properly (ouch!). Exercise so it runs well. Maintain a healthy weight so you can use it at the optimal level. Don't put things in it that will destroy it. 

But remember it's a tool; it doesn't control you. You are not defined by what your body looks like.  God has designed each of us for the work He has for us; we are each unique, special, and different. 

Your body is also a temple. When you accept Jesus as your Savior, God comes to live within your heart. The Bible plainly tell us that we are the temple of God (1 Corinthians 3:16). We are a holy place, a sanctuary. That means we should clothe our bodies in a way that respects the presence of God. It's not yours to dress or present however you want. 

In the wilderness wanderings of the Israelites God lived in the tabernacle. There are extensive instructions about how the tabernacle was to be constructed and maintained. Later God's presence filled the temple that Solomon built. It was a place of majesty and beauty. That was where God lived. But now He lives within His people.

It is not wrong to develop a beautiful wardrobe. God cares about beauty. But it should also be modest and appropriate and feminine (assuming you're a woman!). We house God. When we start to take care of our body as a tool we can become obsessed with our appearance. But if we remember we are also the dwelling place of God we will be appropriate in how we present ourselves. 

Don't abuse your body by mistreatment; it is a tool for the work you are meant to do. Don't worship your body by improper presentation; it is the temple of God.

How were you taught to view your body? Do your beliefs affect how you dress and care for yourself? 

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