“I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well” (Psalm 139:14).

America is obsessed with body image. A recent study revealed that over 80% of women in America are not satisfied with their appearance. What doesn’t help is the fact that on average, models who are plastered all over the billboards and television advertisements are 7 inches taller and 23 pounds lighter than the average American woman. Unfortunately, this worldly image has affected how we view not only ourselves, but also others in our church. Instead of using Scripture as the standard, we are applying worldly standards in our lives. A church in Oregon has the following statement on their guidelines for worship leaders: “Weight is something that many people have to deal with. Make sure that you are taking care of your temple, exercising and eating properly.” The underlying message behind this statement is an implication that worship leaders cannot be overweight at this particular church. Instead of following the world’s standards that cannot be measured up against, we need to look to Scripture as our standard and mirror. Here are a few verses from Scripture that reflect our image — First, we are reminded that God looks at our hearts (1 Samuel 16:7). So, instead of wondering if we are too ugly or not on the outside, let us examine our hearts on a regular basis and allow the Holy Spirit to sanctify and purify our hearts. We are also “fearfully and wonderfully made (by God)” (Psalm 139:14). This truth should completely transform the way we look at not only ourselves, but also others. Let us remember that if we are in Christ, “we are a new creation. The old has passed away; behold, the new has come” (2 Corinthians 5:17). Am I advocating that we should not be healthy? No! On the contrary, I am stating that transformation needs to take place from the inside-out. May we bring glory to God by not following the standards of this world, but by what’s written in God’s Word. Sola Scriptura!

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