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  • Ashley

True Beauty

For the past several years (and in the midst of three pregnancies), I have struggled with my weight.  For me, the biggest concern was not being healthy.  At my last well check-up, my BMI was in the overweight section (a first for me).  As my 30s are approaching, I wanted to make changes.  I was tired of feeling so “blah” (for lack of a better term, haha).  I wanted more energy.  I wanted to feel good about my body and image.

With good guidance, determination, and work, I have lost some weight over the past few months.  It feels great!  (Bear with me, I’m not sharing this to brag.)

I’ve been obsessing a lot over what I’m eating, what the scale says, and how my clothes fit.  There is absolutely nothing wrong with taking care of our bodies.  It’s important.

I was struck with a thought the other day, though.  If true beauty lies within, what am I doing to work on my character?  I’ve given much effort to improve the physical over the past months, but what have I done to improve who I am as a person?

When I went grocery shopping this past week, I noticed that all of my go-to health foods were scarce or missing from the shelves.  It’s the tell-tale sign that January diets are in full swing!

To lose weight, one has to carefully consider the food that is consumed.  Is it beneficial to the body to eat what is on the plate or not?  Exercising the body is also important.  We have to be willing to move and get the heart rate up.

As I am stepping into the new year, I must evaluate what I’m putting into my mind and heart.  What am I watching, listening to, and reading?  Is it constructive and God-honoring?  Am I being challenged by spending time with God?  Where is my time going and how is being spent?  What am I doing to grow as a person, wife, mother, and friend?

Yes, I want to take care of my body (it’s the only one I have on this earth)!  I want to be beautiful.  But I’m not really talking about physical beauty because that fades.  I want to be someone that is beautiful because of what is on the inside.  No… WHO is on the inside. The most beautiful people I know are those that just radiate God.  They are the ones that  walk so closely with Him that you can’t separate the two.

I desire nothing more than for God to continue to shape and consume me, but I have to be willing to go to the “gym.”  It’s a relationship and a process that requires me to get out of the Lazyboy, to stop “eating” junk, and to exercise my faith.  It will be hard to put away the “sweets.”  I will get uncomfortable and sweaty.  However, it will be worth it because of the changes that will result.

True beauty lies within because true beauty comes from Him.

 “I am not what I ought to be, I am not what I want to be, I am not what I hope to be in another world; but still I am not what I once used to be, and by the grace of God I am what I am.”  – John Newton

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