To Be Like Her

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Our family has been settling into our new life in North Carolina for four weeks now. This move has opened our eyes to some new sights, new temperatures (hot!), new people, a new culture, and all other forms of newness a move brings a person’s way.

We expected all of that, but would you like to hear what I didn’t expect to see?

Everywhere I look there are moms in the best shape I’ve ever seen a mom to be. Moms with muscular legs and toned arms. Moms in workout wear around every corner in every store. Moms who seem to live and breathe for their next chance to exercise. Moms who look like they’ve never given birth to the three kids they’re out and about with. It’s kind of blowing my mind.

I think I notice them mostly because I know that exercise is what my life is severely lacking at this point. Getting my body moving is one of the things I think about every single day. It’s kind of like when you’re pregnant, or desire to be pregnant and you begin to see pregnant ladies everywhere. You can’t miss them.

All of this in-shape mama people-watching has gotten me thinking. Are all these moms just on their A-game when it comes to taking care of their bodies in a healthy way, living a healthy lifestyle? Or are they caught up in the pressure to be gorgeous with a gorgeous body to boot, willing to do anything to make it happen?

I can’t figure it out. 

The reason doesn’t really matter — either way, I know my reaction to it hasn’t been real healthy. Even when it’s 95 degrees I’ve wanted to hide, cover my arms, and steer clear of shorts rather than take charge of my own health like these women have.

Then I tell myself to get a grip. My life isn’t a carbon copy of theirs (far from it!) and my body has been through a lot, so I shouldn’t compare. And my health, for the most part, is a result of my choices. The good and also the poor ones.

Here’s the thing: I always want to make sure I’m seeing myself in light of the gospel truth. We are fully loved and fully known, with a temple (body) we’ve been entrusted to take good care of. But sometimes we forget, don’t we?

We forget how fully loved and fully known we are in Christ.

Sometimes I don’t think I deserve to be loved for how my body looks, and I most certainly don’t always want to be fully known (hello, swimsuit season).

In those times, I’ve got it completely backwards and I know it. Don’t we usually know it? We know it, but we don’t know how to get outside the mindset that we need and want to be like HER. Act like her. Treat our family like her. Workout like her. Have a severe lack of cellulite like her.

We get stuck in that trap again and again. But here’s the other thing: we shouldn’t strive to be like her when God is asking us to be like HIM.

We get sidetracked so easily fixing our eyes on the temporary, while temporarily ignoring what we know to be true.

Yep, that’s us. Even though we’re fickle and we get it wrong, HE. LOVES. US.

It might sound cliché and we hear about God’s love all the time, but it’s true.

HE LOVES YOU. You are so important to God that He offered His one and only Son Jesus as the One who would receive the death we all deserve. When God looks at us, He sees Jesus.

I don’t know of a greater love than that.

Amanda Bacon
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Amanda Bacon

Amanda is the mother of eight kids through birth and adoption and has been married for eighteen years to the most helpful man on the planet. She is an encouraging voice for moms everywhere through the written and spoken word. In addition to The Masterpiece Mom blog and podcast, she also writes at AmandaBacon.com and is over the top in love with Instagram (@amanda_baconbits). Come over and say hi!
Amanda Bacon
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About Amanda Bacon

Amanda is the mother of eight kids through birth and adoption and has been married for eighteen years to the most helpful man on the planet. She is an encouraging voice for moms everywhere through the written and spoken word. In addition to The Masterpiece Mom blog and podcast, she also writes at AmandaBacon.com and is over the top in love with Instagram (@amanda_baconbits). Come over and say hi!

Comments

  1. Thank you! What I love about this is that I think these things often and it’s good to know that other moms are thinking these things TOO. That is not just me being all weirdly-hyper emotional or something! LOL! 🙂 I’ve struggled with my weight through my many pregnancies and it can really become something that bogs me down emotionally. I love that you encouraged us to look to the Lord…His love for us has nothing to do with the world’s standards and culture. Of course, I should always be challenging myself with health, but it just has to have a proper place in my heart and life, otherwise it can because an idol. Thanks again.

    • You’re so right. We should always be challenging ourselves with health, and yes, it has it’s proper place! Good words. 🙂

  2. QUIT LOOKING SIDEWAYS!!! (I don’t say this from any area of strength, mind you… I’m as guilty of it as the next woman 😏) I’m just reminded of Adam & Eve hiding in the garden.

    God: Why are you hiding?

    Adam: We’re naked.

    God: ’bout time you figured that out & covered up.

    Oh, wait! That’s not what he said…

    God: WHO told you you were naked (and should be ashamed of the bodies I gave you)?

    GOD is NOT the author of shame!!!

    And you are beautiful, Amanda, and certainly have nothing to hide!

  3. Amanda-this was so perfect.. I always feel like I get stuck in the comparison trap!As I read it I kept thinking about how beautiful you were when we met for coffee in Alaska at Jitters.. There is so much more and it all is about perspective and balance and keeping on doing what God wants us to focus on..Blessings to you as you continue to adjust to NC!!

  4. Seriously you’re reading my mind! My husband just competed in his first triathlon. I volunteered as a crossing guard for the bike path. We were surrounded by some amazingly fit people for an entire day. I had that twinge of not measuring up, or comparing myself to others.
    I had to push through some serious negative (and even judgmental!) thoughts. I know I should get in that walk everyday, not just for physical health but for mental well being as well. I tend to want to cross a finish line in victory without wanting the disciplined training that goes with it. I know my value is in Christ, and I also know He wants to teach me to make wise, healthy choices in all areas of my life!
    Thanks for being real!

  5. Amanda,
    I love your article. I also admire you so much! You life is such a reflection of Christ. You are so much an example of the proverbs 31 woman. I really love how you said should we admire HER or HIM!

    Love and blessings sweet friend!

  6. As a former North Carolinian myself, I had always wondered if this fit-women phenomenon was for real or just in my head! Does the heat magically burn calories? (I live in AK; surely there is some explanation for this!) Truly, though, the beast of comparison can thrive in any climate. Thanks for acknowledging that the struggle is real and addressing it with such wisdom.

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