Have you ever seen a picture of yourself and thought, “Oh my goodness, that’s awful?” Or better yet, maybe you’ve been the one that called your friend or sent a private message to say, “Please take that picture of me off the internet. It’s terrible!!”
When I saw myself on this video, I gasped. I had never posted a video on my blog up to this point and was thinking I might never. That whole thing about videos making you look heavier is right on. I began battling thoughts like, “You look so fat. How ugly. You aren’t seriously going to post this video, are you? What will people think? You weigh more now than you’ve ever weighed in your life. The majority of your blog followers will be “seeing” you for the first time. First impressions can never be changed. Are you crazy?”
I had seen this war before, this spiritual battle over my mind. It was familiar. I recognized the enemy’s lies right away. This was my first video for World Changer Wednesday, which was a segment God had inspired me to start to encourage our generation to be world changers for Him. The enemy never wants us to do what God’s asking us to do, so he’ll stoop to all levels of low to prevent us. Discouraging me with my body image, which was a new one, was a good place to start!
The Holy Spirit reminded me, “Don’t be so vain, Rivera. Humble yourself, and I will raise you up. Charm is deceitful and beauty is fading, but a woman who fears Me is to be praised. Stop worrying about what people think and worry about what I think. To Me you are beautiful. I designed you just the way you are, and I love you. I’m the only One who matters. I asked you to do this, so don’t let something so silly and self-centered keep you from following Me and the plans I have for you.”
Aren’t we all a little bit vain at times? Pride gets mixed in with already volatile emotions and tries to ruin everything.
I knew the truth, but insecurity and lies were screaming loud. Tears flowed. Why was I being so ridiculous? I had never struggled with body image. I had other weaknesses, believe me, but feelings of looking terrible were not typically my struggle. I was blindsided by it. Now what!
As I poured my heart out, I asked God to help me see myself the way He sees me. And I had a boxing match with Satan, in Jesus’ name. I can’t say my feelings–hugely unreliable at best– went away, right away. But Jesus helped me muster the courage to push the button and publish the video.
It’s easy to find ourselves battling the lies that so easily entangle us. Remember if the Son sets us free, we are free indeed. (Jn. 8:36) When the enemy tells us we’re crazy. Jesus reminds us, “God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind” (2 Tim. 1:7). Jesus is our source of strength, truth, and confidence. Our relationship with Him gives us reason to stand tall no matter what battle we face.