He chose to give us birth through the word of truth, that we might be a kind of firstfruits of all he created. James 1:18
The scripture above from James 1:18 has rocked my world as God has been bringing something I’ve left in the darkness into the light. He has spoken truth to me over an area of my body that I’ve believed a lie. I’m about to drop some truth bombs in this post and I ask that you extend me grace and love as I share my heart and hidden struggles.
From the outside looking in many people think I look fit. I have people tell me how strong I am or how inspired they are by me. But, often when I hear those compliments I brush them off and think “If you only knew what lied beneath this shirt then you wouldn’t think I’m fit”.
Brace yourself, things are about to get real. I’ve had 3 babies(4 pregnancies but lost one at 14 weeks). I have a very short torso so with each pregnancy my belly got huge. With a huge belly comes stretch marks and excess skin with weight gain and loss(sorry for the TMI but you have to know that part for this story to be relevant).
My husband and I are in the health profession as our career(he is a chiropractor and me a group fitness instructor). Believe me when I say I know all the tips and tricks up the sleeve to lose weight and tighten and tone your belly. I’ve done them all and every time I am left empty and sad because my stretch marks and loose skin simply refuse to go away.
Have you ever noticed when you have a sensitive and insecure area the enemy knows it and picks on you in that area? A few years ago I went through a group fitness training and the man who did my evaluation told me “You are an excellent instructor but if you want to be an effective trainer you will need to look the part and lose that belly”. Talk about a shot through the heart. I walked away from that training ready to quit the fitness industry. It was so cold and judgmental. How could I be a part of that? And, in my case, only surgery itself might make my belly look normal again. I told God I was done.
But God had other plans. He began speaking to my heart about doing fitness HIS way. He also started teaching me how to take care of my body, HIS TEMPLE, HIS way. He began having me listen to christian music instead while I was working out and giving me power verses to memorize as I exercised. As I was praying about where to go from here I attended a blogging conference where I met Alisa Keeton, founder of a non-profit ministry called Revelation Wellness. As I learned more about this ministry I knew it was the next step God was calling me to take. In November 2015 I finished my 9 week certification and was an official Revelation Wellness Instructor. What does this mean? I am certified to bring freedom and hope through the tool of fitness!
This month Revelation Wellness has issued a #boldinthesoul Challenge. You ask God for a word or TRUTH over you and write it on yourself. I felt God ask me to let Him speak truth over this belly of mine. Better yet, He asked me to let my kids speak truth over me and write the words because those stretch marks and loose skin came from their LIFE!
Here are some fun pics of the process:
The picture on the right are all the words they wrote: Faithful, Ranger(Zeke requested this one because he thinks I’m a Power Ranger), Fighter, Beautiful, Clever, Strong, Fun.
And here is the finished product with each kids hand in the pic:
No, I do not have a six pack of abs but NO that does NOT disqualify me from God’s call on my life. No it does not mean I’m lazy or do not take care of my body. Here is the TRUTH:
Why am I qualified to teach group fitness and preach the gospel without having the perfect body? Because I get YOU. I get your struggles. I understand your pain. I know what it feels like to hate an area of your body so much that it consumes you and steals your joy. And because of that I am full of grace and a righteous anger to help you fight your way out of that place. You do not have to stay a slave my friend, YOU are a child of God and He LOVES every square inch of you!
If you would like to join our #boldinthesoul challenge and WIN tons of awesome prizes(one being a half off registration to become a Revelation Wellness instructor!) read this post for more details!! I can’t wait to hear how God speaks TRUTH to and over you!