Lies Moms Believe: Lie #6
lie #6: my body has been ruined
By Rebekah Hargraves
READ: Isaiah 53:4-5, 1 Peter 2:24, John 20:26-28
After our first baby was born, I was so thankful for the no-sex-for-6-weeks rule. Not because I didn’t enjoy intimacy with my husband or because there was something wrong in our sex life. It was because I didn’t want him to see my new body. I didn’t want him to see how my belly sagged now or how I looked as if I were still pregnant. I didn’t want him to see all the stretch marks and the changes brought about by my pregnancy with our daughter.
It wasn’t until I finally admitted to him my struggles of wanting to hide my body (admittedly, I should have just been open with him from the start!) that I began to find healing in my thinking and began to view my body not as having been ruined, but as being proof of my having brought new life into this world. As I shared with my husband the disdainful thoughts I had been having towards my postpartum body, he gently hushed me and began to share with me his thoughts about it - how he viewed my stretch marks as badges of honor, proof that I had been used of God to bring new life into this world. He didn’t disdain my new body. He loved it.
He taught me that my scars were signs of new life. And you know what? Someone else has scars, too, that are also signs of new life. First Peter 2:24 says, “He himself bore our sins in his body on the tree; so that, having died to sins, we might live for righteousness. By his wounds you have been healed.” The second part of that verse refers back to Isaiah 53:4-5, which also speaks to the Messiah’s wounds. In John 20:26-28, we read that it was Christ’s very scars which led Thomas to believe in the existence of the Risen Christ.
You see, scars such as those stretch marks many of us mamas wear daily are not something to disdain. They are something to remind us of the love and life we poured into our babies. But even more importantly than that, when we daily see our stretch marks in the mirror, we can view them as being tangible reminders for us - every single day! - of the extent to which Christ was willing to go in order to show us the reality of His love. Just as our scars are proof of love, so are His.
So, dear mama, the next time you are tempted to feel disgusted towards those stretch marks? Don’t. Instead, allow them to point you to the good news of the gospel, and lookup. Fix your eyes on Him, and remember just how much He loves you.
Scripture to Meditate:
“He himself bore our sins in his body on the tree; so that, having died to sins, we might live for righteousness. By his wounds you have been healed.” ~1 Peter 2:24
1. Do you struggle with postpartum body image? How can remembering the truths and implications of the gospel help heal you and free you from those struggles?
2. Are there any body image issues standing between you and your desire to be intimate with your husband? What can you do to be open and honest with your husband and seek healing in this area?
3. How do you imagine God feels when He hears us lamenting the state of our postpartum bodies?
Lord, thank You that my body is not actually ruined, even though I sometimes think it is. Thank You that it accomplished something amazing that you designed it to be able to do - bring new life into this world. Help me to remember what a blessing that is. Free me from debilitating body image issues, and help me to view my scars in light of Yours. Thank You that You were willing to have Your body broken for me. I love you, Lord. In Jesus’ name, Amen.