Friday, 27 March 2009

Flesh versus Spirit...

I bought and watched a Louie Giglio DVD on earlier in the week called "Alive". It's a two part DVD about how our life is a miracle. Talk 1 is titled "Fearfully and Wonderfully Made" and Talk 2 is titled "New Life. New Genes". Here is the blurb on the DVD -

"Your life is a miracle. From the smallest molecule to the most complex sytems in the human body, every facet of who you are has been created with miraculous detail. And running throughout each of the trillion cells in your body is a code that speaks of an incredible truth - that you are fearfully and wonderfully made, formed and ordained by the very hand of God.

But no matter how miraculous the detail of our physical bodies may be, they are ultimately (if not quickly) breaking down - a stunning reality considering that within our flesh resides an eternal soul. What matters most in life is not how good or how bad we may think we are in our quest to reach heaven, but whether or not our souls have come to unending life through Jesus Christ. In Alive! We’ll look through the microscope to explore the complexities God has intricately created within, and look to the Cross to discover the life that He offers for our souls...a spiritual birth that far surpasses everything else in this world."

I find Louie Giglio's DVDs to be amazing, and so full of encouragement that I almost burst from excitement and amazement from the greatness of God after watching them. I think I love the DVDs because they give an insight into the fact, as Louie likes to remind us in them, that we are so incredibly small in the scheme of things.

Louie talks about how while our bodies are breaking down our spiritual life is being renewed daily. I find comfort in that, and in keeping with this week's Yes to God Tuesday post on being fearful, I am focussing on that fact to stop me from succumbing to worldly opinions and thoughts. What I mean by that is that I making sure that I do not fall into the trap of worrying about the world and its temptations so that I can focus on my spiritual self and ultimately my eternal destination.

Flesh versus Spirit. It surrounds us every day. The human body being used as a means to coerce, tempt, betray, confuse, ridicule and trap us into a wrong way of thinking. Even though I'm told I do OK in the body image stakes, I still suffer from a lack of self-esteem from it. That is a silly way of thinking being that I am made in the image of God, but this is an important lesson for me to learn regardless. It doesn't matter if I have a cellulite free body, it doesn't matter if I (like I recently spotted in cyberspace) drape myself over a motorbike scantily dressed, it all doesn't matter ultimately as this human body I live in is only temporary. Once I get to heaven, zap, it's gone!

It's very difficult as women in this society to feel confident about ourselves, and our make up (no, not the shop bought stuff), when other women parade themselves around scantily dressed, spending fortunes on the so called ‘perfect’ body, and using their bodies to attract attention to be ‘better’ than the rest of us. The first online Bible study I did on "Behind Those Eyes" by Lisa Whittle discussed this issue and talked about a female college student, male college students and sprinklers. Yes, you can guess the rest from just those three components! God didn't intend for us to use our bodies for our own purposes, or to seek gratification from others. Our bodies are merely a shell in which our spirit, and our soul, resides while we are here on this earth. Our bodies are to be used to house our eternal self until we reach heaven. Our bodies are ultimately to be used for the purpose in which God intended, not how we see fit.

When I really stop and think that I am created in the image of God, it's quite a startling thought. Everything about my being is placed exactly where it needs to be for it to function correctly. And like Louie talks about in his DVD, if one thing is out of place then it affects the rest of the body.
I find it very off putting when I see images of women who are so fake and artificial that it's scary. I also find it very off putting when I see images of women who use their 'perfect' body to belittle other women who are not the same. The old saying of "beauty is only skin deep" is certainly true, as it doesn't matter what we look like on the outside, it's what's in our heart and soul that matter.

I pray that I will not feel insecure or envious of these women who parade themselves around like articles for sale. I also pray that I will remember the foundation of my faith and that I am God's Girl, created in His image, loved unconditionally by Him, and that those things are all that matter ultimately. If women choose to flaunt themselves, or direct their attention towards my special someone via these means, then that is their choice and I am not to feel lessened by that. God knows the content of our hearts and I am to trust in Him.

So God created man in his own image, in the image of God created he him; male and female created he them. Genesis 1:27 (KJV)

Dear Lord, thank you for creating me in your image. That is something to aspire to. That is something to be thankful for. I pray you bless me with the peace I yearn for in this area of my life. I thank you for sustaining me with your love, and loving me unconditionally. In Jesus Name, Amen.


  1. Hi Paula,

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  2. I love listening to Louie Giglio.

    Thanks for sharing this insight!

  3. This was a great and informative post. I'm not familiar with Louie G. but will have to check into him. Thanks for sharing dear sister and have a wonderful weekend.

  4. Paula,
    This is a great post. I too have fallen at times into the trap of using my body to attract male attention (particularly in college... and strangely after I became a believer... hmmm, who was working there, I wonder?!).
    Even now I struggle with it. I mean, I am a stay at home mom. I get up with the kids, and don't get to rest unless they do, and don't always trust them long enough to even shower unless Dave is home. I always feel like I look gross, and when I really depressed, before I ever did counseling, food was one of my ways of "medicating" myself. Temporarily feeling good from eating... eating way too much, way too often.
    In the last 2 years I have watched what I ate, for the most part, and tried to exercise more. I ended up dropping 30 lbs, but even that is a trap. Because it is so easy to keep aspiring to a number on the scale... then look in the mirror and not see any changes, and keep working on the dieting, until it is way unhealthy.
    Either way is a trap by the enemy to keep us from being satisfied with the way God created us... eating too much because we have pain or don't like who we are, so we drown it in food; or not eating enough cause we don't like the way we look or our body type. It is incredibly hard to find a healthy balance.
    I love Louie Giglio's stuff. I have heard bits and pieces of his stuff on line, and have really been inspired.

    Thank you so much for your thoughts here. I know for sure that I am not the only one who struggles with this stuff. How we look does not define who we are. Only God can do that! And He has. He has called us His children in His lavish love, and that is what we are!

    Love you,