This week something popped up on Facebook. I don’t know who the original poster was or even remember who shared the post but I clicked and got sucked into the post – and the comments. Always the comments…
The post was titled “Just Show Up”and was about a mom who hated her body but put on a swimsuit so she could be with her kids. The gist of the post was about not worrying about our physical appearance because the kids don’t care. They just want us to be there for them.
The gal’s post wasn’t what drew me in. I’ve seen posts like that before. I’ve had that discussion in my own head. What compelled me were the comments. Hundreds of people who didn’t even know the author of the post shared pictures of themselves in swimsuits with their children. They were posting proof of how they showed up. To be honest, I thought to myself maybe they shouldn’t be posting those pics. To be honest.
But as I continued to read the comments and see the moms with cellulite, chubby thighs, and big bellies, I was impressed.
I can remember the ONE time I saw my grandmother in her bathing suit. ONE time! She wasn’t comfortable in her suit. Maybe it was because one of her grandkids said something about her “bumpy” legs. I remember the look on her face and never saw her in a suit again. When we were at my grandparents’ ranch, the aunts, uncles, cousins and my grandfather swam every day. But my grandmother never went to the lake with us. Maybe there was another reason she didn’t go, but in my 6-year-old mind it was because she was embarrassed by how she looked in a swimsuit. I also never saw her in shorts and, in Texas, it’s too dang hot to go outside in the summer wearing pants.
My other grandmother went to the pool with me when I visited her. She did get in her swimsuit and take me to the pool but she complained the entire time about her “big, fat belly.”
Great messages sent to a young girl who inherited genes from both of those women, right? Nope!
I have the same bumpy legs and my belly is bigger than I want it to be but I have always tried to show up for my girls. When we had a boat, I refused to stay behind at the lake house. I wanted to be in the boat making memories even if I wasn’t a “10” in my swimsuit – or even a “4.”
I spent the summer days with my girls at the neighborhood pool – in a swimsuit, in the water. We had Tuesday Beach Days with our group of friends. We had season passes to the water park. More bumpy leg showing swimsuit days.
Oh, the memories! Yes, I showed up to make memories with my girls.
And I’m showing up for my grand-girls now. My legs are bumpier and my belly might be bigger but my grand-girl doesn’t seem to care. What she cares about is jumping in the pool and splashing me.
I’m showing up.
Jesus wants us to show up for Him. Show up by reading His Word, talking to Him, being around His people. He doesn’t care if we have it all together and our lives look amazing. He is the Master at taking our messy lives and creating a new thing. He welcomes our bumpy, often bruised, bodies. He just wants to spend time with us.
For we are God’s handiwork, created in Christ Jesus to do good works,
which God prepared in advance for us to do. Ephesians 2:10
I often feel like I should have it all together to be worthy of Jesus but it’s really the opposite. He is worthy so I don’t have to be anything except available. Leaning on Jesus in the messy, hard places are the times I have my biggest growth and breakthroughs.
We don’t have to have it all together and look perfect. Just show up!
Come near to God and he will come near to you. James 4:8
What about you? Do you feel like you like need to have your life looking like a “10” before you can get close to God?
Brenda Thompson says
This post hit home for me, because I just came back from Spain where prior to going to felt self conscious on how I looked. Rolls and fat thighs. The exchange student I was visiting told me to know worry about that because women in Spain didn’t worry about that. When we went to the beach I saw everything. Nudity, which he had warned me about. Grandma’s in bikinis, etc. I decided I needed to not think how I looked to just enjoy my time with him and his family. The sad thing young girls and women are bombarded from a young age that you need to look at a certain way to be loved or accepted. I hate the devil’s lie he has perpetrated on women about our bodies. I’m determined I’m going to love myself as I am. Yes I need to lose weight, etc., but I am made in God’s image and He loves me despite weight, etc. So, I want to tell all young ladies and women You are loved by God no matter what size you are!! Don’t listen to the world’s idea of “perfection” He already sees you perfect and loves you very much.
Shelly D Templin says
I agree! We need to remember the Lord loves us and wants to be in relationship with us.
some one told me about a ‘ministry of presence”–just showing up.
Applies to others and our relationship with our Lord.
Shelly D Templin says
I love that! Amen!