what do you really see?
I put together a little photo collage to illustrate the point that while pictures are worth a thousand words, that's really only true if your eyes can see more than what's on the surface.
The photo in the upper left corner is me from 2008. That was the heaviest I've ever been without being pregnant. About 40 pounds ago. I might appear happy to you, perhaps because my sister was getting married. Now take a look at the photo in the middle of me holding my nephew from 4 years ago. I'm smiling, right? I've lost a lot of weight since that first photo. Happy, right? Or do you see what's behind the smile? I bet you don't unless you saw me in the months preceding it. You don't see the despair, the emptiness, the sadness & pain behind that smile. You might not see me about to hit rock bottom in that photo. Empty on the inside spiritually, underweight, existing on little sleep and a lot of wine. Well on my way into an abyss of darkness.
Now take a look at the other photos. They're from this year. What's different about these? I'm not empty anymore. I'm not alone. I'm actually healthy. I walk with God's saving grace. If not for that, I'd be a divorced alcoholic, maybe with an eating disorder, or worse. Some of the things that created despair in me previously are still in my life but they don't suffocate me anymore. The emptiness is gone. Replaced with a revived marriage and a Savior who never gives up on me. Healing every day on the inside, and my journey is now a fuller one since I decided to heal on the outside, too. So what you see in this year's photos is truth. Jesus is working on my insides and Beachbody is working on my outsides. It's a truth for which I am immensely grateful. Spiritual strength training on the inside and physical strength training on the outside. My strength comes from Him first, and then it comes from working to become stronger and fitter. It's a journey that I will be taking until He gathers me home. If any of you want to take this journey with me, please reach out to me and we'll do this together! Strength and courage in numbers!