This morning I was on the phone with Andre, married 35 years to his bride Lisa. They have just begun their personal fitness journey together where I am their coach, and he remarked about how much it meant to him that Lisa is putting this renewed energy into her physical appearance: “After 35 years, you’ve been through a lot together. I make it a point to compliment her every time she completes a workout. I know it’s hard to do, but I see a difference in all of her work and I am all for her!”
This conversation with Andre inspired me to get bold…bolder than usual. My blog is a special place where I am overjoyed to share things that I’m learning or teaching, and sometimes it’s useful for thoughtful reflection. Based on this foundation, I feel safe to talk with you about something that may be as sensitive to you as it is to me: our bodies, how our men view them, and our responsibilities to honor our men with them.
First, most of us know that men are visual by nature – and this is a gift, a blessing from God, not a curse! Men were created to view, be attracted to, and enjoy beauty. Women are a key part of that beauty. We are women. ‘Nuff said.
Second, this is wrong: It only matters what’s on the inside, my man loves me for me, so big or small, my size doesn’t matter.
Yes, your man and my man love us no matter what, but our size and appearance DOES matter to them! I’ve heard many women say this, most of them Christian wives with every intention of serving their husbands.
“But it (our appearance) does matter!” Shares Shaunti Feldhahn, author of For Women Only, ”…and when we seem to be willfully ignoring the truth (that our appearance does matter), our men – even godly men who are devoted to us – end up feeling disregarded, disrespected, and hurt.”
Personally, I am deeply convicted to make sure I don’t take advantage of my husband’s love by believing that my body size and shape doesn’t matter…because now I see this as a total excuse for being lax and lazy.
One man shared with his wife: “When you take care of yourself, I feel like you care about me.”
You are probably just like me, sister, where one of our main goals as wife is to make sure our husband knows how deeply we care for him, and how much we want him to be happy with his decision to spend his life with us.
“Our men desperately want us to know but feel absolutely unable to tell us: the effort you put into your appearance is extremely high on his priority list.” Shaunti explains. In fact, 83% of men agree with her on that (per survey results listed above)! So lets just assume that your man is in that majority along with mine!
Andy, my husband of 7 years, has said numerous times: “I really like how hard you work to keep me physically attracted to you.”
And I certainly hope he is! I want my husband to look at me all the days of his life and smile. I vow to be constantly moving towards becoming a better woman spiritually, mentally, and physically. As Shaunti said, “It is important!”
Friends, I am completely convinced that, in order to please our men, we have to get in and keep our physical shape at a high level. This does not mean to make exercise an idol, or to go in crash diets or become unhealthily thin. It is about honoring your man and “dealing with weight, fitness, and appearance issues that we can healthfully do something about.” As Shaunti directs in her book.
A woman who started her weight loss journey just this morning, put it this way: “Katy, let me give it to you straight: I want to make the most of all that my body is capable of – God gave it to me, and I know there is a higher calling within my reach and I’m going to get there!”
Would you agree with her? Floored, I certainly did!
Here’s my challenge to you: if after reading this post, you feel the urging in your spirit to step to a higher place with your physical fitness, please take action and do something about it!
There are a variety of resources available to women on a budget, women short on time, and women with any other challenge at Beachbody. It is the absolute best set of tools I’ve ever seen. I’ve been using this company’s fitness and nutrition programs myself for so many years…friend,physical fitness is simple, and success begins with a willing heart and a bold decision to just go for it!
You’ve got to start today. I remember the day I got my act together! August 2009, I went out on a limb and bought P90X - and thank God I did! It was the exact plan I needed, and my fitness has been on point ever since, to which I am continually thankful. It just took me putting all my challenges aside, putting my husband’s needs above my lazy tenancies, and just going for it!
I pray that you go for it today!
And if you do choose to, do it with me. You can begin here. Either way, I’ll be cheering for YOU sister!
Need some fitness inspiration? Visit our Facebook fellowship group where women are starting their own journeys every day!
Shaunti’s research inspired me to write my thoughts about her points where you can find them in full detail in chapter nine, which is titled “the truth about taking care of yourself: why what’s in the outside matters to him on the inside.”