To mark International Women’s Day, the award-winning Loose Women Body Stories campaign is back, and it’s back with a bang.

With a focus on ‘Celebrating Every Body’, it puts older women, disabled women, and women from ethnic minorities in the spotlight. It’s empowering. It’s relatable. It’s necessary.

How do you see your body? How do you feel about your body? How do you behave towards your body? 

In a recent survey, 75% of women said they avoid mirrors because of negative body image, and 58% that they have no body confidence. Whether we wish our thighs were smaller or our skin was smoother, we all have our insecurities. 

This article is one in a series (Culture & Discipleship) from the the London Institute of Contemporary Christianity.

Body positivity is a constant battle for me. I find myself thinking that, without the scars, sensors, and protruding joints that are part and parcel of my cocktail of chronic health conditions, I’d look and feel so much more beautiful. It’s a challenge not to compare myself to others or fantasise about having that ‘perfect’ magazine-worthy body. 

When Lila Moss, a fellow diabetic, rocked her glucose monitoring device on the red carpet as if it was a high-end accessory to her Burberry gown, I was filled with a new confidence. I realised I didn’t need to wear long-sleeved tops and big scarves to hide these parts of my body – because they’re part of my beauty. That’s why this new campaign has really struck a chord with me, and why I feel so strongly that bodies of all shapes, sizes, colours, and types should be celebrated as beautiful in the media. 

But it’s easy to point the finger at (social) media. If I’m honest, I know that my dissatisfaction is rooted in a deep misunderstanding of how God sees my body. Our bodies are beautiful in God’s eyes because he crafted us to reflect his character and to equip us to live with and for him, right where we are (Genesis 1:27–28). What’s more, the individuality of my appearance is pleasing to him – it’s an expression of his creativity. 

So, let’s work together to mould culture by speaking out against the harmful narratives that surround body image – participating in the #MyBodyMyStory campaign or challenging friends who, perhaps unknowingly, perpetuate narrow concepts of beauty. And let’s be kind, gentle, and patient as we walk alongside colleagues or siblings who battle with body dysmorphia – all because every body is beautiful in the eyes of the Lord God.  

Sophie Sanders
Marketing & Communications Executive, LICC

This article is one in a series (Culture & Discipleship) from the the London Institute of Contemporary Christianity.

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