Previous Challenge Entry (Level 1 – Beginner)
Topic: Persuasion (not about the book) (09/01/11)
TITLE: The Friendly Persuasion
By Anna Moody
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The commercial breaks endorsed the thinking of our minds that our bodies needed fixing no matter what shape they were in. We are prey to these paid persuasions. We are told we are overweight and too sedentary. The silver in our hair should be covered up instead of being celebrated as a reflection of our maturity. The wrinkles in our complexion are unattractive and creams, injections and surgeries promise to remove these lines of integrity and life experiences. Our tummies need tucked; our boobs need lifted; the veins in our legs need stripped; our hearing wanes, our eyesight dims but there is a “fix” for everything. “What a mess!” - is what we are led to believe!
It seems no matter where we turn there is a product or procedure trying to persuade us that the body God created for us is unacceptable. Even our own minds possess that element of persuasion, telling us we are not quite good enough – we are less than perfect. At first it was women who were buying into these vane persuasions; just as it was in The Garden. Recently, however, men have also bought into this persuasion in the quest for youth.
It never occurs to any of us that all of the investments we make in our outward appearance also harm and abuse our internal spirits. Our thinking is confused and the line between right and wrong becomes blurred. God created a balance of inward and outward talents. Our acceptance of that balance and resistance to the temptation of persuasion keeps that balance of creation.
The Lord works in mysterious ways as does His adversary, the devil. The devil disguises his agenda and then appeals to the seed of sin he originally planted within each of us. He takes our weakest thoughts and adds vanity, and then subtle persuasion. This in turn distorts our vision of ourselves and our lives. We question God’s intent and begin to tear down that which God created. We attempt to recreate what God so meticulously created.
God entrusted to us the bodies and minds He individually created for each of us, He also gave us the responsibility of respecting and caring for His creation which includes our bodies and minds. God knew what He was doing when He created our appearances and mental abilities. He did not expect us to constantly misuse or try to change those elements of His creation. Genesis, in the story of creation, plainly tells us: “And God saw everything that He had made, and behold, it was very good.”
The devil also saw it was good and his ongoing jealously of God prompted him to begin his work to persuade us that what and who we are is unacceptable. He worms into our minds and creates criticism and doubt of all that God has done in each of us. Care, nurturing and respect of the bodies God created for us is God’s expectation. Destruction and abuse of these bodies is not what God envisioned – that was the devil’s work. From the very beginning, the devil has been enticing, persuading and making empty promises. We must never forget that the devil is alive and well. He continues his attempts to destroy God’s gift to us of mind and body. We need to be on guard to the devil’s “friendly persuasion” so God’s creation is not put at risk. Remember: God loves us just the way we are – just the way He created us.
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