Finally some progress!! I lost two pounds, and it’s very encouraging. It’s just what I needed to stick with this lifestyle change. After all, it’s hard to stick with something if it doesn’t appear to be doing any better than what you were doing before.
I thought I’d take a moment to ponder exactly why I am making this lifestyle change. Why go through it? Why spend the extra time, the extra planning, the extra money, the extra work? Why discipline myself to a set guideline of calories and fat, of fiber and vitamins and minerals, of lean meats, fruits, veggies and whole grains? Why encourage my children to eat things that are good for them even when they whine and complain, going over and over about why certain vitamins are necessary for healthy bones and teeth and muscles? It wouldn’t all be worth it if there wasn’t something better waiting at the end, would it?
Of course the first and obvious benefit is that we’ll all be healthier. If we eat food that is good for our body and get enough exercise or activity we’ll have more energy and feel better, and we’ll BE healthier on the inside. Also, we’ll avoid obesity and high blood pressure and heart disease all the other health and weight related issues.
More than that though, I think we’ll be taking care of our bodies the way God wants us to. The bible speaks out frequently against sloth and laziness, and also gluttony as well. It also tells us that everything we have (even our bodies and our health) ultimately belongs to God (Isa. 44:24-25; Psalm 24) and that we are supposed to be good stewards of what He has given us (Matt. 25.) So I don’t think it’s a stretch to say that God does not want me to binge on food that is bad for me, or spend every free moment laying on the couch watching tv. Of course, there are more reasons than just health for not laying on the couch and watching tv all day long. But that’s another post. 🙂
On the other hand, I don’t think we are supposed to obsess with our weight and how many minutes we have exercised and how many calories we are eating. Anything we dwell on more than God and our relationship with God becomes an idol to steal away our attention from what matters most. Certainly there must be a balance. And that is my goal. While I am menu planning, I want to be thinking about making good choices that will be healthy for our bodies and affordable for our budget so that I can honor God with both of those things. While I am grocery shopping I want to avoid the temptations of the sweets and the treats. While I am preparing and eating our meals, I want to pay attention to portions and moderation. And lastly, when I stand on the scale, I want to keep the perspective of accountability and verification that what I am doing is right, while not focusing too much on that magic number that I think I need to be when this is all over. During the rest of my day, I want to focus on other ways to glorify God and not make this the end all and be all of my day.
Also, having said all of this, I come all the way around to something that I have learned and forgotten and remembered and forgotten again and am now reminding myself of again, hopefully one last time: It is okay to pray about resisting temptations, staying accountable with healthy eating and exercising, and losing weight!
I’m not advocating that you pray and ask God to make you the most beautiful women in the whole world, ever. Clearly that kind of prayer reveals an underlying wrong motivation.
On the other hand, if your desire is to please God, then why not go ahead and ask God to help you accomplish it?! I don’t know why this is hard for me to remember. I guess it feels wrong to ask God to help me lose weight, vain almost. But hey, pray about that, too! “God, don’t let me get caught up in vanity. Keep me grounded in truth!” God is able and faithful to come to our aid when we call on Him, in any circumstance.
So then, this week I continue on my journey towards a healthier me and a lifestyle change that will last longer than this new year’s resolution – walking down a path to pleasing God with my Lord by my side. This week, in addition to sticking to good habits is also about sticking to good thinking. After all, bad thinking is also unhealthy, too. 😉