Last week my little dog and I were walking, as we do every morning, when we noticed a man laboring on his morning run across the street. He was quite overweight and our walk kept pace with his run but God bless him literally, that man didn’t give up! I silently cheered him on as he rounded the curve and headed off in another direction. I prayed that other direction lead to a health improvement.
This morning we saw him again, trudging away. Perhaps eventually, I can get him to wave but he seemed focused on his breathing and didn’t glance over at us at all. Perhaps he was embarrassed, who knows? It’s tough to start anything new and not feel self-conscious.
Yes sometimes embarrassment stops us from accomplishing something before we even get started! Have you ever tried to witness to someone? Scary! At first you might be self-conscious, but as Jesus infuses your life, it will become second nature to discuss Biblical issues. No one starts off being an evangelist like Billy Graham. Truth be told, even Billy Graham didn’t start off being Billy Graham. He was petrified during his first sermon! It becomes easier as the Holy Spirit becomes your power!
No one really starts off in life obese either. But along life’s road we might gain a few pounds. Then it’s ten and eventually much more. If we immediately learn to nip the first five pounds in the bud, it sure is easier to manage that weight gain. So let the Holy Spirit work within and be inspired by the Apostle Paul’s words:
“Instead, I discipline my body and bring it under strict control, so that after preaching to others, I myself will not be disqualified.” ( 1 Corinthians 9:27)
A patient once protested, “How would you know how I feel? You’ve never had a weight problem in your life!” Mmm, assumptions. Little did they know I had and gain weight very easily. But so what? My job wasn’t a “can you top this” position. It wouldn’t make any difference – she couldn’t compare herself to anyone else, including me. Besides, would anyone feel any better knowing I was dying of cancer if they were dying of heart disease? No! Pursuing health is based on individual physiology.
For me, I’ve learned to keep my weight within a range. I seldom weigh myself, rather I know how my clothes fit. If they are tighter, I instantly take action to drink water, eat less and exercise more. Voila’! In no time I am back at my normal healthy weight, because I discipline my body into submission.
We had a super-duper exercise bike in our living room. (Bless my sweet hubby.) I mean, I thought I was in shape. I used to play tennis for hours, run five miles a day, play racquetball, walk the golf course carrying clubs . . . so I thought. “piece of cake.” Wrong. My first experience riding that bike, I was in agony within three minutes! It would have been so easy to quit, but being stubborn, I refused! Soon I was riding six minutes, than ten, then twenty . . . then it was faster or intervals or anything to make it interesting. Watching television while on it made the time wiz by. Don’t. Ever. Give. Up!
Everyone has to start somewhere! That jogger’s tenacity was an inspiration to me and should be to all. I hope I see him daily for I am cheering alongside him.
“I press on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus.” (Philippians 3:14)