On a scale of 1-10 how strong is your desire to be in excellent health?
Now on a scale of 1-10, how committed are you to taking the actions to get in shape?
For many of us, our desire-commitment ratio might look like this, 10:5, 10:6 or if we are really honest, 10:2. Unfortunately, when your desire and your commitment levels are in conflict, it’s your commitment level that will invariable determine your results. Low commitment = poor results.
There’s a powerful story in the bible that can teach us about commitment and how I believe God want us to be in this area of our lives. It’s the story of the Widow’s mite in Mark 12:41-44.
“Jesus sat down opposite the place where the offerings were put and watched the crowd putting their money into the temple treasury. Many rich people threw in large amounts. But a poor widow came and put in two very small copper coins, worth only a few cents.
Calling his disciples to him, Jesus said, “Truly I tell you, this poor widow has put more into the treasury than all the others. They all gave out of their wealth; but she, out of her poverty, put in everything—all she had to live on.””
I believe this passage reminds us that God looks at the condition of our heart rather than the amount of the offering. And regardless of whether we’re talking about our offerings, our relationships or our health, I believe that only God looks at our motives and intentions. Whether it’s 10 pounds, 100 pounds or 300 pounds we want to release, God want us to trust HIM to meet ALL our needs just like the widow trusted by giving ALL she had. There was no plan B for her and there was no opportunity to take matters into her own hands if things did not work out as she hoped. She trusted God 100%! And that is my desire…to give my heart, my treasures and all my trust to God in all areas of my life— including the daily management of my health.
We know that Jesus was pleased with her offering and we can believe that He will also be pleased with us when we submit all we have to Him also.
Here are 3 factors to consider that can help to strengthen our commitment:
1. Be willing to change the way you think
When you think about exercise and healthy eating, what is your predominant thought? Too hard? Too painful? It’s deprivation? No time? The fact of the matter is, that the manner in which you portray healthy habits in your mind, will determine your level of success or failure. If you envision healthy habits as painful, you won’t stick with them very long. If you envision them as a long term blessing in your life, you will likely stick with them, even when the going gets tough.
We have well-established thought patterns that are as comforting to us as our favourite sweater or blanket. The trouble with these comfortable thoughts is that they can makes us complacent and downright lazy. For example, if you perceive exercise as too hard, and too painful, you’ll likely find every excuse to not do it.
“Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind.” ~Romans 12:2
Success will require that you let go of some of the feelings, beliefs, and emotions you associate with exercise, your health, your body, and even food. Be open to a new way of thinking about all these factors. If you really want to be healthier, get ready to let go of your old way of exercising, eating, thinking, and even your beliefs about what success should look like. Once you are open to change, you will be pleasantly surprised at how the Holy Sprit shows up in your life.
2. Be honest with yourself
Our human nature is to overestimate our accomplishments and underestimate our shortcomings. However, it is critical that you tell yourself the truth, even if it’s painful. If you’re lazy, call it for what it is. If you procrastinate, call it for what it is. If you’re greedy or gluttonous, call it for what it is. Until we admit the areas where we struggle, we can’t begin to correct them.
“Then you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.” ~John 8:32, NIV
Or maybe we’re not being honest with others. Our pride can often keep us from reaching out for help and support so other’s might not even know what’s really going on with us. We want people to think that we’ve got it all together, while we’re slowly dying on the inside.
Until you’re able to get real with what your challenges and struggles are, you will continue to frustrate yourself. It’s time to get real about what you’re going through. Trust that the Holy Spirt is more than capable to bring you through it.
3. Be willing to trust the process regardless of what it looks like and how long it takes
Have you ever noticed what the gyms look like in April versus January? Our tendency is to quit when results don’t come fast enough or when the excitement or novelty wears off. My personality to is such that I love the challenge of something new but can quickly get bored so I’m learning how to guard against that. Don’t quit just before your breakthrough; breakthroughs come to those who are willing to endure until they reach their goal.
“but the one who stands firm to the end will be saved.” ~Matt. 24:13 NIV
Releasing weight is rarely a ‘2-pound-per-week’, steady progressive decrease as we think (and are often told). Rather, it’s sometimes like a cha-cha dance with 2-steps forward and 1 step back. There will be times when the weight seems to melt off and other times where you’ve plateaued and it feels like you will never reach your goal. There will be tragedy and triumphs, tests and testimonies, set-backs and successes, mountains and valleys. Regardless of where you are in the journey, trust the process and more importantly, trust God because He is in control of the processes.
For today, reflect on areas of your health where you are not committed. Place your trust in God in ask Him to guide to towards a lifestyle of trust and submission. By the grace of God, I pray that your commitment will surpass your desire to live in excellent health.
Love and Blessings,