My Faith and My Weight Loss

This post is hard to write…but I’m doing it anyway.
I am overweight.  I have been for what feels like most of my life.  Now, I haven’t always been really overweight…but I got there easily during college and grad school.  I was the big “O” word (obese for those of you without weight problems).  I’m not anymore.  Now I’m just plain overweight. πŸ™‚
I never thought twice about my weight and my faith until the last year or so.  I liked food.  I didn’t really love working out.  I never thought much about it. I read Made to Crave by Lysa Terkuerst and it opened my eyes to the reasons why I was turning to food, instead of turning to God. I started my healthy living journey with that in mind.  That I wanted to honor God with my health and with my body.  I wanted to turn to Him when I was stressed, sad, angry, or happy…not to food.  I wanted to exercise self-control and control the desires of my flesh (like the desire to eat my weight in chocolate after a bad day).
It hasn’t been easy.  I wish I could say that I prayed for willpower, and was able to eat salads for the rest of my life, and say “Amen” and be at goal weight.
But it doesn’t work like that.  Like any sin (and I think my unhealthy lifestyle was sinful), I have to deal with the consequences.  That includes working my butt off to lose this weight. This includes having hard days when the scale doesn’t show the payoff of my hard work.  That includes working so hard in Boot Camp I want to cry, but praying for strength to finish.
I have mentioned to some people that I feel led by God to get healthier.  This doesn’t mean I feel led by God to be skinny…but I want to get my body as healthy as I can.  I feel like God is calling me to that.  Some people think I’m crazy.  They say “My pastor is overweight, and he still loves Jesus.  Loosen up a bit!”  Well…that doesn’t work for me.  Yes, you can be overweight and love Jesus.  You can be obese and love Him back.  Thankfully, our love for God (and His love for us) doesn’t depend on that.
But I do think God calls us each to work on the sins in our lives, and to be more like Him.  And this is mine.  Mine just happens to be very outward.  You can see the fruits of this journey when I buy smaller pants.
I am reading “Reshaping it All” by Candace Cameron Bure.  I’m LOVING this book for a Christian perspective on getting healthy.  This is an excerpt from her book:
Perhaps you are a size 16.  You are basically happy with yourself, but you long to be a few sizes smaller. You might even feel that shedding a few pounds might give you more energy, add to your health, and give your figure a more feminine appearance. You may even dream of the day when you finally walk into a mall, and the styles that you like fit you well. On the other hand, you may ask yourself, β€œIs it really God’s will, or is it my own? Does God care if I’m a size 16 or 6? Does God care if I lose weight?”
Let me say this first, God loves you just the shape you are. And there isn’t a number on the scale that could ever change that. Did you know how enthralled He is with your beauty? How He knows the number of hairs on your head? And how He treasures every minute you spend quiet in His presence? Yes. He loves you just as you are. Regardless of your size. And there is nothing average about you or His love. 
But let me also say that God designed the female body in a beautiful form – curvaceous, soft and feminine. He understands the desire we have to walk across the mall, to slip into smaller size pants, to like the reflection we see, and to hold a form of beauty both inside and out. After all, he created all things beautiful – from the smallest detail of a flower to the vastness of a midnight sky.  And while he loves us, he has given us the opportunity to improve our quality of life. But ultimately, you will have to make that choice. No one can make it for you. You will have to weigh the cost and make that decision. Is it God’s desire that I care for my body? Since it’s the temple of the Holy Spirit, I have to say yes. Many health concerns are out of our hands, but in many cases, a healthy body is a reflection of an inner body that has balance, and one that has exercised self control. 
That’s where I am.  I’m choosing to improve my health and my life, because I feel called to do so.
And that’s where my faith and my weight loss collide. This has been the verse of this journey for me.  Proverbs 3:7-8.  
I know that following God on this path will bring healthy to my body, nourishment to my bones, and peace to my spirit.  That’s where I am right now.

Now, I know God isn’t calling everyone to this.  I don’t think every overweight Christian is having the same call as me.  But, if you feel like something other than your desire to fit into smaller jeans is urging you…do some praying.  It just might be from the Lord.

*I’m editing this to include my before to show you how far the Lord has brought me on this journey.*

Thanks for letting me share my heart.


Comments

  1. For a second there I was wondering if I should just copy and paste your post for my blog post for the day. . . but since we are talking about sin and The Lord I thought I had better not steal your post. I am so with you. I couldnt be anymore with you if I was sitting in your lap! And well. . . you dont want that because I too am overweight (except you dont really appear to be overweight to me. . .but I understand).

    Anyways, love the post. I know without a doubt our Lord cares about when the birds chirp and he also cares about how I feel and my health. I prayed many a’ prayers over these 30 lbs I have lost. . .and I continue to pray about the 10 I have put back on!
    Love you girl!

    • Girl…come sit in my lap anytime! I’m so glad to know that I’m not the only one struggling with this…fighting this “demon” in my life. I know my God is greater, and that we can do this! Here’s to health (for HIS glory!)

      Love YOU girl!

  2. Love this! I read made to crave too and it is wonderful! Thank you for beIng so transparent!

  3. Britt, I LOVE your honesty and the way you are so transparent and share your heart! I could really take a lesson from you on this!

    I was reading in 1 Corinthians 6 this morning during my quiet time and when I saw the words “Remember that your bodies are created with the same dignity as the Master’s body”… I knew the Lord wanted me to see it. It’s a struggle everyday (where food/exercise is concerned), but I know that WITH GOD… we can do and be what He has called us to be and fulfill his purpose for our life.

    The journey is hard work, but with HIM you are doing it… and I will too! Love ya friend! I am proud of you for taking your health seriously and for all the hard work you pour into your body! And when we do it for HIM, I believe He honors that!

  4. Thanks for the honesty and the motivation you’ve given me to eat well and lose the baby weight. You are an inspiration!

  5. This is a beautiful post. I have felt silly in the past thinking about my feelings that God wants me to work on my health and how I treat my body, but I know I am not the only one. Thank you so much for sharing!

    • Thank you, Stephanie. I felt silly at first (and still do at times…it is such an abstract thing to feel like you are called to do). Keep seeking God and He will show you how to face this journey!

  6. Britt… I loved this post and it was such a good reminder to read πŸ™‚ xoxo

  7. This post is so great!! I feel so much like you! I know God loves me just how I am, but he also wants me to be wise and eat healthier and work out! Thank you for sharing your heart ans encourging me to do better in this area! You look great girl!!

  8. This post is so great!! I feel so much like you! I know God loves me just how I am, but he also wants me to be wise and eat healthier and work out! Thank you for sharing your heart ans encourging me to do better in this area! You look great girl!!

  9. Love your spirit about all of this Brittney! I can’t help but believe that being healthy is an intricate part of our spiritual journey too. You are working so hard and the Lord will bless you! Thanks for being so open and honest πŸ™‚

    • Thanks Leanne! I can see and feel the blessings (but some days wish they came in the form of a lower number on the scale, can I get an Amen? haha). Thanks for your support!

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