This may not come as a shock to those who know me, or have seen a recent picture but I’m what some in the medical profession would call “fat.” I went to the doctor the other day and they wanted to update my weight, I think I annoyed the nurse as I emptied my pockets of everything including a lint ball. “Every ounce counts right?” I asked. She looked at me and with the eyes of a serial killer and responded, “It’s not going to make much of a difference.” She thinks she’s hilarious.
I have been overweight for some time and have really tried to “take care” of myself from time to time. I’ve been the gym…once and tried a few diets. I even had this entire plan to be fit before 30, never completed any of it.
Well this all has weighed heavy on my mind recently (pun very much intended) and it got me thinking how my choices and bad habits don’t only effect me. They are effecting my wife, kids, co-workers, my job and my ministry.
Paul writes in 1 Corinthians about how we should treat our bodies. While this verse comes out of a section talking about immorality I feel the heart of the message applies here.
Do you not know that your bodies are temples of the Holy Spirit, who is in you, whom you have received from God? You are not your own; you were bought at a price. Therefore honor God with your bodies. – 1 Corinthians 6:19-20
I am probably not delivering any grand revelation here when I say, working in the church is taxing on our bodies. With long hours and the stress that comes with the “production lifestyle,” we need to be taking care of ourselves. That doesn’t only mean weight, it’s a holistic approach that includes:
- Reducing Stress
- Getting plenty of sleep
- Eating right
- Drinking plenty of water
- Limiting the energy drinks
All these things play a role in helping us be at out best. Not to mention daily devotionals and quiet times to make sure our spirits are healthy too.
So this is all good and well but how do you do this when the rigors of Christmas and Easter come at you?
First, start doing them now, start today with small steps. In fact why not take a walk outside. Habits put into place now while it’s not crazy hectic will be easier to keep when the chaos starts.
Second, get a support group. Look for like-minded people on your volunteer teams. Put together a running group. At my last church we had a group that met every Saturday in the parking lot and went biking. Make it fun, maybe have a Tech Team olympics with activities like underwater patching and the mic stand javelin throw. I don’t know, get creative. Just don’t go it alone.
Finally, write your goals out. Create a vision, write it down, and set measurable milestones. (Read more here) Countless studies have been done that prove written goals have a better percentage of being accomplished than unwritten ones. So write it down and share it with your group.
I know this may sound funny coming from the fat man, but I am the most guilty of anyone of abusing the temple God has given me. I want to be here for my kids and to continue to help churches so I am doing something about it. God is not done with me yet and for me to fulfill the work He has planned, I need to be physically, mentally and spiritually fit.
Will you join me?