In the summer of 2009, I (Billy) was working night shift. Before the night got started, my co-workers and I would go somewhere for dinner. One of our favorite places was a buffet restaurant that served just about everything. I loved the buffet!
As soon as I paid for my meal I would hit the first station, plate in hand. I had a system down. I would never get salads or bread because, in my mind, those two items took up too much room. The buffet had selections of chicken, (fried and baked), pastas, roast beef, steaks and ham. Along with all the different sides, I didn’t want to waste time or room in my belly for salads (the greens that is), bread or desert.
I’d sit down, pray, and then kill it. Before I could finish up my last bites, I was eyeing the buffet to see what would be next on my second and third plate.
I had gained almost 100lbs with this bad habit of eating.
Let’s go back in time when I met my wife. I was in great shape. At this time in my life I was at the gym almost every day. If I couldn’t make it to the gym, I was at least running three to five miles. My weight was 205 pounds and I was pretty lean. My workout was routine and intense. All of this working out and being in shape hid one important negative factor for all who saw me from the outside; my intake of food was the same as it was in 2009.
Crazy isn’t it? The eating habits I had at 285+ pounds in 2009, were the same eating habits I had five years prior. Let’s not forget the alcohol problem added to the bad eating. I was a prime candidate for heart disease and stroke. I didn’t realize it then but my ‘inside’ was evolving into a potential deadly disaster.
As the years went by, I stopped working out and the eating habits took its toll on me and our marriage. My habit and eating brought about high blood pressure, and bad sleeping. I was snoring so much that I had to sleep in another room away from my wife on numerous occasions because I was keeping her awake at night. Because of this, I was prescribed to use a CPAP, in other words a sleep machine. Now how sexy is that to my wife?
It was at this point, I had to do something. I had to make the choice to change. Not to mention, that my father died instantly at the young age of 57 from a heart attack. I didn’t want to leave my family like this, due to bad decisions.
So in 2012 I finally made the ultimate decision, if I was going to lose weight for the last time, meaning keeping the weight off, I had to master eating right. In other words master and monitor what I put in my body. I wasn’t looking to lose weight fast. In fact I realized for the first time it wasn’t about losing weight; it was about becoming healthy. I was looking to invest the time that it took to research healthy living. Because we are all individually structured, I had to find what worked for me and my body in being healthy. With healthy living, I just knew the weight will begin to fall.
I have friends that say, "Man! You could die tomorrow! You have to live life to the fullest!" My question is what if you don't die tomorrow? You've lived life to the fullest and the results of that 'living' start to take a toll on you. God's intention for you is to live a long fruitful life. With that said, don't you think it would be a great idea to invest in a healthy lifestyle?
When I began my health journey this scripture helped me in many ways.
1 Corinthians 6:19-20 “Don’t you know that your body is a sanctuary of the Holy Spirit who is in you, whom you have from God? You are not your own, for you were bought at a price. Therefore glorify God in your body.”
Key in on the text, “…sanctuary of the Holy Spirit…” When you put in your mind ‘sanctuary’ you think about a dwelling or home. For instance, when we move into a new apartment or home, we can’t wait to decorate it how we want it. In other words a living environment we would be glad to call home. If we would do that for a house made by man, shouldn’t we do that for our bodies made by God?
He blessed us with the gifts of the Holy Spirit and faith, both housed in the sanctuary of the temple; our bodies. Our bodies were created by God for His purpose and glory. Our bodies should be fit and a healthy home for God’s gifts to us just as we make fit and healthy homes for ourselves.
This scriptures motivates me to be very careful of what I put in my temple because I am so grateful for the gifts inside me. What I put inside me, be it food and scripture, I consume with the intention of feeding God’s gifts in me!
The text also states, “…You are not your own, for you were bought at a price…” God has plans for you. It doesn’t matter what goes on in the world around you, He is in control. Part of the power in His plan is YOU.
How exciting is that?
One huge crucial part about being obedient is knowing that you belong to Him, not you. You were created for His purpose, not yours. When He created you, He created your hands; your feet; your ears; your hair; your eyes; everything about you for His purpose. This all falls into Him being in control.
Just think, you are a part of a large ‘salvation’ process, if you allow yourself to be. What makes you valuable is the sacrifice Jesus made for you on Calvary. Because of that sacrifice you were ‘bought at a price’ and saved by the blood of the Lamb!
Thank you Jesus!
Who knew you could get this excited about being healthy! It is exciting because you now realize the purpose to not only your existence; but to now understand the knowledge of your being.
And when I have my days when I want to fall off in my old habits of non-healthy eating habits I read a text from 1 Corinthians 9:27 “Instead, I discipline my body and bring it under strict control, so that after preaching to others, I myself will not be disqualified.”
God is so good!
That’s what I love about the Word, just when you think you can’t; the bible shows you that with God you can!
So forget about all the times you have attempted to lose weight. This journey is not about weight loss. In the past you may have been able to lose some weight under your own power. If you are like me, you’ve even spent years destroying the temple you have created by God with bad food, alcohol and other substances not meant for the good of the body.
There are juices out there, healthy meal plans and exercise that may help the outside but, (and remember this), only God can heal you. This is why this spiritual preparation is important before we even get into healthy eating and exercise. Because if God is not in your journey, you are just walking, enroute to nowhere.
We hope that this motivates you to first mentally prepare, then equip yourself with the knowledge and wisdom of God to healthy living. In a future blog we will revisit this topic and I will share more practical tips on how I started this healthy lifestyle.
In the meantime, don't take life for granted and make the choice today to Live in Peace with your body, mind and spirit!
In His Grip,
Billy and Yolanda
Join the Conversation!
We would love to hear your thoughts on this topic. We encourage you to comment below.
Here are two questions to consider:
1) What is the one area blocking you from living a healthier lifestyle?
2) What state of physical shape would you like your body to be in over the next 5 years?
Authors Billy & Yolanda
This is the place where we share our heart through God's Word in faith that will inspire and empower you to live in peace.