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Tipping the Scales

I was a rather lightweight child with the exception of a couple of pudgy years in adolescence. Post age 40 I have tried three different approaches to shedding unnecessary body weight. I was pretty successful at maintenance for seven or eight years and then something changed. It’s easy to “let go” when you feel yourself starting to slide away from what you thought you had established. “Oh, well, what’s a few pounds,” or a similar rationale as you munch on pizza or cake.

I am starting a new weight management plan today and I’m hungry. I have a variety of prepared nutrition snacks on this plan and I’m drinking lots of water. I’ve actually heard my stomach growl today, something I don’t often experience. Another thing I noticed right away is that I have so much more time when I don’t spend it preparing or planning food while I’m in this phase.

Perhaps you are familiar with the saying, “Eat to live, not live to eat.” Yet food is available for most of us in great tantalizing quantities. We use food to connect with others and to great celebrations. I think the colors, flavors, textures and smells of food are truly great blessings from God. But something goes terribly wrong when we make food our worship, by indulging or restricting. By that I mean the stuff that we continually focus upon. Some even call it an addiction. Food can masquerade as filling other human needs. Certainly food focus can result in destruction and death.

I want to hold onto my goals which are much greater than a number on my scales or a size of clothing. The real goal is for optimal health at any age. The reality of taking four daily prescription medications, having knee surgery and other assorted pains provided me with a wake-up call. I want to be able to enjoy spending time with two active grandsons and my adult children. I do not want to lose my ability to enjoy walking or relationships. I want to be useful for God’s purposes in my life for as long as possible.

Wouldn’t it be amazing if there was crossover learning from body nourishment to soul nourishment? What if I heard my soul “growl” when I was hungry for time with God? Why do I insist on surviving on a spirit-loss plan with meager snacks? I am hoping that this break from food indulgence will provide me with more opportunity to, “Taste and see that the Lord is good…” (Psalms 34:8, NIV).

Questions for personal journaling or group discussion:

1. What has been your experience with weight management? How did it affect your relationships?

2. Which people receive more of your critical thoughts: the overweight or the underweight?

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About Karen Spruill

Karen Spruill

writes from Orlando, Florida.

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