Get fit or forfeit what God has for you. That is the word I just got today. It is a heavy word, not necessarily one I wanted to hear.
What Is God Saying?
One always assumes the bearer of the word has fulfilled the word. This is certainly not true in this case. I have lost weight, but I have a long way to go to get totally fit.
This was definitely a word for me. Still I was prompted to share because I feel it could be for you, as well.
I have gotten this kind of word many times. When I was extremely large it was more in the line of lose weight or lay down and die.
Even thinking about what God had in my future was really moot point then. If I didn’t lose weight I would die. End of story. No need for purpose.
Now that I have lost weight, I’ve been asking God for the next step. I thought it had to do with writing more books, coaching others on how to lose weight, speaking or taking advantage of a myriad of other opportunities becoming available to me. None of these are on hold. I’m moving forward on all of them because the answer God just gave me is foundational for the energy I will need to get all of those done.
I see that now but it did seem rather out of sync when I got it. Still, I knew it was God because that’s the way He talks to me. I give Him choice a, b or c and he gives 437. It’s never what I expect, but always exactly what I need.
Discipline and Hard Work
I’ve talked to many people recently who are frustrated because their life is not moving along the ministry line they thought it would be. Or they have several options and they want God to show them which one and yet they are getting no answers. Silence.
I was there for many years and I certainly don’t want to go back to the days of silence from God.
I cried out to God many times through the years regarding my weight issue. I wanted Him to swoop down and magically melt the weight off of me. Surely there was something that would make that happen. I kept trying to find the easy way to get the weight off fast.
I spent 30 years trying to find it all the time losing and gaining the weight back plus more.
What I’ve come to realize about God is He really wants us to learn that some things come with discipline and hard work. It’s in that process that breakthrough comes and promotion to the next level.
So I come back to my get fit message today. I so wanted to shout, “I wasn’t praying about what you wanted me to do regarding my body. I’m like OK with my body. Sure a few more pounds gone would be good, but I don’t want to spend inordinate amounts of time in the gym.”
Walking and Leaping and Praising God
In the process of losing weight, I’ve become aware of some nerve damage in my legs which causes me to not be able to walk as well as I want to. I’ve prayed for healing. I’ve been exercising in the water. Now I’m realizing right at the time when I’m gearing up for many other projects that God is calling me to more discipline, maybe even some sweat.
I know it will take work, but I also know God will direct me in just exactly how I am to get fit. He did that each step of the way with weight loss. It was a step-by-step process. He did that with the book I wrote. Each time I had no idea of what to do next He would put someone in my path to lead me or give me information. And each time I knew it was Him.
He knows the deep desire of my heart is to go “walking and leaping and praising God.”2 I have claimed that verse for so long.
Now, He is directing me in how to have my prayer answered. I won’t ignore His voice like I did for years regarding weight loss
I know His voice. I know the tenor of His voice, how He speaks and in what manner. I will continue to listen for specific instructions. In the meantime, I will push the time I run in the water instead of merely walk and I will investigate classes at my local gym.
What Does God Have In Store?
I only know this. If what God’s got up His sleeve for me is anything like the last year, I don’t want to forfeit it.
Not on my life.
For those of you wondering what God wants for your life, the first thing has to do with treating your body like the temple of God. Nothing else is more important than that.
“Don’t you realize that your body is the temple of the Holy Spirit, who lives in you and was given to you by God? You do not belong to yourself, for God bought you with a high price. So you must honor God with your body.”3
You can’t move forward unless you are treating God like God by maintaining His dwelling place here on earth.
Begin there and let Him see that you have the discipline and desire to overcome the things you crave. He will help you. His power will sustain you. His grace will move you forward, but you must do the hard work. I know this only too well.
I know this word is for me, but it is also for some of you. Is it for you? What will you do differently?
1 Mark 6:37 NLT
2 Acts 3:8 NIV
32 Corinthians 6:19-20 NLT
Teresa Shields Parker is a wife, mother, business owner, speaker and author of Sweet Grace: How I Lost 250 Pounds and Stopped Trying to Earn God’s Favor and Sweet Grace Study Guide: Practical Steps to Lose Weight and Overcome Sugar Addiction. Get a free chapter of her memoir on her blog at Teresa Shields Parker.com. Connect with her there or on her Facebook page.