Shedding Weight

Wherefore seeing we also are compassed about with so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which doth so easily beset us, and let us run with patience the race that is set before us

Hebrews 12:1

As we start the New Year, there will be millions who have aspirations of making changes. Resolutions are made every year and some do not make it past the first month while others struggle to make it past the first day. I have spoken to some who don’t even want to try because they do not believe they will keep the resolution. I don’t much like the defeatist attitude as I believe it is important to have goals and aspirations. There is a brand that uses a slogan I love, “Better Than Yesterday.” We should always be spiritually growing, although it seems sometimes I take a step backward when my goal is to go forward. I hope to get better day by day with God’s help, and it is my goal to grow everyday.

Physical growth is oftentimes subtle and not always a good thing after puberty. Weight sneaks up on us and if you doubt that, take a look at your wedding or high school pictures and see if there is a difference. There have been some who have done well and kept the weight off, but their face shows wrinkles and the wear and tear of life. No matter what lotion we apply, the crow’s feet still land near our eyes and make their mark. I am sure losing weight will be at the top of many of our lists as we enter the new year; it will be atop mine as well. There are many reasons for us to want to shed weight, but ultimately we should want to be in good shape as our bodies are the temple God has given us to occupy His Spirit. We are to be good stewards of what God has given us and it is no mystery that the better we steward our bodies, the less physical problems we will have. Although it is important to be in good shape physically, it does little to trump the spiritual aspects of our life.

The verse in Hebrews speaks of running a race, and when you run a race, you want to be rid of any excess weight. We are told to rid ourselves of whatever holds us back in our spiritual race – the besetting sins, the sins we have fallen in love with and do not want to part from. The besetting sins hold us back and keep us from running the race God has called us to. I have heard some tell me they struggle with “only two things or three things”, but they have no plan to shed those sins and they live a life of spiritual defeat. The truth of the matter is that we will struggle until we get to Heaven, but there should now be a constant shedding of sins once God makes us aware of them. The sins of this world will always seem enticing, but they will hold us back in our goal and pursuit of Jesus Christ.

What are you holding on to that God has told you to shed? What is your plan to rid yourself of these besetting sins? Psalm 119:11 tells us, “Thy word have I hid in mine heart, that I might not sin against thee.” Jesus prepared Himself for temptation by reciting the Word of God back to the tempter, and we would be wise to prepare ourselves in the same way. The shedding of weight requires a plan and preparation. Are you preparing yourself for the new year, or will it be the same old, same old for you as it has been for several years? May this new year be different and may we be efficient and effective in running the race God has called us to. May we grow everyday in Him and may we be closer to Him today than we were yesterday.

Stay in the Fight!

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