Trimming the Fat

seed:

a desire to lose some excess pounds

You made a New Year’s resolution; your doctor told you that your health was in danger; your scale groans every time you climb aboard…basically you realized that you are too personally abundant. So the goal here is to trim the fat.

I am going to suggest something that may sound radical with regard to purpose. I say radical not in that it will be a foreign thought, but because it may seem a peripheral reason for losing weight. First though, let’s look at some of the reasons you may want to lose weight. These are not listed in order of importance; it’s just a list containing some possible reasons.

  1. Health: This is likely the primary reason for many of us since we all realize, even the youngest among us, that we are getting older and not physically better. Also, a great reason is to just be at a healthy weight. But I would contend not the best and most motivating reason.
  1. To look good: Now, we may want to believe that we are past vanity, but who among us really is? None of us, at least in entirety if we’re completely honest. However, this is a very poor reason.
  1. Pride: I will admit this is one of mine. I want to be proud of myself (which I realize is something I need to confess) and part of that is being in shape.
  1. Sticking it to…: Has someone hinted that you’re fat? Or maybe you just get the impression that people don’t take you as seriously because you’re overweight. Actually, research confirms that most people do hold those biases even if they are subconscious. Attractive people (and part of that is being in what is considered “good shape”) do better in our society. So, thumbing your slimmed-down nose at your detractors is satisfying, if petty.

There may be others like these, but none of them are the best, and I submit now, only reason. So what is the best reason you ask? Because we are God’s and He commands it. Although I had not previously considered this as one of my reasons for losing weight , it is now my chief objective and is supported by scripture.

1.Our bodies are the temples of the Holy Spirit if we are Christians. From verse 9 though the end of the sixth chapter of I Corinthians, Paul discusses how we are to keep our bodies pure for Christ. These snippets are among those verses:

– “No thieves, nor covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor extortioners, shall inherit the kingdom of God.” (v. 10) Don’t think you’re in that verse? I’ll explain in a second.

– “All things are lawful unto me, but all things are not expedient: all things are lawful for me, but I will not be brought under the power of any.” (v.12) Has food, or anything else, ever had power over you?

– “Meats for the belly, and the belly for meats: but God will destroy both it and them.” (v. 13) The importance of appetites of all types versus God.

– “Know ye not that your bodies are the members of Christ? Shall I then take the members of Christ, and make them the members of an harlot?” (v. 15) Okay, this one may sound a bit harsh. It compares the us to prostitutes. But what is it when someone sells their soul for a donut?

– “What? Know ye not that your body is the temple of the Holy Ghost which is in you, which ye have of God, and ye are not your own?” (v. 16) Keep the temple pure and holy as a sacrifice unto God so that He will inhabit it.

– “For ye are bought with a price: therefore glorify God in your body, in your spirit, which are God’s.” (v. 20) Do you let your dog poop in someone else’s yard? Do you see your neighbor’s lawnmower sitting outside and go take it? That land is not yours and neither is the lawnmower. If we ask we may be allowed to use the lawnmower or if the dog does her business in another’s yard it is your duty to pick it up. Don’t misuse what belongs to someone else. It was bought with a price. Before you became Christ’s you could do anything you wanted, but since the Holy Spirit moved in it’s time to give Him the keys and treat His house well.

2.Drunkards and gluttons are sometimes given the same warnings. You may heard that before, but do you know what it says about drunkards and gluttons in the Bible?

– In Deuteronomy 21, gluttony is equated not only with drunkenness but also with violation of the fifth commandment. What is the penalty? “And all the men of the city shall stone him with stones, that he die.” (v. 21) I guess God considers gluttony to be a pretty serious sin.

– Proverbs 23: 20, 21a says “Be not among winebibbers; among riotous eaters of flesh: for the drunkard and the glutton shall come to poverty.” In case you think that “riotous” refers to extreme partiers and not just people who overeat, several other versions omit the word altogether.

– The Pharisees scorned Jesus in Matthew 11:19 and Luke 7:34 about being a glutton. He set them straight.

– Psalm 69:12 says, “They that sit in the gate speak against me; and I was the song of the drunkards.” Mockers of God and the people of God.

This is a little harsh probably, but I put it to myself. God despises anything that comes between He and I. No matter what that thing is. (Matthew 10:34-38)

3.In Ecclesiastes (especially at the end of chapter 2) it talks about food and how it can be a pleasure that is misused and is a vanity.

Those are some of the scriptures I have looked up and it is a motivator. Any reason for coming to a healthy weight and level of in-shape-ness is acceptable, but, for a Christian, following Christ is the first order. It is also the chief motivator.

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