“I am just so frustrated because I am doing everything right, but I’m not really seeing any changes to my body.”
This is a common quote from any one of my health coaching clients, or frankly, from my own mind from time to time. I usually hear this type of remark about 2 weeks into developing new habits and rituals into the daily life of a woman attempting to get the body and level of fit that she desires.
We think that getting the body we want, we will get the life we want.
We think by achieving optimal health, we will live comfortably.
We think that if we are uncomfortable or struggling in some way with our health, we’re doing something wrong. That we must just need to try harder.
We grow impatient quickly. We grow weary.
Some of us at this stage will just give up and say, “Well, it’s just not meant to be. I’m just not meant to be fit.”
Others will start to take things into their own hands by beginning to “micromanage” their health. Assuming the more control they have, the more they’ll see results and the less risk of getting to an “uncomfortable” place again. They will start to rely on just themselves again.
For some reason, so many of us take God out of our goals for health. We put God in the “Spirit” category of life. He can come to church with me; He can help me find a new job and career; He can help me find a mate; He can help me repair my relationship with my (mom, grandpa, coworker etc.).
But our weight loss and eating habits? “No, no, we need to do this on our own. We can’t bother God with something so trivial!”
This is especially the case for those who don’t have much of a problem with their weight, but still have fitness goals. They’re not fighting anything like obesity, diabetes, or cancer that would require more prayer. But those who live in a pretty normal or healthy weight range but would still like to lose those few extra pounds will often leave God completely out of such category as fitness.
What if I told you that your HEALTH, no matter how big or how small your health goal is ABSOLUTELY dependent on your relationship with God.
In fact, your health, just like every other aspect of your life is a process to be SURRENDERED to God if it’s going to be a blessing to your life.
To Surrend’her means that you don’t give up, but you give UP. You stop trying to steer the boat yourself, but you don’t abandon your boat either. You stay in and you flow with God.
My sister-in-law, Laura, and I were talking the other day about some visions that God had given her. She said she kept picturing white water rafting, which is something she has never done before.
She said, “The beautiful thing about white water rafting is that in order to stay in the raft and handle the waves and rapids, you actually have to sit in the middle of the raft and not hold on to the sides or anything. You just have to trust and relax your body as much as possible and let your body bounce with the raft as it hits the rocks and waves. You have to surrender to it, just like we have to surrender to God.”
It was a beautiful analogy and I believe God was sending her a clear message that I was rewarded with too (as are all of you!).
I see God as not only the raft that is taking you down your “river of life”, but I see God as the water itself, the rocks you hit, and the other underlying creatures below the surface causing your life to be quite the ride! God is ALL of it and it all has purpose!
The key is, the more you surrender to the raft, the higher the rapids you can handle and the faster you can go.
Our bodies are so complex and our health goes so much deeper than what we can see in the mirror. Our metabolic systems run just like the rushing white water rapids down a river. They are constantly changing direction and moving according to the various hormone responses, food intake, weight, muscle mass, exercise exertion, water, vitamins and minerals and many more factors than that!
There is NO WAY that you can completely control and manipulate your metabolism, just like there is NO WAY you can control a raging river.
In your health, there comes a point that you just have to sit in the middle of the raft and surrend’her to it all. It takes an incredible amount of trust and faith to do this every day.
But, trusting the process of health IS trusting God.
Sarah Young in her book, Nearer to Jesus, reminds us “You can achieve the victorious life through living in deep dependence on (Jesus).”
Victorious life. Not “safe” life. Not “always comfortable” life. Not even “successful” life.
Victory in God means you have won the battle by giving up the sword. You put your hope in the Lord and you trust the process he has put before you. There is a process of nurturing and taking care of your health and your metabolism. There are choices you can make at every meal of every day that will help keep all systems running as efficiently as possible.
If you are struggling, seek the information you will need to learn about your body. Once you have the information, start making the changes in your life and trust that it will all be for Good. God can provide you resources for all.
As you start to make changes to your health, you accept every stumble, every fall, every wave, and every rock as signs that you are indeed doing something right. Because each stumble requires more and more dependence on God.
This is what He wants from you. He wants a relationship with you. For you to bring ALL things to Him, even something as trivial as weight loss.
For even in your discomfort, even in your failings and even in your shortcomings, you still have the Joy of the Lord when you keep Him by your side.
You do not give up.
But you sure do Surrend’her.