Yesterday's post included a very hurtful comment that was made to me soon after we lost Lukey. I am so very thankful for the kind and encouraging words that have been shared with us today. Those responses have reminded me that, by far, the majority of things that have been shared with us over the past 9+ months fall on the helpful side of things... no doubt about that. But it's so easy to remember the discouraging, hurtful words and to lose sight of the fact that we have in many ways been sustained by the thoughtful, grace-filled, and loving verbal embraces that have been streamed our way... from family and friends and acquaintances and even complete strangers... it's been remarkable.
So I am reminded of the need to keep things in perspective, to try and remain balanced in my thinking, and to not allow myself to be tangled up in the enemy's web of lies... because, the fact is, the harmful words have been greatly outweighed by the tender ones.
I've had a theory for some time that came back to me late this afternoon while out for a run... which, by the way, took place in temperatures that were hovering around 20 degrees... made me run faster.
Anyway, I've noticed throughout my adult life that when I put on weight, it seems to settle right around my mid-section... you know, STS, the Spare Tire Syndrome. (I'm guessing that I'm not alone here.) The reality is, it wasn't an issue for me until I transitioned from competitive athletics to recreational/leisure activities... which occurred when I was about 20 years of age... and it included a lot of golf which, doesn't exactly induce much in the way of sustained elevated heart rate or the development of any kind of significant cardiovascular fitness.
The problem at that point was that I continued to eat as though I was still burning massive amounts of calories every day. So, obviously, I packed on the pounds. Then, at around age 25 or 26, I got into running and by the time I was about 28 I was pretty much addicted to it... to the tune of 25-30 miles a week. So, obviously, I trimmed down and was perhaps as fit as I ever have been... and I once again enjoyed the unbelievable luxury of eating whatever I wanted whenever I wanted.
Then I got married... and I suppose you know what that means. I was a full-time grad student and on the weekends I traveled with Nicol when she was out singing... all of which translated into no time for exercise and the re-development of some extremely poor eating habits.
All that to say this... between the ages of 25 and 35 my weight fluctuated between 205 and 260. The point? Like I said at the outset, I've noticed that my "trouble spot" is my waist-line... when I put on weight it tends to start there and keep on expanding from there.
The theory? My sin "trouble-spots" are much the same as the weight trouble spot I just described in that I struggle both continually and in different seasons of life with certain sin issues. In other words, just as my belly is a trouble spot with regard to carrying extra weight, so are certain specific areas of sin a problem which, when fed or ignored, can get out of control in a hurry. In the same way that I have to be intentional about reaching and maintaining a healthy weight thru diet and exercise, I have to be consciously aware of my specific struggles with sin and I have to be intentional about the daily fight that I face.
Does this make any sense?
The good news, of course, is this...
In your struggle against sin you have not yet resisted to the point of shedding your blood. -Hebrews 12:4
Jesus took care of that part. We struggle with sin, but He struggled to the point of death so that our struggle is not in vain.