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Thursday, September 22, 2011

The Perfect FIT

Besides the new Facebook layout and any sort of high-school-level math, there are two definite areas of my life that cause the biggest struggle for me: my weight and my faith.
I started Weight Watchers in February 2008. I started attempting to serve the Lord about a year later, and as I began to listen to sermons and read the Bible, I started to see some correlation between the two. I thought about compiling all of my observations and maybe put them in a book or something, but like most of my brilliant ideas, I didn’t write any of them down and now they’re lost to the ages.

Every now and then one will come to me and I won’t write it down, so I decided to try to reign in this idea to form some kind of coherent thought. Often times, I find it much easier to understand my own thoughts than to try to explain them to someone else, but I’ll give it the old college try.

The concept that hasn’t yet left me is what I call the FIT moments.

A phrase I like to use for these moments is “in for a penny, in for a pound.” Basically, FIT stands for F-it, as in, “F it. I’ve already blown it. Or, F-it, I’ve gone this far, what’s one more step?”

I’ve had so many of these moments, that’s it’s hard to keep track. As a matter of fact, I had several over the last few days.

“Birthday cake? FIT! I’ll get back on track tomorrow.”

“Share a giant tub of popcorn? FIT! Go home after eating the popcorn and have a peanut butter and jelly sandwich? FIT! I already had the popcorn.”

“Well, my alarm is going off so I can get up and read my Bible. FIT! I didn’t do it yesterday, may as well go back to sleep.”

These moments make me feel worse than just about anything else—which is good. If I didn’t feel bad about these, it would mean I’ve lost all sense of direction. However, the more FIT moments there are, the easier they are to take, until eventually you realize that you’re numb to them.

I don’t think it’s the FIT moments that need to stop. It’s the one moment just before it that needs to addressed. There would be no FIT moment had there not been some sort of action that preceded it. If I could just go back and identify that moment, and stop it before it happens, I’d be fine. However, there’s no way to determine when that occurs. When you do realize what it was, it’s after the fact. And, unless you’re Jake Gyllenhaal in Prince of Persia, it’s impossible to back and change it.

“Hmm…perhaps if I hadn’t that ice cream sundae before lunch, I wouldn’t be ok with the french fries at lunch.”

It’s kind of like getting into a car accident. You realize had you or whoever was really at fault (though the odds are that it was me) not run the stop sign or whatever, there would’ve been no accident—a preceding action lead to disaster.

Or, maybe there’s a snowball effect in play here. One bad decision leads to another which leads to another and so on and on until you just say, “FIT! I’m done with this. I quit,” and you abandon what you were trying to do to begin with.

When it comes to our spiritual health, we may make one mistake and then assume that since we did, we’ve failed, so why stop there! We may feel like we’ve disappointed God, that we’ve let Him down and that there’s no way He can let this one go.

That kind of thinking not only limits ourselves by saying we’re slaves to our flesh and that there’s no room for improvement, but –even more erroneous (yep, I used erroneous)—it limits God. It sends the message that we believe that our issue, whatever it is, is bigger than God. It sends the message that the drink we had, the stuff we looked at, the things we’ve said have more power than the redeeming blood of Christ.

We think that whatever we’ve just done has completely negated all the progress we’ve made in our journey. When I shovel ice cream into my mouth, or when I gain one little pound, I feel like it’s totally negated the 200+ I’ve already lost. But, it hasn’t. It may have caused a bump in the road, but you don’t turn your car around when you come to a speed bump, do you? No, you drive over it and keep going.

Do you even remember that speed bump once you get further down the road? Probably not, so why do we remember pre-FIT moment? If God doesn’t keep track, why should we?

“I—yes, I alone—will blot out your sins for my own sake and will never think of them again.”—Isaiah 43:25 (NLT)

“As far as the east is from the west, so far has He removed our transgressions from us.”—Psalm 103:12 (AMP)

It’s over.

Leave the FIT and pre-FIT moments in the past and move on.

Better yet, try to stop the FIT moments before they start. Accept the pre-FIT moment for what it was and redirect your focus. 

Every FIT moment has potential to be a new starting point as does every moment after that.

“The faithful love of the Lord never ends! His mercies never cease. Great is his faithfulness; his mercies begin afresh each morning.”—Lamentations 3:22-23 (NLT)

Every moment is the opportunity to hit reset on your losing game.

Every moment is the chance to go back three spaces.

Every moment is a new beginning. Don’t waste it.

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