|If you follow me, you know that over the last few weeks, I’ve shared greetings from the middle of my mess. Let me state for the record, sunshine, I am ok with my messy life. In fact–I am loving and embracing it.
I am in a good place–a very good place–in my life right now.
But guess what?
It’s still messy. But it’s the best, healthiest place I’ve ever been. Ever.
And I didn’t get here with a shake of a Magic 8 ball or head shake and wink from I Dream of Jeannie.
You see, in the picture on the left, I lived in a toxic place–emotionally and spiritually (and physically), I was dying. Little Debbie and Duncan Hines were my best friends, and they helped me numb my pain–temporarily. They fed me lies that they would help me feel better and take away the pain; but they never knew the pain of weighing 300lbs. and feeling rejected, lonely, and afraid of being unloved forever.
The picture in the middle brought some new best friends–microdieting and Bally’s Fitness. They were “good” friends–but they also lied to me–because exercise couldn’t be “bad”, right?! Wrong!
They gave me ultimatums–you must work out 4-5 hours everyday; you must eat less; you must drink 3 gallons of water; you must lift heavier; you must wear LuluLemon. Life with them was full of what I must do to be accepted.
But then came the picture on the right.
It represents the after the after.
For some it might portray that I’ve “let myself go” or “fell off the bandwagon.” And others may say that my current “overweight” status is unhealthy.
But I need you to know this–I wasn’t healthy in 2:3 pictures. Health is more than a number on the scale or dress size, sunshine.
The picture on the right is my healthiest self to date.
Despite some pounds that I need to shed to be in better cardiovascular health (and so I can fit into all of my clothes in my closet without a body shaper), my spirit and mind are focused and centered.
My bffs are The Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, and I don’t live in a place of false promises, ultimatums, or feelings of rejection, loneliness, hopelessness, or fear. Rather I live in place of joy, peace, contentment and service. I live wondering, “How can I make God bigger?”
Let me tell you, sunshine.
There is no, “I arrived! Look at me! I got it all together.”
Instead it’s more like, “I’ve been there, and I’m here to help you this time!”
I am here to help you through whichever stage you’re in.
Your after your after.
I will tell you–it takes work.
It involves effort.
It requires laying selfish desires down for the vision of something bigger, fuller, richer, and more rewarding than you could ever achieve on your own.
So where are you, the before, after, or after the after?
Pursuing a job? In a job that doesn’t use your talents? Recently unemployed?
Waiting for “the one”? In a relationship that’s challenging?Transitioning through a divorce?
Want to lose weight? In the process of losing weight? Trying to maintain your weight loss?
No matter where you are, you are not alone, dear one.
Thank God for the life stage you’re in, not particularly for the challenge, but that He’s giving you strength to endure and making you more like His Son through each and every trial. (1 Thes 5:18)