Sunday, March 8, 2015

Keeping the temple

Everything is permissible (allowable and lawful) for me; but not all things are helpful (good for me to do, expedient and profitable when considered with other things). Everything is lawful for me, but I will not become the slave of anything or brought under its power. – 1 Corinthians 6:12 (AMP)
Pregnancy messed up my hormones.
That’s when my weight problems started. Never mind that during my first pregnancy I kept a bag of candy in my desk drawer at school because I’d developed a fondness for gummy spearmint leaves and devoured them by the handful.
Image courtesy of kjnnt
Here I was the girl my grandmother called “peanut” because I was so small and who was mortified when the scales tipped at 135 when I was in college.
With every pregnancy (there were three), I kept on more weight. Then I was diagnosed with hypothyroidism. When your metabolism slows down like it does when your thyroid gland is underactive, you gain weight and it’s next to impossible to get it off. So I said.
The baseball years didn’t help because when you eat on the run, you tend to consume fast foods that have little nutritional value but pack on the pounds. And then there were the pizza parties after the games.
Over the years, I’ve lost and gained and lost and gained – you know the drill. I’ve tried all kinds of diets. I lost weight but gained it all back (and then some) when I went off the diet.
Currently I’m eating gluten-free. And while I feel better – no sluggishness, brain fog, body aches, fatigue – I’ve learned “gluten-free” isn’t the magic bullet that will melt away all these unwanted pounds. I still have to avoid consuming too many calories, I still have to eat the foods that are right for me, and I still have to exercise three times a week if I want to see the numbers on the scale go down.
One thing all those diets did was teach me what I could eat and what I shouldn’t. I wish I could eat all the bread and pasta I want and not gain weight. But that’s not going to happen.
So I’ve got to be diligent about “temple keeping.”
Image courtesy of Salvatore Vuono
My body, you see, is a temple of the Holy Spirit (see 1 Corinthians 6:19-20), so “keeping the temple” means I take good care of it, physically, mentally, and spiritually. Body, mind, and spirit are all connected. If I neglect the physical, the spiritual and mental will also suffer for it.
Just like Jesus drove out the moneychangers from the temple, so I, too, must drive out anything that causes more harm than good.
That doesn’t mean that I can’t occasionally indulge in pizza or spearmint leaves. It does mean that I don’t allow them to become addictions.
It’s easy to blame my weight problems on pregnancy, hypothyroidism, and busyness. But the real reason comes down to the choices I made in eating and exercising.
I want this temple to last a long time and work the way it should. And that means I make the right choices in what goes in – physically, mentally, and spiritually.
What about you? How well are you keeping your temple?
Dear God, help me to make the right choices when it comes to feeding my body, mind, and spirit. Help me to be a good temple keeper. Amen.
More tea: Read John 2:13-17

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