I became overweight my junior year of high school and continued to gain until I hit 200lbs my sophomore year of college. Being young and easily influenced by media, I desperately wanted to be thin and for all the wrong reasons. At the time I thought being skinny equated to being beautiful, and in my mind you couldn’t be beautiful without being skinny. I thought my worth could be measured in inches, by standing on a scale and by looking in the mirror. I was struggling spiritually with finding any sort of purpose for my life. I wasn’t uniquely talented, or impressively intelligent. I didn’t necessarily have big dreams or a passion for anything that would change the world.
With every pound I gained my self worth plummeted. I tried Weight Watchers and it worked temporarily, but I was always hungry and struggling to stay motivated. I never lost more than 10lbs before it would start packing right back on. I would beat myself up for every “failure”. I would give up all together, stumbling into a downward spiral that always ended with me at a heavier weight than I started. I can’t tell you how often I felt hopeless.
I found Equipped in 2010 and that was when the renewing of a healthier body and mind.
Before I met Julie, I wasn’t trying to get healthy, I was trying to get skinny. I wasn’t trusting God with His plan for my body. I was convinced that it was for me to be a size 5, weighing 130lbs, with perfectly sculpted arms and legs and maybe even some killer abs. Haha I quickly learned that it was about so much more than that.
God used Julie and her ministry to do a serious makeover not only on my exterior but more importantly on my heart. Until this point I wasn’t ready to undergo such a transformation without truly believing that God loves me no matter what. I didn’t know it at the time, but God had much greater plans in mind than just weight loss. I discovered what it means to feel beautiful in my own skin and to love my body no matter what it looks like.
The real game changer this time around was that it wasn’t about me anymore. It was about glorifying God with a healthy vessel willing and capable of doing whatever He had planned next. I had no idea if that meant living in the bush of South Africa loving orphans and widows, or building schools in Guatamala. What I did know was that IF God intended to use me in these ways, I was definitely not proving myself to be a ready and willing servant by not taking care of the body He gave me. I realized that I was lazy in my mentality that if it was His plan then the pounds would simply melt away. I was meant to glorify God through this journey; singing His praises when it was time to buy smaller clothing, and leaning on my Equipped community when the results didn’t match my efforts.
Through Equipped I lost 50lbs and have kept it off for 5 years. My self esteem has been forever changed. Yes, I’m still human and admit I struggle from time to time but I always draw my strength from the challenges I overcame.
God had a great purpose for my journey. I am equipped for Him. How will you glorify God with a healthy body and mind?