Several weeks ago I read a book called Master Your Metabolism (Jillian Michaels). My doctor and I suspect that I’ve been experiencing some insulin resistance and I needed to find a way to regain my health.
I enjoyed reading the book. It’s full of helpful information and practical advice. I was feeling empowered, ready to lose some tummy fat, ready to get my energy back, and ready to feel good again. I was beginning to feel thinner already! This book was exactly what I needed and I was no longer a prisoner to bad health. I was healthy. I was unstoppable.
Did you see the progression there? Just by reading the book I convinced myself that I was already healthier. Imagine my disappointment when, a few weeks later I came to my senses and realized I wasn’t any healthier at all! Was it a bad book? Was I misinformed?
Not at all. It’s a great book and it has the power to help any reader find better health…
…IF said reader does what it says.
The same is true for anything we try to do. We can get all of the best information, secure all of the right tools, and be filled with hope and courage that change is on its way. If we use the tools, we’ll probably see great results. If not, we’ve just set ourselves up for another fall. Maybe we’ll blame it on the tool because it didn’t work. Maybe we’ll blame ourselves because we failed again. Maybe we’ll decide we’re just stuck where we are because if that last tool didn’t help, nothing will. Here’s the thing:
You have to use the tool!
It is my heart’s desire to be an instrument in God’s hands that will help free the captives from the darkness of depression and other strongholds. I promise to do whatever I can to bring you valuable information, compassionate support, Biblical counsel, and honest, personal testimony. And I ask something of you in return: I ask that you make a commitment to “do the hard stuff.”
This is a battle.
It is real.
And you will not win if you do not fight.
Jesus won the battle for your soul on the cross. You have an enemy who will do whatever it takes to convince you that you are not free. In that sense, the battle still rages. (Ephesians 6:12)
Are you willing to pick up your weapons? Will you do the work that freedom requires?
If not, I can’t help you.
I could say all the right things. I can give you the most sincere and empathetic encouragement a person can muster. But if you simply read these words — or the words of someone else that God sends your way — and do not put them into action, you will not be changed.
Will you make a promise to yourself today? Will you promise to pick up your armor and fight?
No more excuses.
This is not a classroom where the empathetic teacher can still give you a good grade –even though you didn’t do your work– because you provided a valid excuse. This is a battle, and there are no wins for people who don’t “show up.”
So, if I…
…explain to you that exercise is vital to your mental health…
…tell you that you need to have quality relationships in your life…
…show you some powerful changes you need to make in your diet…
…suggest that you stop ruminating on the negative things in your life…
…encourage you to discover the truth about who you are in Christ…
…tell you to stop looking for support in all the wrong places…
(…and I will…)
…then don’t tell me you’re too busy, or too tired, or too broke, or you already know that, or you can’t control that… or whatever.
This is your life.
I want you to win this battle. I want you to turn around and help the person climbing the mountain behind you to win their battle. If you want that too then you must choose to take up your weapons, put on your armor, show up at the battle, and do the hard stuff.
And I’ll show up with you, armed for the fight.
- Memorize James 1 23-25 *see note below “Anyone who listens to the word but does not do what it says is like a man who looks at his face in a mirror and, after looking at himself, goes away and immediately forgets what he looks like. But the man who looks intently into the perfect law that gives freedom, and continues to do this, not forgetting what he has heard, but doing it—he will be blessed in what he does.”
- Write a contract with yourself, or between you and God. Vow to put the things God shows you (Whether here or elsewhere) into action.
- Read the other articles in this series if you haven’t already, you can find them here. (Read from oldest to newest posts.)
Please share this article if you found it to be helpful.
I’ll be praying for you this week!
*By asking you to memorize this verse, I in no way mean to imply that what I have to say is equivalent to the Word of God. I’m just pointing out the concept of doing what we’ve learned.