Christian Weight Loss: Does God Care About Your Weight?

 

“Does God really care about our weight?” A young woman emailed me that question recently after reading about my Christian weight loss success story. I gave her the short answer, but it inspired me to look deeper at the subject.

In this article, I want to share my answer to that question as well as some other controversial questions surrounding weight loss programs for Christians and then, my thoughts on the ideal Christian weight loss program.

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The questions I will answer include:

  • Does God really care about our weight?
  • Can I ‘shame and guilt’ my way into changing?
  • If I fall short in my weight loss plan, do I disappoint God?
  • What is the best Christian weight loss approach?
  • Can I eliminate the desire for quick fixes?

So let’s get started with the questions…

Does God really care about our weight?

No, God does not care what you weigh. The bible says that man looks on the outside but God looks on the heart (1 Samuel 16:7). God loves you just as much at a size 28 as at a size 8. Nothing you do can make Him love you more than he does now.

What does God care about? Our bodies are temples of the Holy Spirit. We are called to glorify God in body and spirit (1 Corinthians 6:19-20). In John 15:8, Jesus tells us how we glorify God: “By this My Father is glorified, that you bear much fruit; so you will be My disciples.”

The fruit that Jesus is talking about is the fruit of the Spirit. We are to bear much love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control (see Galatians 5:22-23).

Any thoughts or behavior in your life that have become weeds hindering the fruit that you bear concern God. In my case, compulsive overeating was that behavior – one that I was using to hide myself from emotional pain. My excess weight was just an outward manifestation of what was going on in my heart.

So you see, the real issue is not about size, but stewardship. God can teach you how to become a good steward of your body and remove the hindrances that keep you from bearing fruit. Humble yourself and pray the same prayer that King David prayed in Psalm 139: 23-24:

Search me, O God, and know my heart;
Try me, and know my anxieties;
And see if there is any wicked way in me,
And lead me in the way everlasting.

Caring for your body requires wisdom and balance. Only with God’s help can you gain both. As I learned to build my health through following Godly wisdom in my eating behavior and through disciplining my body with regular exercise, my weight took care of itself.

I’ll discuss this point more later in the article.

Can I ‘shame and guilt’ myself into changing?

I’ve read many articles about weight loss for Christians, and some seem to endorse the “shame your way to change” approach. But that approach does not work. Well, not for long!

Why? Because shame and guilt ignores the grace of God. Trying to use shame as a motivator ultimately leads to frustration, hopelessness, discouragement, and depression.

But meditating on the grace of God, his goodness, and his love for you constantly leads to a renewed heart and inspires repentance (a change of heart and mind). You acknowledge that God personally formed every part of your body skillfully and wonderfully, and you want to honor him by taking care of it.

A change in daily behavior is evidence of true repentance.

If I fall short in my weight loss plan, do I disappoint God?

The other issue I’ve seen is Christians thinking they are “disappointing God” by falling short in their weight loss plan. But this too is an error in thinking. Disappointment comes about when you expect something of a person and are surprised when they don’t come through. But God already knows everything about you. He knows about your mistakes before you make them! So how can you ever disappoint him? Not only that, but he already has a plan in place to help you recover!

Secondly, there is really no way that you can fall short if you use each mistake as a building block, not a stumbling block. What can you learn from the mistake that can propel you forward?

God is ever patient in teaching you the right way and leading you in the way you should go. Remember Philippians 1:6: “…being confident of this very thing, that He who has begun a good work in you will complete it until the day of Jesus Christ”. With that in mind, resolve to never give up on yourself. Hold fast to your confidence.

What is the best Christian weight loss approach?

Scripture says that the kingdom of God is righteousness, peace, and joy in the Holy Spirit. So any thoughts or behaviors that are contrary to God’s word, that takes away your joy, and that disrupts your peace concern God. All of these hinder your ability to fulfill the purpose for which God created you.

Remember that Jesus said that his food was to do the will of God? As his disciples, it is our mission as well.

Let me cover what should be different in how a Christian approaches weight loss. The differences arise from:

  • Our identity
  • Our reason
  • Our methods

Our Identity

We are disciples of Jesus Christ and our aim is to walk as he walked.  In Revelation 1: 5-6, we are told that Jesus through his sacrifice has made us kings and priest to God. In Romans 5:17, scripture says that we who have received the abundance of grace and the gift of righteousness will reign in life through Jesus.

In contrast, I remember my past struggle with emotional eating issues. I felt out of control with certain foods, feeling they controlled me rather than me reigning over them! And I felt powerless to change the other habits that led to my weight gain.

It was only by assuming my true identity in Christ that I gained victory. When I had a severe chest pain at 240 pounds and God whispered to me, “It is not supposed to be this way” then I chose to believe him. I had to open myself up to his leading in the way it was supposed to be.

In the process, I admitted my weakness; I asked God for help in prayer daily and walked out the guidance he gave me daily in rooting out the habits that were destroying my health.

I also learned to appreciate my body as the temple of the Holy Spirit. It was not an overnight change, but it certainly is a lasting one!

Our Reason
Jesus said in John 4:34 that, “My food is to do the will of Him who sent Me, and to finish His work.” As Christians that is our mandate as well. However, when I was obese and really examined my thoughts, I was shocked to discover how much of them centered around food, not on doing my Father’s will. My main source of joy was thinking about what I was going to eat and when.

But an effective Christian weight loss program teaches us to restore a right relationship to food. God created food for us to enjoy, to give us energy, and to provide the raw materials for our bodies to repair and rebuild themselves. But food was never meant to control our lives.

Hebrews 12:1 urges all of us, “let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which so easily ensnares us, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us.”

The Method

An ideal weight loss program for Christians would use biblical principles to guide us into reaching our best weight.

When I created Take Back Your Temple, one of the guiding scriptures is this one from Proverb 23: 1-3:

“When you sit down to eat with a ruler,

Consider carefully what is before you;

And put a knife to your throat

If you are a man given to appetite.

Do not desire his delicacies,

For they are deceptive food.”

Two principles are given regarding eating – eating with wisdom and eating with self control.

Eating with wisdom

You are the ruler in this case since most of the time, you are serving food to yourself. So the guidance is to consider your food carefully. Not be anxious over it, not worry over it, but do consider it.

One thing to consider first is what a privilege it is to have food to eat at all.  As you know, many people in the world do not have food, so it’s not a small thing that you have the ability to get food. That’s something to be grateful for.

With being able to get food comes responsibility to ensure that the food you eat helps you and doesn’t hurt you. Scripture says that some food is deceptive. Many modern processed foods (those found in a bag, box, or can) impair your body’s natural hunger/fullness signals, which can lead to out-of-control cravings and overeating. Remember the potato chip slogan, “Bet you can’t eat just one”? It is true! That statement applies to many junk foods and the manufacturers like it that way. The more you eat, the more money for them.

So make it your business to learn about the foods that you tend to eat and the effect they have on your body. I advise you to pay at least as much attention to what you put in your body as what you put on it.

When you shift your focus from losing weight to building health, your body will naturally reach the weight that is best for you.

Eating with self control

The bible puts it bluntly, “Put a knife to your throat if you are a man given to appetite.” One of the fruits of the Holy Spirit is the fruit of self control. You already have it but like any muscle, it must be exercised to grow stronger.

One aspect of self control is to learn to eat when your body is hungry. If you have a weight problem, chances are you have disconnected from your body’s natural hunger signals.

Proverbs 23:21 says, “For the drunkard and the glutton will come to poverty, and drowsiness will clothe a man with rags.” The implication here is that when you practice gluttony (overeating), you become drowsy and when you are drowsy, your judgment is impaired.

To hear the voice of the Holy Spirit, your mind must be alert and sharp. But if you are going through life with brain fog (as I was when I overindulged regularly with food) then you are more likely to make decisions that you will regret later.

Discipline your body

I believe that as you increase your physical strength it enhances your mental and emotional strength. In 1 Corinthians 9:27, the apostle Paul says “But I discipline my body and bring it into subjection, lest, when I have preached to others, I myself should become disqualified.”

A regular exercise program shows you vividly that your body is your servant, not your master. Remember that as you go about the work God has called you to, your spirit does not get tired but your mind and body can.

So you want to do everything you can to improve your physical strength, endurance, and flexibility so that your physical condition can better respond to spiritual demands.

Can you eliminate the desire for quick fixes?

I don’t believe it is possible to eliminate the desire for a quick fix. I think that is part of our sin/flesh nature. It’s like little children on a road trip to Disney World continually asking their parents, “Are we there yet?” When little children want something good, they don’t want to wait to get it. They want it now!

But as mature believers, we recognize the truth of the scripture that says that we inherit God’s promises through faith and patience (see Hebrews 6:12). Patience is part of the fruit of the spirit and as I mentioned previously with self-control, it must be exercised to grow (see Galatians 5:22).

With that being said, you’ll never get to “Disney World” as long as you stay at home. You have to get on the right road to it. Then once you are on the road, you can enjoy the trip by reminding yourself that you will get there in time – encourage yourself continually. You can also amuse yourself by making your goal a game daily. For example, count how many healthy choices you make each day and every day try to match or beat your previous score.

Finally enjoy the scenery along the way…notice you getting stronger, fitter, faster than you were before. Notice better muscle tone. Notice less shortness of breath. All of these will ensure that you will not only enjoy your ideal size when you get it, but enjoy yourself all the way to it.

I hope this article clearly provides my stand on some controversial Christian weight loss questions. And if weight is an issue for you, ask God to show you wisdom in how to handle it.

I am not special – the victory he gave to me, he can give to you!

Kim

Kimberly Taylor, C.W.C.
Certified Wellness Coach
Author of the ‘Take Back Your Temple’ ebook
http://www.takebackyourtemple.com/book

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Comments

  1. says

    This was an amazing article, summarized what has been going on in my head lately. The verses should be written on our hearts so we can whip them out in times of temptation.

    Thank you for this article!

    -Amy

  2. Carole Enmark says

    In this morning’s devotional from Joy and Strength, the scripture was Mary telling God to do as He wished with His handmaiden. The commentary fit your wise topic:
    “WE can see plainly how her ready self-surrender in faith, in trust, to her unknown, her mysterious destiny; how her instant expression of entire self-oblation to the Divine Will, to all that she was called to be and to do, to bear all that might in the future be required of her, is a constant witness of the mind that ought to animate and pervade the whole action of the soul. Life, if true, should be always the offering up of what we are, to do our best for Him who has called us. The responsibilities, the ventures, the conscious obligations which press on the soul, with all their conditions and unknown possibilities, supply the question that is to be solved; but the true response is the result of a habit formed through countless, nameless acts of conscientious obedience, which by use have become the bright and cheerful exercise of the one purpose of giving its best and purest to One most fully loved.
    T. T. CARTER
    This may be too long for the comments, so feel free to cut. Thank you again Kim, for your wisdom and commitment to truth–be blessed by our King today.

  3. Glenda says

    Hi Kim,

    You know I always love reading your blog and articles because they contain so much truth. I agree with pretty much everything you said. I know God says it
    is His desire that we prosper and be in health even as our soul prospers. So for me this speaks to the issue of emotional overeating. Emotions fall in the soul realm. So what I think is that God wants us to prosper in every way and that begins by dealing with what is in our souls hindering us from progressing in our weight loss and other health issues. Sometimes, I pray for soul prosperity because until we/I deal with the root we will not be able to progress as GOd desires , having all things and lacking nothing in any area of our lives.

    So here you’ve given me some things to take back in prayer and think about as you always do. I appreciate your constant encouragement and help given through these articles.

  4. says

    What a wonderful, edifying article with lots of powerful points for us to pray over & apply!
    Most of all, I appreciate how you base your teaching on God’s precious Word, & not on the (foolish & limited) wisdom of men.
    He knows our hearts, our every need, & what needs to be accomplished in our lives to prepare us to be ready & able to fully lay down every aspect of our lives for Him & His Kingdom…this is what He’s drawn me to focus on as I learn to crucify my flesh daily in these areas, & re-gain the health I lost through neglecting to present my body to Him DAILY as a living sacrifice!
    The joy of the Lord really is our strength! He’s enabling me to heal through showing me the multitude of benefits found in only eating the things He created for food, & in seeking Him daily for direction, & He’s used your wonderful teachings many, many times to direct my path, so I just wanted to thank-you for allowing Him to use you in such a needed way in the body of Christ! May He richly bless you for your service to Him & His people.

  5. Kathy-Anne says

    In the context of the Word that has been used to answer the question, they were approriate. God cares about everything that we care about – nothing is omitted or eliminated. It is in light of how much that “thing’ governs our lives. Whether it’s weight, career or family, God cares about it. The image that we see in the mirror is not the same image that God sees, He sees us with eyes that neither belong to the world, nor our eyes. His ways are not our ways. The world has attempted all kinds of behavioural solutions to weight loss – shame and guilt, will power vs self-control, but as Christians, just as God works in every individual’s life to work and to will as He sees fit, so too with weight loss or weight gain. They are alot of issues that are hidden in weight – child abuse, rejection and disapointment, brokenness, etc.
    Sometimes coming into the Kingdom will unearth those issues because He wants us to prosper in health, soul and spirit – He is all-inclusive. Some of us will need deliverance.

    The one scripture that I think that you neglected to mention – ‘the tongue who can tame it. ‘ We hear that scripture and immediately we think of what we say, but our tastebuds sit on our tongues. As an e.g, I see parents participating in behaviors with their children that will produce unhealthy fruit – associated eating. As a reward for a good grade, good behavior, as a treat, they take their children to a fast food restaurant. That mind becomes conditioned to associate food and reward. That tongue is hard to tame, becasue it is not disconnected from the mind. 99% of the way we eat is fueled by associated eating. When we want to relax we don’t book an appointment for a spa or curl up with a good book and turn off the phone, we look for apple pie and ice-cream. What the world calls comfort food. I refuse to call it comfort food. It brings me absolutely no comfort.

    As a Christian, one of the fruits of the Spirit is self-control. I learned how to manage my environment – the Holy Spirit helped me to get rid of friends who did not have the same interest, such as going to the gym, not eating fast food. Ultimately it’s like when you are a new believer, there are somethings God will take away from you and some things we must take personal responsibility for. We should not buy into the hype of six minutes, twice a week exercise claims.

    My weightloss journey started before I became a Christian, and the same discipline that is necessary to walk in this world in righteousness is the same discipline that I call on to stay the course. Being a Christian is not something that we can try, like a diet, if that does not work, we can try something else. A desire to be healthy sets you apart, the same way that being a Christian does. It’s not every morning that I want to work out, nor every Sunday do I want to go to church. But I do it, ny discipline is fueled by my desire – to be healthy, not to spend alot of money on clothes (because they get too small) and stick to a food budget.

    Just like I meet God in church I’ve also met God in the gym. Cardio can be so boring – I use that time to worship and to meditate. I’ve received a lot of revelation and insight while at the gym – I use it as my time with God – I don’t talk while I’m working out. Nine out of ten times the Holy Spirit ministers to me.

    A weight loss journey, and that is what it is takes commitment, we live in age where that word has lost it’s meaning. The most difficult promise to keep are the ones that we make to ourselves. We’re not walking alone in this journey, He is with us. We’re called to persevere and endure – in all things. Rule “1, never give up, rule #2 always remenber rule #1.

  6. says

    Hi Kimberly,
    Wow! I was so blessed by the your article on Does Care About Your Weight. I have been challenged for quite a while and most recently learned that I am an emotional eater…I had no idea!! I am so excited about your website and the information you have provided to help us on this journey. I NEVER concerned using the Word of God to help me and I’ve been involved in some Christian Weight Loss programs. You have presented a totally different approach and I cannot wait to see what is going to happen.

    Bless you for giving of yourself in this way to help people like me. You know, it really is a matter of life and death when it comes to obesity and not taking care of our bodies. I also love that you don’t sound lika “know it all” but you present the information in such a loving and compassionate way that it really draws me in to learn more. Bless you and I will be praying as God opens doors for you in this area!

  7. says

    You’ve inspired me, & got me thinking, praying, pondering…& writing…
    just led to return & share it with whoever’s meant to read it…
    (I’m 60+ lbs down from my highest weight so far, by God’s grace, overcoming numerous health issues & pressing on daily..)
    http://rawstoration.blogspot.com/2010/03/how-does-god-see-my-obesity-my-ongoing.html

    Love your site, nice to be back & finally have time to check it out further!I’ve linked to this article on Facebook, & know it will bless many!

    • kimf says

      Great comments! Thanks to everyone who has responded so far. Keep ‘em coming…

      Amy – I really appreciate your compliments, giving all glory to God. He teaches me something new every day and I’m grateful for it.

      Carole – This is an awesome, powerful word. I had to smile though at your comment “This may be too long for the comments”. Given how long the article was, you should know that long comments are not a problem for me :)

      Glenda – Something you said in your comment really stuck with me: “Sometimes, I pray for soul prosperity because until we/I deal with the root we will not be able to progress as GOd desires, having all things and lacking nothing in any area of our lives.” Amen, and amen, Sister! We get so distracted by the trivial things in life that we don’t leave ourselves time to deal with those deeper issues that keep us from having the abundant life that is our inheritance.

      Anastazia – Yes, the joy of the Lord is our strength and I can tell that you are full of the joy of the Lord. It’s awesome, isn’t it? I appreciate you for noting that the TBYT teaching is based on God’s word. I wouldn’t have it any other way because I know that dietary fads come and go but God’s word will stand forever. You also point out how important it is to present you body daily as a living sacrifice. VERY important scripture and a principle I myself continue to be tutored on :)

      I read your post at Rawstoration (cool name by the way) and will be heading over there to comment but you said something I never thought of before about our glorified bodies. Excellent post and I urge anyone reading this to head over to Anastazia’s blog to see what she has to say on this subject. Thanks so much for sharing my link with your Facebook friends as well. I really appreciate it!

      Nancy – So happy to help. It’s amazing how God always sends the right words at the right time :)

      Kathy-Anne – I was blown away by your post and nodding my head as I read it. So much wisdom in it. Excellent point about the tongue! It is so funny because I was meditating on another scripture related to that I have never noticed before in Psalm 141:3-4

      “Set a guard, O LORD, over my mouth; Keep watch over the door of my lips. Do not incline my heart to any evil thing, to practice wicked works with men who work iniquity; And do not let me eat of their delicacies.”

      Even King David prayed about what he ate!

      Like you said, managing your environment is extremely important. So much of the eating we do is mindless – simply eating just because the food is there. I contend that weight management is really a life management issue. You have to decide what is important to you and then plan your day so that you make time for those things that are a priority. And you are so right…it makes things a lot easier when you are around people who share the same passion for health…and harder when you aren’t. One of my goals is to build up TBYT into a community of people who are focused on health from a Christian perspective and can support each other on our journey. Thank you for sharing!

      Christine – Welcome to the club – as you’ve discovered I was an emotional eater too! Yep, the word of God is the most powerful weapon you can use because with emotional eating comes a mental stronghold that you will need to tear down, choice by choice. And once you do, you can’t leave the space empty. You need to fill the space with God’s word. His word brings life.

      Yes, I agree that obesity is a matter of life and death. Unfortunately so many people try to get rid of the excess weight in unhealthy ways, never dealing with the issues that caused the problem in the first place. But God is a healer and will heal both physical and emotional wounds if you let him. God bless you on your new journey :)

  8. Shay says

    This was truly some inspiring information. I am just totally blown away on the article that was written. My favorite part is how you explain what each scripture means. I believe most of the time we read these scriptures but really cant interpret what they really mean. So thanks so much for making it plain. I too believe that God doesn’t care about our weight, and God loves us unconditionally. However, I am a firm believer that he does want us to be healthy, thats why there are scriptures pertaining to gluttony and our bodies being a temple. I use to think that I was treating my body good because I didn’t smoke cigarettes, drugs, or drink alcohol. But I am learning that continuing to overload my body with unhealthy foods and unlimited amounts of food can also be critical to my temple and my health. If we begin to truly look at our bodies as a temple when it comes to eating, I believe alot of the health realted illnesses can be avoided. I am so blessed to have found this website last night. God truly does answer prayers, I had been feeling so depressed that thoughts of sucicide had crossed my mind. So thanks so much again Kim for your wisdom, courage, and strength. May God continuously bless you. And keep me in your prayers:)

    • kimf says

      Hi Shay (((HUG))), I am so humbled by what you said. And I am blessed that God gave me TBYT so that I can be His instrument in helping others with this issue. Yes, I do believe that God wants us to be healthy and there is enough evidence out there now that clearly says that eating food as close as possible to the way God made it is the best thing we can do for our health and well-being. God can give us the wisdom and strength to make better choices, day by day. But we have to be willing to not only find the information but apply it so that our lives are changed for the better. Shayla, I have prayed for Ephesians 3:14-21 for you:

      For this reason I bow my knees to the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, from whom the whole family in heaven and earth is named, that He would grant you, according to the riches of His glory, to be strengthened with might through His Spirit in the inner man, that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith; that you, being rooted and grounded in love, may be able to comprehend with all the saints what is the width and length and depth and height—to know the love of Christ which passes knowledge; that you may be filled with all the fullness of God.
      Now to Him who is able to do exceedingly abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that works in us, to Him be glory in the church by Christ Jesus to all generations, forever and ever. Amen.

      And never forget that God has promised to never leave you nor forsake you. His grace is sufficient to help you in overcoming any obstacle!

  9. J J C says

    This is a very well written article. I think it’s right on in truths and the fact that a body is just the soul manifesting fruits of the flesh and voids in the soul that only the Lord can heal. I really appreciate your interpretation and use of scripture.

  10. T says

    Hi there, I’ve had a weight problem for suuuuuuuuuuuuuuuch a long time and I’m so ready to be delivered from it!!!! I’ve just printed some of the scriptures you provided (as well as some of your other information) which I hope to get into it tonight. Will keep you posted.

    • kimf says

      JJC - I appreciate your compliments on the article. You are right, only God can heal voids in the soul. Many people try to fill voids with addictions, whether it is food, alcohol, drugs, sex, or any number of things. It’s like trying fill a hole without a bottom, only this hole gets deeper the more false comforts you put into it. But when you seek the true healer and comforter, the hole is filled and wholeness is restored!

      NJJ – Thank you – That is one of my favorite scriptures and one we can never hear enough of or meditate on.

      T – Yep, you have to reach that point where it is no longer “I should change” or “It would be nice to change” but “I must change.” An intolerable situation will exist in your life as long as you are wiling to tolerate it. I am glad that you are ready to be delivered. With consistent, focused action, deliverance is yours! I can’t wait to hear your success story!

  11. Sarah says

    Thanks for this article. I remember asking you this question on FB. this gives a balanced view to weight loss. Its about self control and surrendering to God. And its a process. God Loves us and would not want us to be robbed of his best for us.

    • kimf says

      Hi Sarah (((HUG)),

      Yes…now see what you’ve started? Seriously, I couldn’t get your questions out of my mind and I figured other people would have them too, so I figured I might as well tackle them here. I really appreciate you for asking them and I agree with your comment completely. I hope this information sets a lot of people free!

      Kim

  12. Christy says

    YES!! I love this article, thank you very much. I completely understand what you are saying about my body being the servant. I am in control, working for God therefore I CAN do it!! :)

    • kimf says

      Hi Christy! I love your enthusiasm and appreciate your compliments. Yes, you can do everything that God calls you to do through Jesus. Abundant life is yours…so go get it!

  13. says

    Interesting things to consider. I am definitely an overweight man and I’ve been that way since maybe 3rd grade. As I’ve been learning more about God and became a Christian, I have been noticing my sinful nature more and I’ve been realizing although gluttony is one of my many sins, much of the others could be lumped into the same catagory of lacking self control. I really don’t want to be a stumbling block for others to know of Christ, it’s bad enough when I don’t always say the wrong thing. Keeping this and personal reflection in mind, I may have to do something drastic in order to be a better witness. I just need to gain the confidence and rid myself of the inner coward. Thanks for the insight and let me know if you have any tips for a long time fatty / coward.

    • kimf says

      Hi Ben,

      Wow. Your post really saddens me. So much condemnation in your words about yourself – calling yourself “fatty” and “coward”. Brother, you are insulting the one whom God has created! Before you can even change your outside, your mind must be renewed to the truth of what God says about you.

      Nowhere in the bible do I see God condemning a person for being overweight – and certainly God did not call anyone “fatty!” In fact, there are only two instances in the bible that I know about in which a person was described as a fat person. One of them, Eli, was God’s priest. God did not rebuke him for being heavy – he rebuked him for allowing his sons to dishonor God in their temple service. See – God always deals with us at the heart level – regardless of what we look like on the outside. The religious people of Jesus’ day looked good but their hearts were far from God. Jesus described them as “white-washed tombs full of dead men’s bones” (Matthew 23:27).

      Ben, for many years I put myself down like you are doing. I started when I was 12 – calling myself fat even though in hindsight I wasn’t. Now I know how powerful words are. Eventually “fat” became my mental identity and then it became my physical reality.

      I had to learn to love myself at the size I was – before I even lost a pound. I had to renew my mind to what God says about me first. God commands us to love our neighbors as ourselves. That word “as” is important – to me, it means that God expects us to love ourselves. Furthermore, it means that our love of others will be limited if we cannot even love ourselves!

      Whew – breathe Kim. Breathe.

      Here’s what I want you to do the next time you find yourself calling yourself “fatty” or “coward”. Memorize these scriptures and use them to combat those lies. Jesus resisted the devil’s temptations with God’s word and that is how you will win the battle in your mind as well:

      Psalm 139:14
      “I will praise You, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made; Marvelous are Your works, And that my soul knows very well.”

      2 Samuel 22:33-35
      “God is my strength and power,
      And He makes my way perfect.

      He makes my feet like the feet of deer,
      And sets me on my high places.

      He teaches my hands to make war,
      So that my arms can bend a bow of bronze.”

      My prayer for you is this: That each and every day God reveals to you what it means to be a true son of God as you are led by his holy Spirit in the decisions you make. That you gain the ability to cry out to him “Abba, Father!” For as Galatians 4:6 says, “Because you are sons, God sent the Spirit of his Son into our hearts, the Spirit who calls out, “Abba, Father.”

      That right thinking according to the bible will lead to right believing and right living. That you grow in the fruits of God’s spirit – love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self control. For it is only in sharing this fruit with others that they will have the desire to taste and see that the Lord is good.

      This is what God desires – beauty that begins in the heart and outwardly expressed in glorifying him!

  14. Erin says

    Sister, Thanks for your website! I am collecting a set of tools to help my wonderful husband as he begins his journey toward the healthy body that God intends for him- already your website has been a great resource! The best part is that it is rich with scripture and founded in Biblical truth. Love it!

  15. says

    Hi Kim,
    This is such a timely word. I love what you told Ben about the mind being renewed before the physical body changes. That is such a strong truth and is the path to true freedom! No diet will do that which is what I tell my clients all the time. Diets keep you in bondage. Changing on the inside first and then watching in freedom as the outside changes is God’s plan for us. Oh, and the scripture about being fearfully and wonderfully made? I’ve been known to “make” my clients quote that to me when they start beating themselves up! lol…I tell them they’re not allowed to talk about themselves that way. It’s become almost a fun moment with us now because they’ll say something about themselves and then say, “uh oh, now I’ve got to quote that scripture”!

  16. Shandra Clark says

    Reading this article has been an incredible way to start my morning and my new beginning. I look in the mirror everyday and see ugliness, but you have reinforced the beauty that God sees. I am extremely interested in doing mission work and was scared that I was too flat to fly. Of course that was the devil’s wasy of trying to keep me stationary, but I wasn’t too flat to fly and I am craving more mission work. Something that I did learn is that I need to regain my health to be fully effective and what better day to start than today! Thankd you for your Biblical encouragement.

  17. Pauletta says

    Thank you for this wonderful article. I am inspired to exercise my faith, my patience, and my self control. I’ve been so tired of the condition I am in, and God used this article to realign my focus. I don’t feel ashamed or disappointed; yet, I feel rejuvinated and set free. Thank you for being obedient to God and letting him use you to help others.

  18. Kathleen says

    Hello..I was calling out to God this morning over this issue. I have been on fasts..40 days once..but I had a spiritual goal for staying the course. I haven’t been able to do anything close ever since the completion of it. I called out to him to change me..give me something to look at for a goal..a reason to get there..something to hang onto to help me keep going. The scripture..knife to the throat came to mind..and the one that ….food is deceptive. I felt that he told me to go look it up on the pute :) I clicked on your link and read this. Thank you very much for this article. It is so complete with all the teachings I have ever had on the subject. I have even had training as a nutritional therapist. All the learning came together with the scriptural to show me the way. The way to cut through all the thoughs and feelings to begin again. I even had a doctor tell me that I would lose it “naturally”. This article helped me to put all that I know into place to know that I can begin again and know that I will get there this time :) Thank you for the perfect way this was written for me.

  19. Sarà says

    Dear Kimberly i write you from Italy your words give me strenght becouse i’m passing trough a bad bad period i appreciate so mutch God bless you in your ministry Sara

  20. says

    Hi Kim what a blessing this article is to me. I’ve struggled with the ups and downs of being overweight and I’m quite tired of it. I will take what you’ve written and run with it. Again thank you…..

  21. Mark says

    Love your article and the responses.
    God has been showing me lately how important it is to start with your heart first then actions.
    Your heart being how you view yourself or more importantly how God views you in Christ. I loved how you took something theoretical like our identity in Christ and made it practical to something that so many people struggle with their weight. Beautifully said you have to renew your mind first before you get physical changes that stay long term. Keep up the good work of sharing our identity in Christ with others you truly our a bright light shining in a mixed up darkened confused world.
    May the Lord continue to use you as a shining light
    Mark

  22. says

    Hi Kim!

    Thank you for the article. I enjoy reading everyones feedback going back and forth in the comments. This article totally brings home the point that you your body truly is your temple.

  23. kiki says

    Dear sister, I praise God for you! I am so thankfulf for the wisdom and heavenly knwoledge that you have imparted.. it is a blessing from above and I feel so encouraged not to feel guilty anymore but pursue God’s welcoming kove and grace..
    and i am so happy to hear again that God cares for what is weighing down my heart..
    Much Love and Peace in Christ I send to you

  24. Hello says

    Several months ago, I realized my weight problems were an outward manifestation of my heart. It is mental. Now, I’m trying to lose weight. However, I still feel discouraged, everyday. I think to myself, that loosing 100 pounds is not going to help you. You’ll still be the same old you. But something keeps telling me to go on. Because I feel like once I get to the root of this problem, it well help me deal with other problems. I’m not just trying to lose the weight, I am trying to lose the problems that make me gain the weight.

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