Today, I’m going to review the “I’m thinking about changing” stage and what it means.
At this stage, you’ve got 2 assets: You want to change and believe that you can change.
But the missing piece is that you haven’t decided that making the effort to change is worth it to you.
You are still considering it – and that’s a good thing!
Even Jesus advised that, before becoming His disciple, you must count the cost. He gave an example:
“For which of you, intending to build a tower, does not sit down first and count the cost, whether he has enough to finish it— lest, after he has laid the foundation, and is not able to finish, all who see it begin to mock him, saying, ‘This man began to build and was not able to finish’?– Luke 14:28-30
So to move up to the next level, you must prove to yourself that change is worth it.
You do this by making two cases: Why changing will benefit you and why you must make the change NOW.
The first case gives you motivation while the second gives you urgency. Let’s face it: Change can be hard. You need a strong reason to keep going when it gets hard.
You need to be able to tell yourself why it won’t be acceptable for you to quit.
Even if you are further up the ladder, I’d advise taking this step if you haven’t done it already. It will help strengthen your ability to finish what you start.
Typically, when deciding to make a healthy lifestyle change, you focus on temporal reasons like looking better in your clothes, increasing your energy, and improving your health. These are good reasons.
But I’m going to give you the most important reason and you’ve probably never thought about it.
I call it the ‘Bedrock reason’ because it’s the deepest reason you can have. Bedrock is the rock upon which the surface soil of this planet rests (area ‘C’ in the illustration).
The ‘Bedrock reason’ for changing goes all the way down to the meaning of life.
Author Viktor Frankl was a concentration camp survivor and wrote the classic book, “Man’s Search for Meaning.”
In the book, Frankl made the case that man can endure almost anything as long as he has hope and can find meaning in his life experience.
Now people of the world don’t know what the real meaning of life is, but we Christians should know it. Jesus tells us the meaning of life:
“And this is eternal life, that they may know You, the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom You have sent.”John 17:3
Wouldn’t you agree that getting to know God and Jesus Christ more through the experiences of your daily life is a stronger reason for making changes than looking good in a certain outfit?
Let me explain.
When I wanted to overcome the habit of gluttony, then I knew I needed help! I was suffering, killing myself with a knife and fork.
To be victorious, I had to humble myself, pray, seek the Lord’s face (presence), and turn from that destructive way.
His word promised that He would heal me if I did that (2 Chronicles 7:14). Through walking the path of wellness for nearly 15 years, I am so much stronger in the Lord.
I am grateful that I made the decision to believe God when He said that I could change – and allowed Him to walk me through it!
I realized that something as basic as changing the way I eat and exercise could be used as an opportunity to get to know my Lord better.
I could seek him through prayer and ask Him for his wisdom when I wasn’t sure what I should do. I could seek His comfort when my flesh felt like it was burning up from saying “No” to that 2nd helping when I knew my body didn’t need it.
With each small success, I could say with confidence and from experience: “Lord, you are FAITHFUL.”
This morning when meditating on this issue, the Lord brought to mind the story of the rich young ruler.
This man had youth, wealth, and power – all the things the world says we should want.
Yet, he still sought the Lord to ask how he could obtain eternal life (see Mark 10:17-22). So in spite of all that he had, he recognized that something was missing in His life and temporal things were not enough.
However, once Jesus gave him the answer, he decided that the cost was not worth it.
I imagine that the man went away emptier after encountering Jesus than he was before, simply because he did not recognize the value of the opportunity right in front of him!
When I read Jesus’ answer in Mark 10:21, I thought about how I could apply that to my life.
The core principle for me is to invest what God has given me into the lives of others and to follow Jesus in my daily life, to build a stronger relationship with Him.
My health habits are just a tool to do that. The energy and health I gain gives me the strength I need to operate in my ministry and to fulfill my God-given purpose.
I’ll end this post with a challenge: Get out a piece of paper and write at the top: “Why improving my health is important to me.” Underneath that, create two columns: Eternal Reasons, Temporal Reasons.
Under the Eternal Reasons column, think about why improving your health can be used as an opportunity to live out life’s true meaning, which is to come to know God and Jesus Christ.
Under this column, also write down how it can help you better operate in your Spiritual gifts and fulfill the Great Commission, which is to draw others to Christ.
In the Temporal Reasons column, you can write down the usual reasons that are important to you, such as looking better in your clothes, gaining energy, decreasing your risk of disease, better role model to your family, etc.
After you create your list, then take it to the Lord and pray Psalm 90:12: “So teach us to number our days, That we may gain a heart of wisdom.”
God can help you gain a sense of urgency as to why it’s important that you start this process now.
The downfall of many people is that they spend major time on minor things. Don’t waste your life obsessing over minor things.
Invest your life so that you can maximize your God-given resources to reap eternal rewards!
Be Blessed with health, healing, and wholeness,
Author of the Take Back Your Temple program
Each time I read ANYTHING you’ve written I am so very thankful to our LORD. It’s obvious that the wisdom you share came straight from Him and His word. Instantly it resonates with my soul.
Thank you for this article. You have a way of getting right to the heart of matters and in a way that speaks to me so clearly. Thank you for pointing out that everything I do is an opportunity to get to know Jesus better, for pointing out the bedrock reason for change. I’m off to now to do as you advised, creating the two lists.
My hope is growing day by day that I will be pursuing Christ as it relates to health through grace (to myself), prayer, praise, food, hydration, exercise, and all aspects of my life.
Praise God for this ministry He has given you! ✝️
Praising God with you for the changes in your life now, the changes to come, and the Lord be glorified.
As I read this teaching I realized that there is a spiritual side of why I even chose this program. Making new pathways in my thinking and doing it to get to know ABBA better on a daily basis is so much more than just losing the weight. There is an internal purpose and once I get this I know I will move up the ladder.
I believe you will, Rhonda 🙂
This is a great journal exercise! As I embark upon it, I pray for Honesty and Thoroughness!
This is my first day on the program, and i am very excited about this journey. I have to admit, I’ve been excited about staring other weight loss journeys, but this excitement knowing that God is directing my path is a different type of excitement, and with that comes a sense of joy and empowerment knowing that I am walking in God’s favor. I pray that I will be obedient, and i know the outcome will be pleasing to me and will honor God.
Amen, Beverly! Just remember – life is lived one day at a time and so is this journey. The Lord is walking with you every step. Even if you stumble, know that He already has the answer for you to overcome. We are here for you so don’t hesitate to reach out in the Community!
Why improving my health is important to me: Temporal reasons: take weight off my spine in hopes it will ease the pain in my vertabrae and nerves. Decrease chronic daily pain so that I can focus on the people God puts before me. Eternal reasons: optimize my temple now and forever 🙂 Renew my mind daily. Spiritual growth in the fruits ! Yes please!!
Amen, Jackie – may it be to you according to God’s word!
I’m so glad I went back and read this even though I thought I was at a further stage like 3 or 4. I love the practical advice and activities you give us to stay on track! Thank you again, Kimberly.
You are welcome, Carlyn – I am glad this is helpful to you!
I need and what to be a good steward for my family and for people that the Lord places in my life.
Investing in the Lord will maximize my God-Given Eternal Rewards. This is not of greed but because
the Love of my Father, His Gifts are Eternal……..
Amen, Elaine! That is a decision that I recommend you reinforce mentally each day because the more you do, the more it will become part of you. You’ll begin to make choices consistent with you new identity 🙂
It’s not that I doubt God can change me or anyone, my difficulty is believing that I will allow God to change me. It’s my willingness to listen that I pray against.
Hi Cyndi – I understand! Here is an article that I pray will help you discover what may be at the root of the willingness to listen and cooperate with the Holy Spirit in your change process: https://takebackyourtemple.com/confronting-the-lies-of-rebellion/
I can relate!
I can totally relate Cyndi!
Thank you for being here! My husband moved to heaven in June of 2018, just one week after his 65th birthday and only 3 weeks after my mom moved to her heavenly home. With these losses, l have dealt with many very stressful issues. I found my husband just about 5-10 minutes after the accident he had with farm equipment and he was already gone. It was very traumatic for me. I have seen a therapist concerning the trauma issue. I have paid off all the business and personal debt. Now l am dealing with issues concerning conditions of my house and finances as well as other distant relational issues. I do not sleep well, like a couple to three hours then awake for as many then maybe sleep again for a couple hours. The first 6 months after my husband’s promotion to heaven l lost 27 pounds—1 pound a week for 27 weeks. Slowly since January of 2019 l have gained back 17 of those pounds l lost. I crave sugary things;
the ongoing yeast overgrowth causes much of that. I have medication but it is still a struggle to deal with. I am a firm believer that God is willing to help me gain control of my eating as well as what is eating me but l need daily maybe moment by moment help. So very much in my life has been upended and many, many times l feel absolutely alone,,,which l know Jesus Christ is just a prayer away, but my husband was with me in an earthly body suit and l miss him terribly. I went through Grief Share classes which were helpful but I need a structured plan for getting into God’s Word to help me become who He has planned for me to be. Thank you for this opportunity.
Praying for you Linda. My mother became a widow in 2016 and I have been on this journey with her as the only child in the family. I understand what you are describing here. I also took my Mom to the GriefShare classes. Helpful, but, ongoing support and compassion are essential. You are not alone. Be blessed today. ~Dee
I would like to add Carol that you said in part… “God is the vine , and I am a mere branch.”
You are MUCH more than a “MERE” branch! You are a child of the MOST HIGH VINE with the ability to tap into the resources and nutrients in which He can supply.
To God be the Glory!
I really want to change. I’ve been wanting to change for what seems like forever, and it just wasn’t happening. But I have been praying for guidance, and although I have had to go through some lessons first, I believe my God is speaking louder or maybe he wanted me to go through lessons before I could be able to hear him. The message I have been hearing lately is to stop trying to change using my own self will. He is teaching me that I was not meant to do this on my own. I believe he is reminding me that I must rely on him to help me change. I need to let go of trying to have all the control and just surrender to him. I have to surrender it all to him, including the process of changing my ways. That is what lead me to this program. God is the vine , and I am a mere branch. He says “come to me all you who are heavy laden, my yoke is easy. Things which are impossible with men, are possible with God. So every day I am going to keep on praying, “God please change me.
Amen, Carol! The word says that our issues originate from the heart…and the Lord is the only one who can do that. Let’s walk with Him as He changes us from the inside out. God bless you 🙂
This was very helpful in showing me why it is important to decide to make the change. Like many of the others on this post, I have done many different kinds of ways to lose my weight. For me, what I struggle with is that in 2003, I did make a major life change and lost 35 pounds, had great energy, was walking everyday, and felt great-the problem was the kind of food I was eating–it was the same thing everyday–boring, bland and I got tired of eating practically the same thing everyday after a year. My blood sugar when this first happened was so out of whack that I had to stop even eating fruit for that entire year. What I did was great, but then I got to thinking that I would just love to eat something other than a protein shake, meat, vegetables and protein bars. Since that time, I have struggled, because I do not want to go back to that kind of eating. I vowed that I wanted to do things in balance and not go from one extreme to the other. I found Take Back Your Temple several years ago, however, due to my work schedule, I have been unable to actually get into the program. Since quarantine, I have been doing a lot of things that I had not done in a long time. Getting my weight off and having a new mindset are just two of the things I have started to want to change. I am looking forward to a different lifestyle and becoming the healthy person that God wants me to become.
Wow. So glad I took the time to read this and complete this exercise. Listing the eternal reasons for wanting to lose weight and live healthier was eye-opening for me. I had only focused on the temporal reasons before.
Having the bedrock reason of drawing closer to Christ is everything for me. I never thought of the two together before. My choices to live healthier causes me to lean and rely upon the Lord more and that alone will draw me closer to Him as I seek Him for wisdom, guidance and strength.
Kathy, thank you for this. I already know that TBYT is different than any other program that I’ve tried.
Also, ever since I watched your first video, I have prayed, “Lord, take back Your temple!” That prayer alone is so powerful. Wow.
Thank you, again. I am looking forward to this journey.
Wonderful, Regina! The process isn’t always easy but it is worth it and you will find that as you rely upon the Lord day by day and choice by choice. Glad to have you with us on the journey!
I’m scared! I’ve failed so many times with gluttony! I want to eat in a way that pleases God and not eat sinfully.
I have also realized this is the one area of my life, because of my failures, I cannot move forward with my eating issues without daily/constantly turning to God. I believe He is the only answer, and I am willing to make that commitment to spend daily time with Him. Spending time with God gives me so much peace, and I’m truly asking the Lord for direction and wisdom that only He can teach.
I’m praying that God will deliver each of us from our overeating, and the patience and wisdom to rely on Him. In Jesus’ name I pray. Amen
Please pray for me in this area! I’m struggling to fully trust God to lead me through all the emotional pain I face without stuffing it down with food!
Hi Pamela – I have prayed for you according to Psalm 147:3 – ”He heals the brokenhearted And binds up their wounds.” Jesus is the Balm of Gilead, the Great Physician. There is no wound that is too deep for Him to heal. The enemy keeps is trying to keep you in fear that you won’t be able to handle what happened in your past, so it’s best that you keep stuffing it down. But like a child who has a deep wound physically, the only way the would can heal properly is if they allow the medical professional to clear it up and dress the wound. It may be painful, but there is freedom on the other side and the only way to the abundant life Jesus died to give you. He rose again from the grave and so did you!
This was so helpful, Kimberly. I made the 2 columns and am going to pray over Psalm 90:12. Thank you for your wisdom!
You are so welcome Laura – God is so good for revealing these truths to us!
This site is exactly what I was looking for! Today is the day I have decided to make a lifestyle change and I wanted to be sure to have some real Christian guidance. It has taken me months to take this step but the past few weekends have been really “weighing heavy” on me. I make Sunday dinner for our family to get together each weekend and it consisted of bbq(of all types), sweet rice, macaroni cheese, etc, etc. I would make this huge plate of food and sit down to eat but inside I knew I should not be eating this much. I would wake up on Monday feeling so disgusting not only because I ate so much food but because I feel like I ignored the Spirit, maybe even vexed Him, by stuffing myself. For years I have tried to do shotgun diets and exercises from P90X to going straight to veggies and fish. I failed each time, I believe, because I didn’t use a process like the one being described here. I didn’t try to include God I just thought He would approve it. Using this process will allow me to listen to the Spirit as I write out my reasons why and then take it to God and get His direction and instruction. This is how it should be done! I have bookmarked this site and will visit here often. Thank you so so much!
I can so relate to Lee Ann, I have been facing similar situations and been doubting myself and basically given up even before trying yet again (many people who do not know me think I am pregnant-that’s how it is in terms of shape). I have felt so tired on the few occasions I tried to exercise that I think it has become a mental block to even start doing some. And knowing how lowly my spouse thinks of me in this regard doesn’t help too.
My head tells me God loves me, but somehow since the last 3-4 years, I find it harder and harder to appropriate this and sometimes even feel disbelief…to reach a healthy weight for my height means losing at least 60 -70 pounds and being in my mid 40s, it has been harder than before.
Dear Kim, may I ask that you pray with and for me to be to really love myself and take back my temple for Him and for His purpose. Deeply appreciate your inputs and sharing in your website and emails 🙂 God bless u every step of the way!
I tried reading the one about making plans to change and couldn’t get through the first paragraph! I don’t believe I can change! I have this mind (and heart) thing going on that change is possible for others but not for me. I don’t have what it takes to accomplish change. If I change, it won’t last because it never has in the past. OK, I take that last one back. . . I changed tremendously when I gave my heart and life to the Lord and those changes have lasted and held me steady these 35 years. It wasn’t something I tried, it just happened. God would speak, I would think on what He had said to me, sort things out and respond in obedience. It wasn’t something I did for myself or for anyone else but I just knew I couldn’t go on like I was and I asked God to make me what He wanted me to be. I had family fighting me on every issue and I was cussed and discussed and lied on and misunderstood and accused of so many things.
I wasn’t setting goals, working a plan, taking baby steps or following a program. It was just me and God talking things through and me trying to be obedient.
In my family and my husband’s family, everyone is way overweight or very skinny and do all these unhealthy and “fad” types of things to stay skinny. I have never seen this stuff worked out in another person’s life and I don’t know how to work toward a goal, accomplish it, give myself a reward for accomplishment. I don’t know how to take care of myself. I don’t know how to live a disciplined life. I have been living the Tyranny of the URGENT lifestyle but I want freedom from that. It is exhausting and not the least bit rewarding. I want to lose weight, but can’t make myself do the work to make it happen. I may lose 25 pounds in a year and then it is right back in a couple of months. I am a true type E woman Everything to Everybody Every Moment of Every Day Except when it comes to me. My wants and needs are overlooked and “put down” and when I do take time to nurture myself then the questions come from others: How much longer are you going to be doing that? Do you really have to do that now? When are you going to do this—don’t forget that this needs to be done. One year I wanted to do something specific to celebrate my birthday. Someone realized I was inviting people to help me celebrate my birthday, they decided it was just wrong and told everyone I was inviting how terrible it was. No one came and there was nothing fun done because others decided it was just wrong of me to invite people to help me celebrate my birthday in a way I wanted. I tried drawing boundaries and my family found that Threatening and got upset because I was unavailable to them when they would need me the most (of course they didn’t need me until I would take time for myself or do something to care for myself. When I worked toward a goal, accomplished it and I promised myself a reward, I would have to forego the reward or treat because of others and their needs, etc. That has made it even harder to work toward a goal, because the promised reward did not occur. I lost credibility with myself.
I WANT to make changes but I don’t have the stuff that it takes to make the changes. I can make a plan, I can’t WORK the plan. I can set a goal, maybe even work to it and accomplish it, but if I celebrate it in some way that I enjoy or get a feeling of accomplishment from, it is hastily put down by a very significant person in my life. My accomplishments have to be hidden. Since they have to be hidden, they must not be of value and therefore I am not of value. . I have allowed others to stomp on me so much through the years, that now I don’t have the self confidence or even the desire to do the work needed to make the changes I desperately want. I want to be seen for the person I really am, but I don’t even know who I am anymore because I have lost sight and contact with that person.
Yes, this is lengthy but the Box Title says Speak Your Mind
Boy, do I feel your pain in this post! I hear anger, frustration, victimization, and defeat. You say that you want to make changes, so I am going to trust that your word is true. If you supply the will, then God will supply the power. Do you believe in God’s power? I said this in another post, but I’ll say it again: “Remember, you serve the same God who parted the Red Sea, brought new life to barren wombs, helped His people defeat countless enemies, restored sight to blinded eyes, made the lame walk, and raised people from the dead! Surely He can help you with your eating problem.”
The key to your turnaround is found in your own words. You said, “I want to be seen for the person I really am, but I don’t even know who I am anymore because I have lost sight and contact with that person.”
You need to start with seeing yourself as God sees you. The daughter of a King, a princess. I recommend that you get out a piece of paper. Pray to the Lord and ask for Him to reveal to you the full truth of who you are in Christ. Then, read the following:
Once you’ve read these things, get your piece of paper and write a letter to the Lord about what you are feeling. Pour everything out to him on paper. He knows it anyway, but by writing to him about it, you indicate your trust in Him.
I recommend you bookmark the Hisprincess.com site and read one of the “princess” letters every day to renew your mind to how God sees you. It may take time, but in order to set boundaries with other people (which from your post you DESPERATELY need to do), you have to believe that you are valued and that your needs matter.
I would recommend laying aside your weight loss aspirations at the moment. Here is why: Losing weight is not about living a diet. It is about living your life. Often, excess weight is a symptom of a life out of balance.
Compulsive overeating, emotional eating, or other food addictions are all misguided ways to manage stress. The stress can come from your circumstances, relationships, or emotional issues. All of these are issues of the heart, not the body.
While eating wisely is critical, any weight you lose will come back if the heart issue isn’t addressed because you’ll likely run back to your old coping methods when you have a problem.
I discovered this in my own struggle to treat my body as a temple. But I learned two important lessons from the bible that helped.
First, I was surprised to learn that, even though building the temple was King’s David idea, God would not let him build it. Why? God said that David could not build the temple because he was a man of war and had shed much blood.
However, God said that would allow King David’s son, Solomon to build it. God said that Solomon could build it because he would be a man of rest and would have peace from his enemies on every side.
I believe that same principle is true today. To build healthy bodies, we must be people of rest – that is, we must shake off stress and learn to rest in God. We must trust that God will give us wisdom to take care of our bodies and empower us to do as He guides us. All we have to do is ask for His help. As the same time, we must have rest from our enemies. That means resolving conflicts promptly and pursuing peace with all men. There is no way you can build a temple when you are constantly at war with yourself and other people.
With rest and peace on your side, then you will be able to think clearly to make wise choices. So, Lee Ann you need to use a season to rest in the Lord and receive His love and healing from that hurt and anger. Once you gain inner peace, you can start the work of re-building God’s temple (your body), step by step. I’m praying for you.