Well, it is that dreaded time of the month again and HANG ON - where was the PMT?????? I have not had my normal melt down this time and am so stoked (last thing I needed in all this chaos) and very thankful to God also. The only indication I can see from looking at the past few days was being a bit tearful on Sunday arvo - but that was only after discovering hubby had put my brand new Country Road silk top through the washing machine - sniff!
I have found the Lord placing some healthy reminders in front of me lately too. I am so thrilled at the progress I've made and how well I'm doing, but it so easy to rest on MY laurels, and think I'M great when what it really comes down to, is God showing me amazing grace and giving me unbelievable strength (when I let Him). I had to laugh at a verse on a bookmark I got in the mail with my "Insight for Living" newsletter (Chuck Swindoll) yesterday - "For physical training (or bodily discipline) is of some value, but Godliness has value for all things, holding promise for both the present life and the life to come", 1 Tim 4:8.
Oh, how true it is! And what a timely reminder - it would be so easy to turn this diet/excercise/self-control thing into an obsession but seriously, in eternal value - where would it help me???? I don't believe this is at all saying not to be concerned about training and disciplining your body - exactly the opposite in fact (it is of some value!) but on it's own or as my first priority, it will not be what benefits me the most in my present life and the life to come. However, I do believe that in controlling what enters my mouth and what I do with my body, it does directly affect the attitude I have for God - without all those chemical and artificial interruptions in my system, I am seeing more joy in my life and being able to appreciate God's goodness and His words for me. I understand I may not always feel this way, but I'm relishing in soaking in God at the moment, and in strengthening my faith now, while I can, and to hold me strong for when (undoubtedly) those harder times hit.
The other thing that has been heavy on my heart is how to "repay" God for all His goodness. Yes, I know His love is not conditional but I know if this is a 2-way relationship, I need to understand what my love response should be to my amazing Creator and Saviour. I came across this passage while killing time one morning before heading off to the gym:
I love the Lord, for he heard my voice;
he heard my cry for mercy.
Because he turned his ear to me,
I will call on him as long as I live.
The cords of death entangled me, the anguish of the grave came upon me;
I was overcome by trouble and sorrow. (*I sure was!*)
Then I called on the name of the Lord: "O Lord, save me!"
The Lord is gracious and righteous; our God is full of compassion.
The Lord protects the simplehearted; when I was in great need, he saved me.
Be at rest once more, O my soul, for the Lord has been good to you.
For you O Lord have delivered my soul from death,
my eyes from tears, my feet from stumbling,
that I may walk before the Lord in the land of the living.
I believed; therefore I said, "I am greatly afflicted."
And in my dismay I said, "All men are liars".
How can I repay the Lord for all his goodness to me?
I will lift up the cup of salvation and call on the name of the Lord.
I will fulfill my vows to the Lord in the presence of all his people.
Precious in the sight of the Lord is the death of his saints.
O Lord, truly I am your servant; I am your servant, the son of your maidservant;
you have freed me from my chains.
I will sacrifice a thank offering to you and call on the name of the Lord.
I will fulfill my vows to the Lord in the presence of all his people,
in the courts of the house of the Lord - in your midst, O Jerusalem.
Praise the Lord.
Now, I am no great expositor, but I firmly believe in the Lord putting things on your heart as you read. And being so grateful to God, for saving me and hearing my cry for mercy, I will make known the message of salvation to those I know, who don't know of it. And I will try to fulfill my vows to God to make my family my most important ministry as well.
And that is what I hope you will pray for me, that I will continue to share this with everyone, especially at this amazing time of the year. I feel heartbroken when remembering Good Friday, but nothing beats the joy, amazement and thankfulness in celebrating Easter Sunday and the fact that we worship a risen and living Lord, not a dead cement statue!
Have a wonderful Easter!