I’m overweight. Yep, I’m overweight by about 45-50 pounds, and I’m not happy about it. While I do battle a few chronic illnesses that keep me in bed, and I take a medication that is known to add about 10 pounds to a patient, I truly cannot look myself in the eye in the mirror and see a single excuse for my being overweight. Sure, there are several reasons, but no excuses.
The question I pose to myself today is this: am I going to be a Lazy Complainer or a Diligent Pursuer of slimming down my body? As far as I know, I do not have a genetic condition that makes losing weight almost impossible or requires major medical intervention (which some people DO have, and my heart empathizes for them).
If I am going to change from being a Lazy Complainer into a Diligent Pursuer, there are some specific things that I need to purposefully and passionately do:
FIRST: To begin, I’m going to engage in PRAYER, asking for God’s help.
“You desire but do not have… You do not have because you do not ask God.”
~ James 4:2
SECOND: I am going to begin a deliberate ANTICIPATION of God answering my prayer by helping me.
“But when you ask, you must believe and not doubt, because the one who doubts is like a wave of the sea, blown and tossed by the wind.”
~ James 1:6
THIRD: I’ll need His help with WISDOM for the “HOW-TO”
“If any of you lacks wisdom, you should ask God, Who gives generously to all without finding fault, and it will be given to you.”
~ James 1:5
FOURTH: I’ll need His help with SELF-DISCIPLINE for the “JUST DO IT” aspect.
“Watch and pray so that you will not fall into temptation. The spirit is willing, but the flesh is weak.”
~ Matthew 26:41
Losing some weight is just one of several areas in my life where I want to become a Diligent Pursuer. It is going to involve prayer (asking of God), faith (anticipation that God WILL help me as I continuously pray and ask Him), and deliberate actions consistent with my goals.
What about you? Do you have some areas of your life that you find yourself being a Lazy Complainer, but you really need and want to become a Diligent Pursuer? Well, your victory at the Finish Line awaits you to run your race! “Run in such a way as to win” (1 Corinthians 9:24) Diligently take EVERY step necessary to reaching the Finish Line. The steps I outlined earlier for my own race with weight loss will be a great starting point for you.
HEALTH & MEDICAL.
Do you have a health challenge that is just waiting for you to “run the race in such a way as to win?” Regardless of how impossible it might be for a human resolution of your health issues, and regardless of how weak your self-discipline has been, cry out to God EVERYDAY! He loves to hear from His children when we have a need or desire, great or small.
Let’s remember the words of Jesus:
“Jesus looked at them and said, ‘With man this is impossible, but not with God; all things are possible with God.’”
~ Mark 10:27
MARRIAGE & RELATIONSHIP.
Do you have a marriage that you wish was emotionally intimate and supportive? Every marriage requires BOTH spouses to diligently pursue the same goal, but far too often the one who wants it the most (who is complaining the most) is not doing and being everything that is necessary for that rich relationship to become a reality. The Lazy Complainer strategy has been employed instead of their becoming the Diligent Pursuer, and their spouse is blamed for not being a Diligent Pursuer.
Sadly, some individuals will NEVER have their desired emotionally intimate marriage, not because of their spouse’s faults but because of their own actions. Their own actions are incompatible with what they say they want. God Himself is a Diligent Pursuer, He took great sacrificial steps toward us before we ever eventually responded, and we are called upon to do the same for one another:
“This is how God showed His love among us: He sent His one and only Son into the world that we might live through Him. This is love: not that we loved God, but that He loved us and sent His Son as an atoning sacrifice for our sins. Dear friends, since God so loved us, we also ought to love one another.”
~ 1 John 4:9-11
The most important start to having your prayers heard and answered regarding marriage is to engage today in being considerate and respectful of your spouse, regardless if they are inconsiderate or disrespectful.
“Husbands, in the same way be considerate as you live with your wives, and treat them with respect as the weaker partner and as heirs with you of the gracious gift of life, so that nothing will hinder your prayers.”
~ 1 Peter 3:7
CAREER & WORK.
Do you have a job or career where you wish you would be promoted or assigned a special project, but it’s just not happening? The question to ask yourself is this: “Am I a Lazy Complainer or a Diligent Pursuer?” Rarely can a job be done well without great effort. Early in the book of Genesis, we are instructed that work will require “the sweat of the brow” which speaks of great, continuos effort.
My wife does mentoring of workers in various settings, and she warns them to guard against becoming “lost to mediocrity.” This wisdom is pure gold. A person who is swallowed up in the quicksand of being a mediocre employee, manager, or executive will also be a Lazy Complainer; they will become distracted during their race and they will never finish their race, much less finish their race well as a winner.
Of course, there are plenty of situations in life where we might already be Diligent Pursuers and we encounter others who are blocking the race track. However, we should avoid the blaming of others for being obstacles. Remember, God is the God of the impossible. We need to be Diligent Pursuers who pray, asking the Lord for His help with the impossible, and listening to Him for His guidance, wisdom, and insights.
THE MOST IMPORTANT THINGS
Who knows, God may have arranged your encounter with a certain person who is an obstacle, not so you can run over them or “rebuke” them for being a Lazy Complainer or a purveyor of mediocrity, but so you can help pick them up, mentor them, and run with them for a while. Let’s not forget that God and people are far more important than the immediate achievement of our goals. We CAN finish the race while lovingly helping and mentoring others to finish their race too.
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