Health and Fitness: Fearfully and Wonderfully Made – Transformation

We recently discussed the importance of taking care of our bodies and today we’ll discuss renewing our minds.

Cyndi - Before3. A third lesson I have learned is that my transformation would be accomplished by the “renewing of [my] mind” (Romans 12:2).

“And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what is that good and acceptable and perfect will of God.” Romans 12:2

In regard to how I treated the God-given gift that is the human body, I had conformed to this world—the American culture, where 66 percent are overweight, with 33 percent being obese. When a person sets out to lose 100+ pounds, there is no doubt about it—they are wanting transformation. But I knew that I had failed miserably over and over again when trying to lose weight in the past. I knew I could never be transformed by my own power, and God showed me that even the help of Weight Watchers wouldn’t be enough. If I wanted transformation—lasting change from the inside out—then I needed the Romans 12:2 kind of transformation. There the Spirit of God tells us to “be transformed by the renewing of your mind.” This implies that transformation does not occur merely by an act of God. It requires personal effort—the effort to “renew the mind.” Obviously, over the years I had learned and accepted the lies of Satan in regard to my body. What I had to do was educate my mind, renew my mind about how God designed this body to use food and the best way to feed, exercise, and treat the body. As I educated myself and practiced what I learned, I have indeed transformed my relationship with my body, God’s gift to me.

In addition to learning about the care and feeding of the human body, mostly from Weight Watchers, I have also renewed my mind directly through God’s word. There are several passages that either directly talk about the body and/or food, or can be easily applied to it. The following passages have worked to transform me, and as Romans 12:1 says, prove that the will of God is good and acceptable and perfect.

From 1 Corinthians 6:13 and Philippians 3:19 I have learned anew that “food is for the stomach” and that I can make my belly a god.

Philippians 1:20 has taught me that I should live like Paul so that “I shall not be put to shame in anything,” but that Christ should “always be exalted in my body.” I looked in the mirror and knew that my self-abused body did not honor or exalt the Designer and Giver of life, and in this way worked to diminish Christ in the eyes of the world.

I Corinthians 10:31, which says, “Whatever you eat or drink, or whatever you do, do all to the glory of God,” drove it home to me that how I relate to food can glorify God—or not.

Romans 14:15-17 vividly and boldly reminds me of the importance of paying attention to what and how much I eat, as it commands: “Do not destroy with your food him for whom Christ died.”

With the renewing of my mind has come a transformation evident in my physical body as well as my thinking. This Cyndi - Aftertransformation is evident in many small ways. Today:

  • I can get up from bed, a chair, the car, etc. without even thinking about it.
  • I can run up a flight of stairs.
  • I enjoy sweating from hard physical labor and exercise.
  • I am much stronger now.
  • I enjoy eating all kinds of vegetables now—even green beans.
  • I like cooking meals.
  • I choose to plant and tend a large vegetable garden.
  • I want to teach my children to care about nutrition and fitness.

In all of this I have proven to myself what the will of God is in regard to the body He gave me. It was designed to move with ease and work and accomplish what I desire to do physically. My other body couldn’t do those things and I had forgotten that part of the joy of life. It just causes me to glorify God.

Today I enjoy food, another gift from God, more than I ever have—because I eat a variety of it and really taste it. Today I can physically do what I never dreamed of doing before. I can do all this through Christ who strengthens me (Philippians 4:13). I give God the praise and glory for my weight loss. But I am not saying that God has worked a miracle in me. I have not lost weight supernaturally. My weight loss has occurred in direct proportion to the workings of the natural world—the ratio of calories into calories burned. Yet I know I have lost the weight because God has done His work in me as I confronted the truth: the way I treated my body dishonored Him and limited my ability to serve Him, and as I hid His Word in my heart He let it renew my mind and transform me.

For each of us, it is difficult to confront the truth about ourselves regarding the sins or other hindrances which keep us from fully serving God, from living the complete Christian life. Your encumbrance is likely completely different from mine—so let me encourage you to examine your life and see what it is that is holding you back in your spiritual service to God. When you are willing to lay that hindrance aside and move ahead in faith with God, then you can “be transformed by the renewing of your mind.” This will happen as you search out God’s Word and see what He has to say about your situation. What is His will for you as His creation, His child, His redeemed one. The information you need is in Scripture. Renew your mind by learning and taking on the mind of God, the mind of Christ, and in doing so you will prove to yourself and to the world just how good and acceptable and perfect the will of God is. And bring glory to His Name.

Psalm 139:14: I will give thanks to Thee, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made; Wonderful are Thy works, and my soul knows it very well.

By Cyndi Murphy

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