Disqualified!I am seeing far too many who through their lifestyles are being disqualified from future service and goals. Many of you are getting older and the consequences of choices have turned into addictions (maybe addictions is too strong of a word and for you is reserved for substances of a more nefarious nature). But one of the most damning substances (using the word damn in it's literal sense of stopping progression or movement), is processed sugar. The most obvious culprit is the liquid candy called soda pop, but sugars including the artificial zero or reduced calorie ones are killing you. But not outright, one organ or joint at a time.
I have often said, when I die, I want to die all at once, not one part at a time. Diabetes, kidney disease, heart disease, many types arthritis are all examples of dying one part at a time.
Sadly as the years roll on our health can gradually deteriorate until systems begin to hiccup and run less smoothly.
The challenge of course is change. When it comes to food, people like to eat (and drink) what they like to eat, because that is what they like. Whether it is because of the caffeine that gives them a boost or the sweet taste of sugar, these addictions can have a hold not only on the body but on the spirit.
Willpower alone is rarely sufficient in freeing ourselves from the grasp of addictions. (Oops, I used that word again - okay, you're not addicted you just really like the taste and could give it up any time if you wanted - yeah, we understand - wink - wink).
What I have found is that to truly break free and turn your health around, you may need to reframe your perspective and intent. This is where the principle of sacrifice comes in. In baseball, when you've got a player on third base eager to score the winning run, the player at bat is more than willing to sacrifice himself by hitting a pop fly into the outfield allowing the third base runner to tag up and score. Was it really a sacrifice the batter made if the end result was winning the game?
So here's my point, when we make changes by sacrificing what we are currently doing, often we will experience far greater benefits in the grand scheme of things.
Here's what I may suggest. In ancient times, people would build an alter and sacrifice (often a prized animal) demonstrating to God their willingness to both trust and obey. We likewise can metaphorically place our sacrifice our will or physical desires to God as an offering and show of our faith and trust that by giving up something that appeals to our physical body, we can reap benefits that are far greater in the big picture of our life - namely health and vitality that will allow a brighter future.
I promise that if you take your health issues (and the vast majority are of our own doing) and sacrifice to God our agency or will, we can receive his grace and strengthening power that can help withstand the temptations and give us insight and foresight to ward off what would normally cause our sinking back into self-destructive patterns.
By turning your health challenges into a spiritual endeavor (which is what it really is any way), we can draw upon our faith and spiritual commitment to garner strength to overcome our unhealthy tendencies.
I fear that too many may be disqualifying themselves from their dreams and anticipated futures because they have fallen victims to their taste buds. But as with all sacrifices, by giving up and giving away those things which may be holding us back, we can become in line to receive a gift that is of far greater worth than the temporary fix we get from our vices.
Dr. Kyle Christensen