I’m putting on my Sunday Best!

I would like to start out by saying that I am aware that it has almost been a week since I last posted an article and the reason for that is tied up in what I have been meditating on since I attended the Esther Prophetic Conference at NAGC this past weekend. Awesome awesome way to spend a weekend by the way.

I’ve been thinking a lot about how I started out wanting to just share topics that I find interesting and possibly having a discussion about them with a few girlfriends, but the more I wrote, the more I realized that it was impossible to separate my faith from whatever I wrote… From the abundance of the heart the issues of life flow and just like that, this became a “Christian Blog”.

I suppose it has a lot to do with how I spend my time, what I listen to, who I surround myself with, and I really hope you don’t mind me throwing in a scripture or two while discussing the latest fashion trends. I really can’t help myself.

I’ve been thinking a lot about my journey to the place I find myself in and its been a long winding road from when I was a little girl in itchy stockings and a chiffon fancy dress walking the dusty streets of Potchefstroom every Sunday morning with my grandmother on my way to a church with a loud bell at the entrance, wooden pews, stained glass windows and old hymnals.

A place where everybody acted like they were due for a rapture into heaven straight after the service, but instead as soon as they got back home after the service, it was like the clock struck midnight at Cinderella’s ball and the crystal carriage turned into a pumpkin again until next sunday.

It’s a wonderful “God bless you so and so” and “I’ll pray for sister so and so” charade most people don’t mind scheduling into their day at least once a week. A great reason to dress up and get emotional and go home feeling good routine most people repeat without even putting much thought into it.

But there’s some things I’ve realized recently.

1. The weekly cycle of putting on your Sunday Best and switching into your Monday Worst just hours later defeats the purpose of your Christ walk being more of a journey than a roundabout stroll in the same spot every week for the rest of your life. There needs to be progress. Hebrews 6:1states: ” So let us stop going over the basic teachings about Christ again and again. Let us go on instead and become mature in our understanding.”

2. Realize that a church is place where you are equipped to change circumstances, where you are trained to be effective. This is where you learn to master your gifts and calling. 1 Peter 4:10 states:
“Each one should use whatever gift he has received to serve others, faithfully administering God’s grace in its various forms.” So sitting back and enjoying the show clearly isn’t how we’re going to accomplish that.

3. Going to a church believing for a transformation in your life without realizing that it takes sowing your own life to transform the lives of your family members, your colleagues, your neighbor, and even the lives of complete strangers you meet along the way, then your life will most likely not be transformed until you realize and get started on that. Luke 4:18-19 states“The Spirit of the LORD is upon me,
for he has anointed me to bring Good News to the poor.
He has sent me to proclaim that captives will be released,
that the blind will see,
that the oppressed will be set free, 19 and that the time of the LORD’s favor has come.” Its about bringing a ray of hope to others and that same light will illuminate your own life.

I’m not claiming to have it all figured out but I’m looking at all that and I’m thinking we all need a bit of a make-over as church-folk. Some straightening out and some touch-ups on the inside out and maybe who we portray ourselves as on Sunday morning won’t be something we put on, but something we’re growing into truly being… Everyday. Now can I get a witness somebody!

My top 5 secrets to weight-loss!

I can’t even tell you how many times I’ve seen those words on an ad somewhere. Whether its some magical pill or potion, a rabbit food diet, some crazy contraption that gives you back pain just looking at it, some “its all in the mind” book, or a funky workout video where everybody in it has rock hard abs already, it’s pretty obvious that weight loss is a major issue in society. So major that according to a 2008 article on http://www.businessweek.com: “Like psychic readers and astrology hotlines, the weight loss industry sells hope to desperate people. Americans spend $40 Billion a year on weight loss programs and products alone.”

With questions like “honey, does my butt look big in these jeans?” being one of the questions that make grown men everywhere shudder in pure terror, it’s safe to say that it can be quite a touchy issue. Especially if the answer used to be a “no babe, you look lovely in those jeans”, but it gradually turned into a “yes, it really does and you might not want to wear those jeans anymore” – not that he’s likely to say that anyway.

But yes, carrying a little extra weight on your body can be quite a drag, but do you know what I think is an even bigger drag? Carrying emotional weight in your spirit over a dissatisfaction with yourself in general, about your past, about mistakes you’ve made, about people who did you wrong, about people who said things about you, about times when life seemed unfair, about a missed opportunity… And the list goes on… And on… And on…

So this isn’t really about how you can look like Twiggy…even I don’t look like her. But this is about how we all need to take a long hard look at ourselves and deal with all the baggage and issues we should have let go of, but instead we tie ourselves to it and live our lives around it.

You could be a runway model and still be carrying tons of extra weight that’s not only unattractive, but killing your joy, your peace, your health, your ability to give and receive love, your faith, and to make a long story short, its killing you slowly.

People make a big fuss over the weight they need to lose so they could fit into a particular outfit and not enough of a fuss about the sort of weight we all need to lose to ensure that we are able to fit securely into a relationship with someone without bursting into an “all men are dogs” rant as soon as something goes wrong, a friendship without bringing up how she did this and that to you last year, or even a relationship with God where you’re able to accept His mercy and grace and unconditional love with zero guilt and zero condemnation.

The top 5 secret weight-loss tips I mentioned in the title?

1. A mind-set makeover. If you’re carrying a lot of guilt and self-pity, keep this in mind: Psalm 65:3 “Though we are overwhelmed by our sins,
You forgive them ALL.” Not some, all are forgiven.

2. Stretch your forgiveness muscles. Colossians 3:13
“Make allowance for each other’s faults, and forgive anyone who offends you. Remember, the Lord forgave you, so you must forgive others.”

3. Recommended diet. Galatians 5:22 “But the Holy Spirit produces this kind of fruit in our lives: love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control.”

4. Work it out! James 2:17 “So you see, faith by itself isn’t enough. Unless it produces good deeds, it is dead and useless.” So do something for someone other than yours truly for a change and see all those self-absorbed issues and habits begin to fall away, because you’ll realize that the end of the world is never triggered by one person’s troubles.

Life is heavy enough without all the extra baggage we’re always carrying around over things we have no control over. In my opinion, there is nothing more Godgeous than someone who has shed all their insecurities, grudges and bitterness… Allowing them to be blameless… Shameless…and weightless…. What do you think?