Yesterday marked the third anniversary of attaining my goal weight. I have been in various states of maintenance ever since, hovering at this weight, trying not to obsess over it, sometimes going weeks or even more than a month without stepping on a scale. Such has been the case since April 2nd, when I arrived home from an overseas trip still at my goal weight. I guess I got a little relaxed with my measuring and weighing since then, maybe even a little cocky, but the scale revealed five pounds of creep had clawed its way onto my carcass. I like to think that, as much as I have been exercising, this weight might be muscle and therefore a good thing, but I have noticed my belt feeling a little tighter too, so I know this is not really the case. At any rate, I wouldn’t be honest if I didn’t share all the details, even the negative ones.

On that note, my spiritual fitness has taken a downturn with the onset of my status as a full-time student. I swear this workload must be for young kids, because the homework is killing me! In addition to that, I am still juggling regular adult life. I have a daily exercise program (except for Sundays) that includes a running meet on Tuesday, I have a Bible study on Wednesday, choir practice on Thursdays, two OA meetings a week (down from five), church on Sunday, an online Chemistry class, and an Economics class that meets on Tuesday and Thursday. Next week we will add an English Composition II class that also meets Tuesday and Thursday. On top of that, I am the one in the house who does laundry, grocery shopping, dishes, and all my own cooking. I’m tired just recalling this. If there is any wonder why I haven’t written regularly, there’s the explanation. I try to read some of the material that used to start my every day, including Food for Thought, Our Daily Bread, a New Testament in a Year entry, an occasional entry from Charles Spurgeon’s Morning and Evening, and I just started reading He Walks Among Us, a new devotional book I got, which was written by the director of World Vision and his wife, Rich and Reneé Stearns. With beautiful photography of their mission work overseas, this book reminds me of so much of the misery and poverty I witnessed in Uganda, and inspires me to keep moving along the path I have chosen toward missionary work.

In the past few weeks, I have lost four friends who died. That has taken an emotional toll. My earthly marriage has suffered from neglect as well as my Heavenly one. Two isolated masses existing within the same house does not have the same luster as one marriage enriching a home does. I believe I have alienated my sponsorees with my inattention. My other family relationships have suffered too. My sister and her family recently visited my parents’ home, and I went over to spend some time while they were in town. There, my mother got a little motherly and pushed food at me just one too many times, and I reacted in a manner indicating I was not in fit spiritual condition. I hurt the already suffering and fled… no, stormed out of the house to safety, only to return when the dining… no, feasting… no, bingeing was over. I will have to reevaluate whether it is safe to eat there. My siblings and I call it “the gingerbread house” for good reason. There is an old woman in that house who seems intent on fattening us all up with goodies. Still, spiritual fitness would make me more immune to her attempts and able to participate in family gatherings, whether they are around food or not. The corrective action to be taken is in my own condition, no one else’s.

Dear Father, today, keep me close to Your side. I need Your intervention. Come between me and the insignificant worries, but keep me diligent to do Your will. In Jesus’ name, Amen!