Like many people, I have had a somewhat long struggle with body fat. You see, I have had seven children, and no multiples in the bunch. That means I have been pregnant seven separate times. So after years of having these seven children, with the youngest now being eight, I had a pouch of fat on my lower abdomen that just simply was not going away no matter how much I dieted or exercised.
I wanted it gone because, quite honestly, it not only looked bad but it was masking the hard work I was doing during my workouts.
I was building muscle, but it was hidden by this unsightly pouch of fat. I wasn’t looking for a quick and easy solution to rid myself of weight gain. I was doing the hard work. It just wasn’t showing because of this pouch, which by that point I had just determined was evil, that wasn’t leaving! I would sweat and sweat with each workout. I would eat just the allotted calories.
I tried every diet in the book and yet that pouch was refusing to be evicted.
Our walk is sometimes the same as that stubborn pouch of fat. You see sometimes we read and study our Bible, we go to church, we read books, we have the fish on our car and yet we struggle with problems in life. We sometimes cry out “I do the work…I pray, I study, I teach bible study classes and yet I continue to struggle with….(insert issue here)”. Yet all that work we do is masked and hidden. Perhaps you are hiding your faith behind a layer of doubt.
We may do deeds but maybe we don’t really believe deep down that God is going to come through. We may do the work but then turn around and gossip about someone when we’re with our friends (hmm…none of us do that right?). We may do the work and then scream and yell at our spouses or our kids.
And oh…then there is traffic. We all lose our witness in traffic, right?
The point is, we feel as though we have nothing to show for our walk but many times the results are masked by that ugly pouch of disbelief and sin we allow to creep into our lives little by little. The works that we do are hidden to the world beneath the image we portray when we get angry or gossip. People are watching you! They don’t see how many times you read your Bible or how many times you prayed this morning. They see how you react in traffic, whether you choose to stand around the office and gossip about a co-worker with them, whether you take some copy paper home from work because it’s a big company and who is going to miss it, whether you clock in a little late and leave a little early (yes, taking time from our employers IS stealing!)…all these things hide the spiritual muscle you are building inside.
You’re not seeing your work show through in your life because it is hidden.
And it is those things that keep you from progressing.
Adipose cells, which are fat cells, are big, empty cells. They take up a lot of space and they grow…oh do they grow! But they are empty cells. I studied anatomy and physiology and when you see these cells they contain nothing but space. The things we do that hide our commitment to God and faith are empty and yet grow, like our fat cells. They serve no purpose and hurt others and ourselves. So stop feeding them.
I finally did something that some people might not agree with.
I had liposuction on that pouch of fat. It no longer hides the work I do and continue to do. What I learned about lipo is, once the fat cells are removed, they do not ever come back again unless you gain about 30lbs. Once they are destroyed they are gone.
Once you rid yourself of the things that mask your faith, the things that hide all that you do, it will disappear and your faith and work will show through to everyone.
No more hiding your faith under layers of bad habits. No more relying on old responses to deal with rough situations. Fully relying on God means letting go of those things. You see, it is not enough to witness to people. It is just as important to BE a witness that people can see.
Diane Ferreira is a wife and mother living in South Florida. She has been actively involved in various ministries for over 15 years. She has dreamed of being a writer since she was old enough to read, and is now living that dream by writing her first novel. In addition to writing, Diane works for a Fortune 500 company and has owned several businesses. She is also a successful public speaker and personal coach.