Wednesday, February 16, 2011

I Love You ... But, Don't Get Fat!

I had a conversation with my son that ignited this blog. Ignited is a really, really nice word to describe such the discussion. I suppose I was caught off guard with what he said because of all the time I have spent in teaching my children what is right and wrong and how to treat others, I assumed that they understood judging by what they convey to me and what they say to other people. I was even pleased with my younger son who received the compliment that he thinks far above his age. Good, they have it and no one can come and teach them any nonsense that would take them away from Kingdom Living.  Then my son goes ahead and says something like the title of this blog. Profanity was not my reaction; however, it might as well have been when the results were something like, "Why in God's name would you say something so stupid?"

Having never been a single numbered dress size when my age was no longer a single digit, I take certain subjects personally. I got over people deciding to give me diet advice or telling me that I looked so good way back when but did not have these wonderful words back then when I could have used them. I no longer feel the need to please others with what I look like knowing that no matter how hard I try to be a certain size or weight, there will always be someone who thinks I could lose a few more pounds or not to get too small so I won't look sickly. A person can just go nuts if he/she bases their overall happiness on what they should look like. Yet when these same people continue to speak thinking  they are doing more good then harm and then I have to hear it from my children who I know was taught well (based on the Word of God), now that's territory that can make the lioness come out in every mother and send out a roar that could put goose bumps on a goose. How dare you!

I have heard message after message not just from well known ministers but those who are not so well known just berate women with what they look like and where they need to tighten up. I suppose they got tired of hearing those talk shows bash men and the only way they felt to even things out is make it a forum on the pulpit. Again, I write, how dare you, knowing how speakers of God can influence people. Knowing that God gave the platform to feed His sheep and not a means to feed the flesh. Knowing that the tongue has been described as evil that no man can tame (James 3:8 KJV)... how dare you! How dare you manipulate young minds because your wife made you angry and said something she shouldn't have said. How dare you make it your place to get revenge on a group of people that creates half of the population because of something that has happened in your past. How dare you use the blessing of God for ill gotten gain.

Let's go over the statement in of itself. I love you is a phrase used to express the care one has for another. God in His awesomeness and almighty power is first and foremost described as being what we use to express that care. He is Love (1 John 4:8 KJV). When said for the first time, we have to stop to react. It took a lot to say it and for most of us it takes a lot to receive. It is a powerful statement and best to be used at the most appropriate times. It is also what Jesus tells the disciples that all of the Law and prophets can hang on the expression of loving God with all you have and your neighbor as you would yourself (Matthew 22:36-40 KJV). It is a phrase that means so much and should never be taken lightly or used casually. Yet the very next word after this wonderful phrase is the word, "but". It opposes everything that was said prior to using it. Therefore, I love you, was wasted and the command, "don't get fat," stood alone without comfort, support, or care. It is under the disguise of concern about the overall health of the individual. HA!

It is a blatant and blunt expression that the concern for the individual is threading on looks. It is a thread that isn't woven with anything else and therefore is extremely fragile. It can snap at the change of anything that threatens what someone sees. How does this have anything to do with faith?

Granted, I will agree that the health of an individual and the weight one carries is something to go before the Lord with, its just never, ever something that is a bargaining chip for a relationship, marriage, or to obtain some superficial desire. If a person carries extra pounds when a friendship begins, there has to be something that was attractive in order for that friendship to exist at all. Why then does it become a means to control and make the person feel insecure? Should the person needing to lose a few extra pounds then retaliate and speak on those issues of you not having parents when growing up or those fears of catching some unknown disease by which there is no cure? Weight is an issue everyone can see but what about those wounds that no one sees unless shared with others. Consider your ways.

I suppose such a statement which entitles this blog is said because of seeing someone else after so many years. For instance, at a family reunion or just happen to see a person from high school after 20 or so years. I have seen such people and yes they are different looking. Whether it is weight, hair loss, from puny to muscle bound or from rags to riches. People change over a given period of time. Some people look the same as they did in high school but their perspective and outlook on life is vastly different then when they were a child. With all of this change, what does the viewer see when looking at you? Will you work diligently in maintaining the outward appearance while the inner man is completely neglected? Do you have the stature of a king and the heart of a coward?

I recall a man having a contract with his new wife for her to look the same as she did when they first got married. Oddly enough, she agreed to it. In the agreement they were to both check the other when they saw extra pounds on the other person. How long did this agreement last when he was predisposed to weight because of his family gene pool and for his love of sweet treats? How long would she care when she had three of his children and had to lose the weight after each pregnancy? Would this agreement begin many quarrels? Would it end the insecurity of never being able to look as they both did in their 20's? I failed to mention that they are both in ministry. With this agreement of sight walking, would it impede the information God has for them to speak to His people?

What does that statement mean? There is a condition to the love given. If you love me, I mean truly love me, then it doesn't matter how I look. Because of the unconditionally love, he/she will care for him/herself. It is an automatic because of the cyclical motion of who God is and how He is invited in the relationship first an foremost. He, and apparently only He, is unconditional.

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