Daily Devotional for Saturday February 1, 2003

A Message of Hope to Those Who are Overweight

(Romans 15:4)

A message of hope to those who are overweight. I have written many Devotionals in the past dealing with keeping our 'temples" in the best shape possible and doing our part in being healthy so that we can serve Jesus at full strength. However, I realize that many are struggling with health issues beyond your control. Issues that in some cases are genetic in nature. First of all, let me tell you that God loves you for YOU, not how you look! Even though our society has bombarded us through the media with what the "perfect" person LOOKS LIKE..society has failed to show us what the "perfect person" is INSIDE!!!! To all of those reading these words today that are struggling with your weight and appearance, let me assure you that God is concerned about YOUR HEART...NOT...how you look.

My admonitions and encouragement in the past in regard to maintaining our bodies, our "temples", has been from the basis that to serve Him the most effectively, and for as long as possible, there is a responsibility on our part to stay in the best possible physical shape. This is NOT to be adored by the 'world" that we live in, but to be in the best shape possible to fulfill our purpose in this life, which is to serve and glorify God! Nobody will argue that the better you feel, the better you are physically, helps you to accomplish that.

However today, I want to speak directly to those who may have inherited through their genes a body size larger than others, or those who have legitimate medical issues that have caused them to be above the average weight. Never forget, these are issues that you were born with and NOT your fault. This does not preclude you from working as hard as you can, probably harder than many others, to maintain your body in the best physical condition that you can. But it is NOT your fault that you are overweight! You can only do the best that you can!

In the end, never forget that it is not a person that you have to please, but God. God will not judge you by the scale, but by your commitment to HIM! Continue to work with your doctors, do the best that you can to maintain your body in the best physical shape that you can, but never forget, it is your heart...your walk with the Lord.....that is the most important to God.

I love you and care about you so much. From the tens of thousands of emails that I receive daily, I know that many of you are struggling today with the issue of your weight. First, the key is FORGET about pleasing 'society", and be concerned about pleasing God. I am not saying to ignore the problem that you are battling, I am not saying give up. What I am saying is that you work first on your relationship with the Lord, THAN on your body. There is so much great science today that God has given to gifted men and women in that area. I pray and encourage you to do all that you can to take advantage of the latest medical research to keep yourself in the best physical shape possible. But never forget that in God's eyes, it is not your weight that HE sees, but your heart for HIM!!!!

I will pray for you today. Continue to do your best to keep yourself in the greatest physical shape that you can. God will guide you and help you in this area. The purpose of this is NOT to please society, but to be able to do our best in serving and glorifying God with our lives. As I get older, I realize more and more that as important as physical appearance is to the world that we live in, God is mainly concerned with our service and commitment to HIM. Our health is important since it is our way of doing our best to serve Him as long as we can. So do your best in that area. But never forget, ***how you look may be important in this world that we spend a brief time in, but your relationship with Jesus is important for ETERNITY!!!!

In His love and service, Your friend and brother in Christ, Bill Keller