What does the Bible say about losing weight? What does the Bible say about honoring God with your body? What are some Christian tips on weight loss and getting in shape? What is a biblical perspective on working out?
In this article, I’m going to give you 3 Christian tips that will help you lose weight in shape.
Try to Lose Weight and Get in Shape for the Right Reasons
If you are a Christian who wants to get in shape, I believe the first step you should take is to exam your motives. Having a healthy body is a moral thing to do. However, just because it is good to get in shape does not mean we always get in shape for good reasons.
Examining your motives is not only important so you can honor the Lord in your heart. It’s important to have the right motives when you begin to workout, eat right, and work on your overall physical health because a bad motive will not sustain you over the long haul.
Many people start working out after they breakup with their ex. It’s almost like they want to get revenge and be as attractive as possible so that person will be jealous and sad. People also often start working out after a breakup so that they can attract a new boyfriend or girlfriend, which isn’t a terrible motive but it one that will not sustain you over the course of your life.
Motives like these are not what you want because these motives are temporal. When these feelings fade your desire to workout will fade. If you are a Christian who truly wants to lose weight, workout, and get in shape, you need to start by doing these things for the right reasons.
Don’t Make Your Body Your God. Honor God with Your Body
So what is the right motive for weight loss and getting in shape as a Christian. The best motive for a healthy body is to honor the Lord with your body.
Or do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit within you, whom you have from God? You are not your own, for you were bought with a price. So glorify God in your body.” (1 Corinthians 6:19-20)
“For from him and through him and to him are all things. To him be glory forever. Amen. I appeal to you therefore, brothers, by the mercies of God, to present your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and acceptable to God, which is your spiritual worship.” (Romans 11:36 – 12:1)
If you do not seek to honor the Lord with your body, your body will become your god. Sometimes Christians even seek God’s help only so that they can honor their bodies. They want to look and feel a certain way and they try to use God as a tool to accomplish that goal. If you are a Christian, your motives for being physically healthy should be the other way around. You don’t want to make your body your god. You want to honor God with your body.
For many, of whom I have often told you and now tell you even with tears, walk as enemies of the cross of Christ. Their end is destruction, their god is their belly, and they glory in their shame, with minds set on earthly things.” (Philippians 3:18-19)
You don’t want to live to eat. You want to eat to live. What you put in your body should serve you and the goals you have for glorifying God in your body. You should not be a servant to the food you eat by being enslaved in gluttonous desires.
If you do not get this right, you will be simply trading in one idol for another. In my article titled What Does the Bible Say About Being Balanced?, we discuss the danger of swinging between the extremes:
Double-sided idols are expressed in two extremely different ways and yet have the same root sin as the cause of those sinful expressions.
For example, if you are struggling with idolizing your body and you seek to overcome this sin by being balanced, you will always be swaying back and forth between being a gluttonous overweight person to being a fitness fanatic. Your attempt to stay in the middle will force you to always be pushing or pulling to one side or the other. Hence why so many people have a long history of rollercoaster diets, gaining massive amounts of weight only to lose massive amounts of weigh just as many times. The stability never comes because they are still idolizing their body, they are just manifesting this sin in two different extreme ways.”
If your body is your god, you will serve your body rather than serving God with your body.
If you are a Christian who wants to lose weight and get in shape, here’s a more practical tip. There are hundreds of workout plans and diet options on the market. So which one should you choose? Well, I don’t know. Many of the will probably work even if they are very different than one another. To me, a more important variable for fitness is consistency.
If getting fit is just a fad for you, you won’t every get fit and stat fit. At best you will have a season of weight lost only to go back to your old habits one day. So whatever diet and exercise plan you choose, I recommend picking something that you feel you can do consistently. Proverbs 13:11 states, “Wealth gained hastily will dwindle, but whoever gathers little by little will increase it.” While this is about money, the underlying principle applies to life in general. Doing less over a long period of time always results in more than doing a lot in a little amount of time.
An extreme weight loss or workout plan might get you results faster, but the odds of you maintaining the intensity required for those results in highly unlikely. It’s better to do something less intensive that you will do more regularly than something crazy that will only be seasonal.
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