At the end of every year, most people make at least one resolution to better in some area of their lives in the year to come. These can vary from “Save more, spend more time with family, read 10 books a year, travel to Europe,” and the list goes on. Yet, the top resolution made each year worldwide is almost always to lose weight and get healthy. There is something about the new year that brings us hope that this will be the year we finally shed those extra pounds start a new diet plan and start exercising more consistently. The new year brings us hope that things will be different, that we will be different. But the reality is that nothing will change, unless we change. No diet or exercise plan can change our eating and exercise habits in the long term, if we don’t first change our minds and attitude towards healthy behaviors.
We live in a world obsessed with exterior motivations and goals, and trends that only promise success for a moment, but never for a lifetime. We have to fight this by coming to the point where we decide to take care of our bodies, minds, and souls for something greater than a smaller dress size and the best 5k time in our running community. We must choose health for deeper reasons than we currently are. We must choose health to live a long life filled with love, purpose and joy.
As the new year approaches, I am personally vowing to be different. I don’t want to do another food or exercise challenge to get more toned or to somehow feel better about myself. To be honest, I don’t think my soul could handle it. I need something deeper, I vow to search for something deeper. I need and will choose a way of eating and exercising that will allow my body, mind and soul to thrive and to help me fulfill the purposes God has placed me on this earth for. I’m done with all the many standards of eating, exercising and living healthy. I know what works for me and that is what I will do. I will be different and not care what the other person is doing. I will be different for me, to become more of the person Jesus created me to be.
So my friends, my challenge to all of you is to do the same: to vow to be different. To search deep in your heart and wrestle with the true motivations behind every New Years resolution you make, especially in areas of health. To come to the point where you realize that you have to choose a way of eating and exercising that will give you the fuel and strength your body needs, but that which also will be sustainable for the rest of your life. Forget diets and forget trends. They only promise success and happiness for a moment. Sustainable ways of eating and exercising always promises success, joy and freedom for a lifetime.
I dare you to choose the latter.