Squeeze, pull, suck in.. okay breathe. Lay down on the bed, suck in again and zip. There zipped finally!
Now is the tricky part I have to stand up and try to walk. I make my way to the edge of the bed, feet firmly planted ready to embrace my new jeans. I begin to sit up and it seems ever ounce of fat that I have not managed to squeeze into my jeans is now oozing over the top. You know what I am talking about... the all to familiar "muffin top." As if the reality of my jeans not "really' fitting isn't enough, I try to take a step in these jeans that are erupting with squishy goodness out of the top.
Oh yes I can walk, but it is more like a walk of pain. I look as if I am trying to hold a penny firmly in place between my legs. I shallow breathe, do a few squats, thinking maybe just maybe I can stretch them out. I turn around and look in the mirror and to my horror I realize that my butt that should look round instead looks like a ski slope. Any shape I possibly had is now gone. I am getting the picture now that I am not going to be comfortable in my own jeans. I desperately tried but the harsh reality is that they just don't fit. Could it be that I am a huge failure and the mere idea of one day being able to comfortably slip on those jeans will never be reality?
I realize that these jeans are going to require some actual work on my part. In order for those beautiful jeans to fit me I am going to have to give up a little. My morning chai loaded with yummy calories will need to be replaced with a walk. My love affair with carbs may need to take a backseat to an apple instead. Ridding my body of the unwanted fat is going to require work. I have to spend time caring for my body in a way that is not that easy. It isn't easy for me to eat the things I am supposed to and it isn't easy to deny myself the things that for some reason I desperately think I need.
I sometimes view my relationship with God the same way I view wearing that all illusive pair of jeans. I want to squeeze him into my life and when I realize it squishes out all of the ugly parts of me, I get a little uncomfortable. I lay back on the bed and try to soak up a little "God" time a.k.a. zip my jeans. I spend about 5 minutes randomly reading the bible and stand up hoping my day now will fit me like a glove. The God that I thought would calm my fears for the day is now not fitting me. I want to have him in my life but I realize I am going to have to cut out some things in my life to devote time to this relationship.
I can't help but think "what a failure" I am. I know I will never look like her in those jeans. I will never have "that kind" of walk with God.
She makes it look so easy. I even see her eat candy bars and she still wears those jeans. We look at other women/men and think if only I had faith like her.
If only my life was that easy.
What I fail to realize is that in order for her to still wear those jeans and eat the candy bar, she has to also put in the hard work.
A life that glorifies God is sometimes painful. We have to cut out areas in our lives that we think we need but in order for God to complete the work in us he requires action on our part.
God wants to see us walk confidently in the jeans He has created for us to wear. But in order for us to wear the jeans we must begin the process of disciplining our body to wear them.
Our walk with God is not much different. He wants to use you in areas you never dreamt possible but you need to discipline your life so that you can begin to dream the dreams He has for you.
You can't expect to try him on for size every couple of days or weeks and be able to walk confidently in all He has for you.
You look at someone else, who's walk with the Lord you admire and think casual Christianity will get you there. God wants all of you. He wants you to want to spend the time building a relationship with him.
He wants you to feel amazing in the jeans (ministry) He has given you to wear. Once you begin to put in time praying, reading and just listening to His voice you will begin to see the change. There will be times when the run you are on seems overwhelming. That friend that you just want to win to Christ, but every time you are with them you feel yourself compromising. You may need to get rid of that carbohydrate in your life that is keeping you spiritually fat.
Let God begin the work in you.
After you begin to walk in His truth and in relationship with Him, you may realize that those jeans were never going to fit you, because He created you to be the way you are and you keep trying to fit into someone else's jeans.
Philippians 1:6 "...he who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus."
What do you need to start cutting out so that you can begin to walk in all that God has planned for you?