That is the tag line that is included with the weekly results email that I send to the participants of the "Biggest Loser" competition I'm hosting at my job.
I'm completely humbled and filled with joy over seeing peoples lives change around me. I give all glory to God because I seriously would not have the strength to continue this weight loss journey without His grace. Between starting my blog, the weight loss competition at work and leaving various comments on Kristin Steede's blog - I've received phone calls, emails, facebook messages and texts from people (friends and even strangers) who have been encouraged and who are seeking personal encouragement for themselves. WOW! In my head I'm thinking, "Seriously? You are really wanting advice from the fat chick." lol But as I've began talking to some of these people some interesting doors have began opening.
A friend and former co-worker has lost 11 lbs in a little a little over a month. Since she left the bank, she has been following my blog and we still talk via email and text. I was touched by this message I received from her about a month ago:
So, how much of a dork would I be if I said that your weight loss journey has inspired me?? I've tried time and time again to lose weight...And have succeeded...Only to gain it back again and again. I'll never be skinny...I just want to be healthy.... Ever since you said you did the 3K on the treadmill that night I keep telling myself that I need to get my lazy bum off the couch because while you're busting your hump working out, I'm eating Cheezits and watching reality tv. My life is the reality...Game on!! Thank you MMMMEEEEESSSHHHAAA!!
A good friend of mine from church called me a few months back saying how unhappy she's been about her weight and how she's tried numerous times to lose but it's just so hard. I said that I'm in this with her and want to encourage her along the way. I shared about all the things God's placed in my heart through this act of obedience and how as I'm becoming more obedient in my physical life I feel as if I am able to receive more in my spiritual life. It's been a neat accountability between us now as we are encouraging each other to continue on the journey and not lose heart. She lost 9 lbs in 1 week after a long talk we had about how it really is possible and it's for God's glory not our own.
Another co-worker of mine who is a participant of our "Biggest Loser" competition sent me an email last week asking if she could talk to me about some "non bank related" things because she just didn't know who else she could talk to. She is from one of our Missouri branches and I've never met her in person or even talked to her prior to the start of our competition. This has unfolded into a beautiful friendship of encouragement as she sent me her heart in an email. Going all the way back to things from her childhood to current she just began confiding in me and I truly was humbled and honored that she felt she could. I said right from the beginning, "Just a heads up, I'm want to be here to encourage you, talk to you and just be a friend to you. A lot of my answers are going to point to Jesus though, because that truly is where I find my strength. That's just a fair warning." She's just been a great person to talk since then and I love the bare honesty in the conversations we've had. She has lost almost 7 lbs in 4 weeks.
One of the neatest experiences yet I think is when I commented to a girl on Kristin's blog and received an email from her at like 2 am (I have a Blackberry) thanking me for the encouragement and how we found that she only lives about 2 hours away from me and will be moving to KC area soon. HOW STINKIN' COOL IS THAT? The one person you choose to reply to actually lives close and soon to be moving even closer. We are now friends through facebook and share a couple emails every week. I might actually be meeting her on July 18th at the Biggest Loser casting call. Her and her husband are going to the auditions. SWEET!
Lastly, today I got an email from another co-worker who has lost 9 lbs in 4 weeks and is participating in the competition. I sorta got emotional at my desk:
I know I have thanked you before, but I wanted to thank you again for sharing this opportunity with me (and the bank). I would still be eating whatever and feeling sorry for myself for not losing like I should for my wedding; all the while becoming depressed. And I really hope you know how much you inspire me. Honestly, I have thought of you a few times when I did not “feel” like doing something. I am so amazed on your determination and positive attitude as well as your willingness to share! I know this week may not have been your best or what you expected, but I KNOW your results will not be like this every week. So don’t you be discouraged either.
You are so AWESOME Mesha!!!!!!!!
The reason I felt to post all of this today is to show that if I can, seriously, EVERY ONE OF YOU can be used to motivate someone else. This has been an amazing opportunity to use my weight loss testimony to exalt Jesus. To honor Him and glorify Him with my success. It's just blowing my mind the people who are approaching me who I really never talked to before. Customers are stopping by my desk to check on me and ask what I'm doing. Family, co-workers, friends and even a few friends of friends.
I want to be a vessel of honor - and that includes this temple, this physical body, this sanctuary that I'm to take care of. Ya know, a lot of things I've chosen to take part of in my life have dishonored God, but I praise Him for forgiveness and I praise Him for the opportunity to be cleansed. I can stand before Him not stained and polluted - but clean! (Wow - I feel another post coming on, I MUST STOP!)
Verse(s) of the Day:
2 Timothy 2:19-21 (NKJV)
Nevertheless the solid foundation of God stands, having this seal: “The Lord knows those who are His,” and, “Let everyone who names the name of Christ depart from iniquity.” But in a great house there are not only vessels of gold and silver, but also of wood and clay, some for honor and some for dishonor. Therefore if anyone cleanses himself from the latter, he will be a vessel for honor, sanctified and useful for the Master, prepared for every good work.
Life is in the journey, not the destination, so do what you can and take it one day at a time. Go slow, do it right, and make your changes permanent — then help out others who are where you were.
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