Did you ever wonder why every Weight Watchers, NutraSystem or Jenny Craig commercial has a teensy, tinsy little disclaimer below whoever's yammering on at the moment? It says, "Results Not Typical."
It's there because, statistically only 2% of the people who lose weight with these programs (or any diet and exercise program for that matter) will be able to keep it off. Sure, just about everyone who follows one of these programs will lose weight--but only that Golden 2% will keep it off. For all the rest of us, we'll gain it back, plus some.
As a Christian, struggling with the sin of gluttony, I've spent a lot of time sitting around saying, "I know I should be able to do this alone...the Holy Spirit is in me...self control is a fruit of the Spirit...I know I should be able to do this...even though I've tried eleventy-bazillion times...I know I should be able to..."
And if that's the way you still look at it, I'm certainly not going to condemn you.
But I, personally, can't see it that way any more.
Being a genuine Christian doesn't mean that all your sinful tenancies disappeared the moment you were reborn. Instead, it means that you hate your sin and you will do whatever is necessary to kill it.
The person who gets saved and throws away his pack of cigarettes never to pick them up again is cause for rejoicing! Praise God for that! But that doesn't make him somehow superior to the Christian in the next pew who is sweating and shaking as he applies another nicotine patch.
Jesus said if your hand causes you to sin, cut it off!
Well, in my case I think it's my stomach...
I'm saying this tounge-in-cheek, of course, but I think the overarching principle Jesus was teaching is that on the Day of Judgment, when you stand before Almighty God, you will realize it was worth whatever you had to do to kill the sin.
So hey, if you happen to be in the Golden 2%... I am genuinely SOOOOOOOOOO happy for you! But one day, after being taken to the hospital by ambulance with something very much like a heart attack, I just had to admit to myself that I'm not.
I've decided that I need to take advantage of the advances in the medical field that will enable me to put a tireless and unyielding "accountability partner" into my very guts; one that will never again let me eat more than a bite or two at a time.
I'm not looking forward to going through what they call "Hell Week." I'm not looking forward to suffering the agony of dumping syndrome. I'm not looking forward to never again being able to eat a Reese Cup, or (*gasp!*) never again being able to drink a Mountain Dew....(Aaaaaa! Wait a minute...maybe it's time to reconsider...)
Sure this may not be the "natural" way... but neither were either of the two c-sections I had, and I'm certainly thankful to God for those. :-)
By strange coincidence, a friend just pointed out to me, that its also only 2% of professing Christians in the U.S. that actually share their faith on a regular basis. And did you know that an astounding 80-90% of those making a decision for Christ fall away from the faith? Why is that??!? Listen to the message below for an answer that will blow your mind: