Someone once told me it was harder to lose weight once you turned 50.
At the time, I didn't believe them. I figured it was all first grade math - you consume less calories than your body needs each day; you burn more calories through exercise and the weight will come off - end of story.
That was when I was younger. My back and knees didn't hurt so I could go for a long bike ride or play soccer with my kids. The problem is I didn't do those things back then when I could. And I let the pounds pile on. No wonder it's harder to lose now.
I'm not able to be as active as I once could have been and I have more to lose.
When I started to feel sorry for myself this morning, thinking a three egg omelet with toast slathered in butter wold taste awfully good, the Lord reminded me of some benefits of growing older.
First - The older I get, the more I have grown in Him.
I didn't do the healthier things when I was younger because I lacked focus and kept my head in the sand, thinking "It won't happen to me. I'll never be the overweight lady who needs a cane to get around."
Now that I'm older, my perspective has changed. I am that lady and my knees do hurt. But because of a change in my perspective, I have more "want to" now, more of a reason to stay focused and take the weight off.
I have matured spiritually too. More and more I see His hand in every aspect of my life. The closer I get to heaven, the more I want to make every moment, every written word count.
Second - Wisdom really does come with age.
With dieting, I know what to do and how to do it from years of yo-yo dieting. I don't have to learn any new skills to get the job done and I already have a wonderful collection of recipes, helps and exercise equipment. I also know why I failed in the past. My failures will help me succeed this time.
Spiritually that applies too. Sometimes I stand in awe of the wisdom God has grown in me through the life lessons I've learned. As I share with others, He helps me speak wisdom to them causing light bulb moments of understanding. To me that's absolutely awesome because I never considered myself a particularly wise woman.
Third, He has given me more time to reflect, study and share.
With my grand kids living farther away, I don't get to babysit like some grandparents do. Though I am busy in church, I've learned to limit my activities so I can write and research. This is a gift from the Lord so I can be an encourager to others through the written and spoken word - whether it's about dieting or about the things of God.
I ignored the temptation for the three egg omelet and had raisin bran instead this morning. Then I thanked God for being real in my life. I thanked Him for the valuable lessons I have learned that I can share with others and for helping me to become an encourager.
It may be a struggle; the weight may come off more slowly now that I'm over 50 - but with His help and encouragement it will come off because I have learned how to fight the good fight, to put on my full armor and to wage spiritual warfare. It doesn't mean I'll always win, but with His help, I'll always be able to get back up and fight on. And I'll be able to encourage others in the meantime as I remember the life lessons He has taught me.