The Cart Goes Behind The Horse – 1 Timothy 4:8

1 Timothy 4:8 – For physical training is of some value, but godliness has value for all things, holding promise for both the present life and the life to come.

Repost: This is an older posting from my personal weight-loss journal from a few years back. Hope you enjoy.

I was surprised to find that many of the young people I work with have never even seen a horse and cart. So it is of no surprise that the old adage “Don’t put the cart before the horse” may be lost on them. It has gone the way of the record player, 8-track tapes, floppy disc, and the steam locomotive. But for those of us who know what order the horse and cart go in understand what I am going to talk about.

I stood in line waiting to weigh in on the first week in January. There were tons of people there. Some had made a new years resolution to lose weight. Others were there because they over-did the holiday celebrations. Some were there to try to lose some of their winter fat that we all have a tendency to put on before the cold days set in.

Everyone was excited. The new ones were excited because of the challenge ahead. Us old-timers were excited to see so many new faces. It was great to have the room full.

But it didn’t last. Within 3 weeks many had stopped coming. Part of that is because they didn’t have a realistic goal or expectations. Weight loss is a discipline and no discipline is easy or feels good. It takes work, sweat, failure, and a willingness to get back on the horse just to get thrown again. But when you stick with it you will eventually find that you are riding that horse. (I believe I have fallen into an equestrian theme today).

The same is true in our walk with the Lord. We all want to become “mature Christians”. But sometimes it is discouraging because we find ourselves weak and giving in to temptation. God doesn’t expect us to be perfect overnight. Christian growth takes time. It takes failure as well as success. It takes learning endurance for the long run.

Exercise is profitable. Physical training is great. Discipline in eating is a must. Understanding the journey and having a plan to get there is vitally important. But don’t expect all that weight to be gone overnight. Heavy exercise programs, fad diets, and miracle drugs are not the way to go. Take small, sure steps and get in it for the long run.

Dear God, Help me not to get the cart in front of horse. Help me to take small, sure steps and to build the endurance that is needed for the long run. Like my walk with you, weight-loss is a lifestyle change. Help me to make the necessary steps it takes to succeed. I pray these things in the name of Jesus, Christ, my Lord, and my savior, Amen.

“I have a great diet. You’re allowed to eat anything you want, but you must eat it with naked fat people.”
-Ed Bluestone

“To be a great champion you must believe you are the best. If you’re not, pretend you are.”
-Muhammad Ali

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