Gary and I went to Kohls on Monday. With a 30% off coupon, we just had to take advantage of the savings, so we picked up shirts for Gary, shirts and shoes for Dylan, and shirts for me. After trying on a couple of mediums, I realized they weren't going to work, so I had Gary go back and get larges. They fit much better.
In the picture, the shirts in the back are larges. The two in front are mediums. I really liked them, but they didn't have them in a large. "I can get into them when I lose some weight," I said confidently to Gary. He looked a little dubious, but didn't argue with me. We left, happy with our purchases.
Two days later, I had a doctor's appointment in Waverly and I stopped at the store afterward. I had a few things on my list, but I also picked up a few things that weren't on my list.
Do those look like good purchases for someone hoping to get into medium-sized shirts instead of large ones? No, I know they're not. I knew it the day I bought them, but I listened to my flesh instead of wisdom. I felt stressed and I felt like I could have eaten the whole box of Twinkies in one sitting. (I didn't, but I ate six in two days before I confessed to Gary and Dylan. Ahem, they didn't know about the candy.)
I exercise regularly, but I've also gotten into the very bad habit of snacking mindlessly when I'm stressed or bored. It's time to change those habits. If I say one thing (I'm going to fit into those medium shirts) but do another (Mmmm....Twinkies!) then I'm not really living out my beliefs.
I know it seems a little silly when we're talking about snack foods, but we can be in danger of doing the same kind of thing in other areas of our lives, too.
We can say we believe in purity, but then we fill our minds with junk from trashy novels or questionable movies or TV shows.
We can say that love is important, but then we treat others badly when they upset us or disappoint us.
We can say we love God, but then we push him aside during the week and just give Him a few minutes on Sunday when we go to church instead of living for Him every day.
It's hard. We all fail at times. The important thing is to keep growing. We learn, we practice, we get back on track when we fall back into harmful old habits.
A Twinkie once in a while won't hurt us. Six in two days just may get us into an extra-large instead of a medium. I know better. By the way, I shared three of the last four Twinkies...and I really enjoyed the very last one because I may not have one again for quite a while.
"Don't lazily slip back into those old grooves of evil, doing just what you feel like doing. You didn't know any better then; you do now." (1 Peter 1:14 The Message)
Do you have any bad habits you fall back into when you're tired or stressed? How can focusing on God help you to stay strong and keep doing what is better for you?