This past issue of the Western Recorder has an article on how pastors are running and working to get in shape (“Run, Pastor, Run”). I appreciate this article for a number of reasons.
As some of you know, I have lost around 45 pounds since this time last year. By cutting out most fast foods, starch, and most (not all) sweets, plus taking time to exercise four times a week, I began to lose weight. Why did I feel the need to do this?
- Too many Southern Baptist pastors get-togethers. I would go to many Southern Baptist conferences and see pastors 10-20 years older than me struggling greatly with being overweight—and I was on my way to joining them. I began to realize that I could not preach on self-control, then not demonstrate it with my eating habits. Gluttony is a sin against God like all other sins.
- Healthy for my wife and church. When my wife was diagnosed with lupus back in May 2009, I knew that I needed to get in shape for her as well as myself. Plus, the duties of a smaller church pastor makes it necessary for me to be in shape for the preaching, training, visitation, and other duties that come with being a husband, father, pastor, and friend.
- History of heart problems in my family. Being so close to 40 (I’ll turn 40 next year), I knew that many in my family had heart issues.
- Pictures. Photographs do not lie. We can look in the mirror and fool ourselves, but photos make a big difference. Take a look:
Not sure if these pictures can tell a difference. The first is from 2006 for a directory at 206 pounds. The second is from Destin Florida, March 2010 at 168 pounds. The picture to the right is me preaching on Sunday, April 25th at 161 pounds.
I will be running my first 5K this year—definitely at the Raptor Run 2010 at the Creation Museum in Petersburg, KY. This is a big deal for me, since I’m not crazy about running but still want to see if I can actually do it. There’s another race here in Lexington (the Midsummer Night’s Run) on Saturday, August 14 that a bunch of us from our church at Boone’s Creek Baptist Church will be running.
I urge you to take care of your ‘temple’ (1 Corinthians 6:19-20)—it’s the only one God provides you. Take care of your temple for your sake, the sake of your calling as a minister of the gospel, for your family, for your church, for the glory of God!
What think ye?