You have to start thinking of yourself as a work in progress. This means that your work will never truly be complete.
This is the first thing you have to wrap your head around when trying to figure out how to produce change in your life: You are to be engaged in a process of constant change. I love how Paul describes this in Colossians 3:8-10:
“But now you yourselves are to put off all these: anger, wrath, malice, blasphemy, filthy language out of your mouth. Do not lie to one another, since you have put off the old man with his deeds, and have put on the new man who is renewed in knowledge according to the image of Him who created him.”
This is an incredible passage of Scripture in which Paul describes how you must put off the old and put on the new. If you want to maximize your health and your life, you need to be in a constant state of change by putting off your old bad habits and putting on new good ones.
Think of those old habits as weights that are slowing you down and keeping you from running toward the goal. Listen once again to what the author of the key verse in this chapter has to say about laying all those weights aside:
“Therefore we also, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which so easily ensnares us, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us” (Heb. 12:1).
You cannot be weighed down by sin and those stinky old habits. Instead, you have to run with endurance so that you can finish strong.
Read Robert Clyde Lockley’s testimony of how he triumphed in a program called "Losing to Live."
Robert Clyde Lockley has participated in three "Losing to Live" sessions, has lost a total of 75 pounds, and has initiated a "Losing to Live" program at his own church.
But he didn’t start out with those goals in mind.
Before "Losing to Live," Lockley weighed 300 pounds, was recovering from pneumonia, had a weakened immune system, and was on three different blood pressure medications. The former drill sergeant realized he needed to make a change. But even though he already knew how to exercise, he struggled unsuccessfully to lose weight and keep it off.
Then, in January 2013, he heard about "Losing to Live." At first, Lockley was not sure that the program was for him. But, as he tells it, God “got a hold of him.” He had never heard of people getting off blood pressure medication because of weight loss.
Lockley learned that he’s got to actually attend the program lose weight, to make attendance a priority. Additionally, he realized that he “needed to become a student of fitness and nutrition.” It was a challenge for Lockley, but he worked at it. About "Losing to Live," Lockley says, “The system is your system. You make it do what you want it to do. It’s not easy—but the end result is great!”
Lockley also discovered that a person can get filled up eating fiber and not be hungry and not overeat. “I was not hungry. Did I desire other things? Yes, I did. But something happened. Sacrifice your likes and your taste buds for 12 weeks … it will change. When it changes, everything else will change.”
When Lockley achieved 27 pounds of weight loss, suddenly his wife was interested in what he was doing. He never said a word to her; she saw with her own eyes the healthy changes and the results, and then she also became interested in weight loss.
At first, Lockley simply wanted to lose 30 pounds and be done with it, but then he heard that "Losing to Live" was a lifestyle change, that it will affect you and everyone else you come in contact with for the rest of your life.
“I had to go back, pull out all the Scriptures that I read in the Bible, that Pastor Steve had written down, and those had to become my Scriptures,” he says.
Also, Lockley had to find exercises that he enjoyed and could consistently do. These included weight training, walking, swimming and bicycle riding. He found out that the more weight he lost, the easier it was for him to exercise. He noticed that in the beginning, when he had a lot of weight to lose, he needed to start slow, but as he got lighter, he could exercise more.
Once he dedicated his body to God, incorporated healthy lifestyle changes and started praising God, his emotions and whole outlook on life started to change. Also, Lockley stresses that you must pray to God and get rid of any unforgiveness you might have towards others, even from years ago.
“Holding on to unforgiveness is like you taking cyanide expecting the other person to die,” he says. "It does not work. You will be the one dying.”
After his successful weight loss, Lockley brought the "Losing to Live" program to his home church, South Potomac Church in southern Maryland, and is currently a leader of the program there.
Author Steve Reynolds has served as the senior pastor of Capital Baptist Church in Annandale, Virginia, since 1982. He launched a weight-loss campaign in his church and community after he lost over 100 pounds. In his church alone, participants have lost over 8 tons of weight! Steve’s story has been featured in local, national and international media, including Fox News, CNN, The Washington Post and the Chicago Tribune.