I remember when…..

I remember when I was first introduced to AIDS. It began with a conversation at work. That’s back when I worked in the insurance industry and we had just discovered this deadly disease that would impact the health and life insurance industry in ways that could not be calculated. (Meaning that the industry would lose money….. as if!)

I remember people being terrified by AIDS The media (which did not run 24 hours a day) scared people poop-less! People became afraid of people. Those with AIDS were ostracized and humiliated regardless of how they got it.

I remember the first person I knew who died. It was a brutal death. it was horrible to watch his suffering, and I was sad for our loss but I didn’t get the disease from him.

And now there is ebola. Once again people are being terrified by the disease and once again the media is scaring people poop-less. And once again, I don’t plan on getting it.

People, let’s not become afraid of people. Let’s choose not to allow the media to scare us poop-less and let’s not humiliate those who have the disease.

Let’s remember the lessons that aids taught us and treat those who have this or any sickness with love, compassion, and respect while taking the necessary precautions to protect ourselves. You know the ones we should have been taking all along —- washing our hands, sneezing into our elbows (which is a new trick for this old dog who was taught to cover her mouth with her hands), not touching our eyes, and not putting our fingers in our mouths.

If you accidentally come into contact with someone who has ebola, the proper authorities will let you know. I know this because several years ago Hank and I went to our local hospital to pray for a little girl who was very, very sick. About three days after our visit the CDC showed up at our house with a bottle of antibiotics. They said that the little girl had a very contagious infection and we needed to take the antibiotics to protect ourselves. If they can find us in Gallup – they can find you where you are!

So…. no fear just love!

Relationships – Kids

Spending some time with Hannah on the beach before she moves to Ohio.

Let’s talk about our kids….I’ve said things like I’d take a bullet for my kid, I’d die for my kid, my kid is my life. And now I’ve discovered that I’m willing to live for my kid!

By taking care of my body, I’m actually choosing to live for my kid and I’m investing in her future peace of mind.

I love my daughter more than words can ever express and I don’t want her to bear the burden of having to care for me when I’m old. I don’t want her to have to make difficult decisions about my health and well-being.

Choosing to eat well and exercise are the only things that I can physically do to ensure that I’ll be able to live on and take care of myself as I age.

And it’s my gift to Hannah.

I’ve watched illness and disease destroy more than one life…. I’ve watched countless adult children fall into the position of nurse and care-taker. I’ve seen adult children torn between taking care of their own children and caring for their parents.

I’ve also seen the toil that it’s taken on the finances. If you think you have to get sick to die then you must also realize that it’s the most expensive way to go. It takes more than your money, it steals your children’s inheritance.

I’m not going to do that. By taking care of myself I’ll be able to fulfill the scripture that instructs us to leave an inheritance to our children’s children. (Proverbs 13:22)

So, on those days when I feel guilty about taking care of myself that’s when I  remind myself that I’m also taking care of that kid I love so much!

Relationships….

Yesterday I mentioned that our bodies are the only thing that we have throughout our lives. Everything is either relational or temporary.

Now, I don’t want you to think that relationships are not important. The truth is that we were created to love and be loved and we can only do that if we are in relationship with God and people.

HankFor the next few blogs, I’m going to write about how our perception of our bodies and our health affect the three most important people relationships in our lives. Later, I’ll share with you my thoughts on how our bodies affect our relationship with God the Creator.

The most important relationship in my life is with my husband, Hank. He’s more my life partner. He’s my best friend, fellow adventurer,  the father of my daughter, my ministry partner, and the one I turn to when life is not working out like I thought it would. He loves me more than anyone ever and has proven that he’ll always be there for me time and time again.

And yet, there have been many times that I’ve allowed my perception of my body to create a distance between us wider the Mississippi River. I’ve hidden in layers of clothes, turned out lights, and rejected his attempts at intimacy. (And when I rejected those attempts at intimacy I was rejecting him by implying that how I feel about my body is more important than how I feel about him.)

Like Eve after eating the forbidden fruit, I’ve tried to cover my nakedness because I’m ashamed of myself.

This lack of intimacy intensifies the lack of communication which leaves us feeling like roommates instead of lovers.  God did not create roommates to become one! When we are living as roommates instead of lovers then we have denied ourselves the power of agreement, the strength of two putting ten thousand to flight, and no one to pick us up when we fall.

Jesus said, “What therefore God has united (joined together), let not man separate or divide.” Mark 10:9

And I allowed the shame that I felt about my body to separate me from my husband and forfeited the blessings of God in my marriage all because I was not willing to exercise self-control in my life by denying myself those foods that pack on the pounds.

And I used those extra pounds as an excuse for not exercising which only compounded the problem. I found myself in an endless cycle where I could find no joy in my marriage or in life.

And then one day, I decided that it was time to make some changes. I started with watching what I ate and exercising and as the pounds melted away like wax on a candle my relationship with Hank improved….

Someone once asked me if Hank loved me more when I was thin than when I was overweight……. No, I love myself more when I’m thin! And when I love myself more I’m willing to come out from hiding to allow Hank to show me just how much he has always loved me. 

 

Scripture References:

  • Genesis 2:25 Adam and his wife were both naked, and they felt no shame.
  • Genesis 3:Then the eyes of both of them were opened, and they realized they were naked; so they sewed fig leaves together and made coverings for themselves.
  • Deuteronomy 32:30 How could one have chased a thousand, and two put ten thousand to flight, except their Rock had sold them, and the Lord had delivered them up?
  • Ecclesiastes 4:Two are better than one, because they have a good [more satisfying] reward for their labor; 10 For if they fall, the one will lift up his fellow. But woe to him who is alone when he falls and has not another to lift him up! 11 Again, if two lie down together, then they have warmth; but how can one be warm alone? 12 And though a man might prevail against him who is alone, two will withstand him. A threefold cord is not quickly broken.