I want to follow up on this post from two months ago. The very fact that I first wrote about it two months ago and am only acting on it now, is testament to how difficult this subject can be. It is also a testimony to the fact that if you press through… you can do it!
First of all, please know that health-wise I am above average in all categories. Peter Pan really has nothing on me. Often my wife will say that she has 5 kids… numbering me as one of them. Especially when I shave my beard, I almost always get carded… still… at 43. The not good side of that is I love to stay up way later than anyone in the house. I love knowing about all that happens in a single day until that final grain of sand hits the top of the pile in the bottom half of the hour glass. Physically you know when you are not right. Getting enough sleep and always feeling tired are not supposed to go together. The fact is we all know when we are not where we want/need to be with our health.
The pastorate is not generally thought of as a healthy occupation. Let’s face it… we have tons of private stress that must remain, well, private. We listen to and carry the burdens of others (not to mention, our own) and often have no (earthly) place to lay those burdens. For most pastors it is a fairly sedentary office – not an excuse, just a reality. Then there is the “pastoral culture” itself. I do not wish to name names, but think of the pastors you have known. How many of them took care of themselves physically? Unfortunately I think there are more negative examples than positive.
For me the unhealthiness became very apparent as we went through the pain of closing Process Church. I initially did not manage that experience well. And in the last 2 years I have added almost 20 lbs. to an already overweight frame. I knew I was in bad shape and needed to fix it. So a little more than a year ago I started running. I was really getting in to it… having fun and firming up. Then we had to move (locally) and that completely threw me off my my game.
Getting right will look different for all of us. I knew for me that it was not really about a number on a scale or on a tape measure. For me it was a mindset. Up to this point I really didn’t care. As a result, this thinking began to not only take its toll on my body, but on my family and even my own way of seeing things. For me this journey was about getting to one word. It eluded me at first but now I’m on the path… DETERMINED. I will get back to healthy living. This week was a huge test and so far, I’ve passed. More about that later.