Good afternoon to you all. It’s cold and rainy here in London and so the perfect day to do a little bit of writing.

As you know I started to run and get interested in fitness about 8 months ago. It’s been a gradual process and yet very educational.

The top photo I took today, the bottom about 6 months ago and I must say it’s very satisfying to see the progress that I’ve made.

Up to this point in my life I’ve never been too interested in sport. You see when you grow up gay you can run away from the sports world because of not fitting in and this can cause you to hate sport when actually the issue was never about sport to begin with. It’s not the case for every gay guy but it was for me!

But Jesus is the great healer and restorer and so it shouldn’t come as a surprise that as we get healed we do things that we didn’t do before….sport in my case!

However as I was looking over the pictures I smiled and said to myself

“I wonder if sin is like fat?”

You see all my life people would say to me

“You’re thin Michael, you can eat what you want and it makes no difference.”

Yet the camera was saying differently as was my stomach!

And so I wondered if this was like saying to someone

“You are such a good person, you can do what you want and have no need of confession ”

What if sin is like fat? What if it sticks to your soul just like fat sticks to your body and what if it builds up subtly over time to the extent that you don’t see it?

And what if your friends are like you and they say “you are fine” when you’re not because they don’t see their sins either?

What if sin is stubborn to remove like fat and requires a total change of diet and lifestyle?

What if it takes months and years of hard work to get rid of years of sins just like shedding fat?

What if some sins are harder to remove than others just like some areas of fat are harder to get rid of?!!

What if everyone around us was fat and unfit and so we all thought that it was just normal?

And what if there was nobody to tell us the truth and to get us into shape?!

These are just some of the questions that came to my mind as I look at my progress and while I’m delighted with the results, I’m even more delighted that it’s not just my body that I’m looking after but my spiritual soul too.

Prayer is the exercise of the spirit and charity is the out working of prayer and yet we live in a society where we are so focused on looking after our bodies that nobody hardly mentions the soul.

What is the point of being fit and healthy and then dying and going to hell?

What is the point in neglecting our souls just so we look good?

Perhaps St. Thomas of Aquanis could answer this question for us as he is a doctor of the church and was as fat as a whale!

That said I do believe that God is calling us to look after our bodies too and not to justify laziness, sloth or gluttony by claiming we don’t want to appear vain. There is absolutely nothing wrong with looking good and giving all the glory to God!

And so as I continue my journey of holiness, wholeness and health the key word is balance. Balancing a healthy prayer life with healthy eating habits with a healthy exercise routine and for those of you who like sacrifice and hard work, let me assure you that there is plenty of it!

One has to sacrifice things like chocolate, fatty foods and has to overcome laziness and sloth on those days when exercising feels like hell!

Yet the rewards are great and as we grow more and more in self-mastery and health we can’t but give God even more thanks for the wonderful gift of life and marvel at how He created us.

So ya, let’s get the balance and let’s look after our minds, our bodies and our souls and show the whole world what it’s like to be fully alive with Jesus!

Thanks for reading and may God bless and inspire you in new ways to have even more of the abundant life that He wants for you and for your families, friends and the whole world!

Michael

St. Thomas of Aquanis, pray for us.