“When I am more patient with the work God is doing and continues to do in me, I notice I have more patience with others.”
Today I get to share with you part of my friend Liz’s wellness transformation. We took a walk a few weeks ago and she set my heart on fire with testimony of what God’s been doing in her life. For me, the biggest part that she shared of her change was her view on relationships. God shaped her mind to view others through His eyes, but that took her faithful obedience of letting God do the deep renewing work of her heart and mind.
Before we get into it, I want to share a little bit about Liz! Liz’s favorite style of exercise is cardio-dance and running “with freedom”! The things that make her laugh the most are the joy of being with family and friends and her own clumsiness! If Liz had unlimited resources she would love to provide a safe space for teenagers and kids alike to dance. “A place that is about wholesome restoration and redemption. It would be a place for them to just be loved and enjoy moving together like family!” Liz is a bucket of giggles and paints a masterpiece through her gift of dance. She also does the good work of discipling young girls in her small group at church. It’s an honor to be her friend and my pleasure of bringing to you part of her wellness testimony. Read below!
Why is wellness important to you? It’s important to me because my body was given to me by my Creator to be used as His hands and feet. If I am not supporting this beautiful gift He has given me, then I will not be able to go forth and do what He has called me to do well.
Where did your wellness journey begin?
It officially started the beginning of last year when I changed my mindset about wellness-when I did the Wellness Revelation Bible study. It took me a year from then to really grasp what I was being taught through this Bible study. It was no quick or immediate transformation, but a slow and redemptive one.
What are the benefits of inner-training of the mind, spirit and soul?
Because I did all this inner work first before I started with the outside of myself, I feel that I am more successful. I believe that in order to really change, it starts with a change of one thought. Also taking time with Bible study as I apply it to my life. I know that sounds like it would take forever, but this kind of work will be lasting. I still have made mistakes along the way because I am human, but with the foundational groundwork toward transformation it can be used as a net to catch the fall. I have to say that none of this has been possible without my walk with my friend, Jesus, holding my hand and most of the time carrying me.
And how did that affect your physical and nutritional disciplines?
As I used last year for all this groundwork, it gave a good foundation to build off of to start doing nutritional options of food and exercising everyday. It gave me the freedom to try what works for me and what does not. Then to forgive myself when I feel like I failed or messed up or ate the whole jar of peanut butter, lol. With Christ working in me, He helps me to bounce back quicker and better than I was before.
How do you stick with the disciplines of faith and wellness especially on those days where there’s no motivation?
I remind myself of the goals and purpose of why I am doing it in the first place. I also talk with others around me that are on my team of encouragement. They remind me of my reason, God’s truth and help me to keep going. Being in community while going towards whole body wellness is what will get someone through it. I would not be able to do this alone without my community of support.
If you were to look back at yourself this time last year, what is a major difference that you see?
The major difference I see is the transformation of what Jesus has done in my heart. He has worked on me a lot; He’s pulled me through some of the hardest times of my life. My past was still affecting me in such a severe way that I needed that transformation to start from within. Jesus knew that. He knew exactly where to start and begin. I kept pushing through for more and more transformation on my own, but that crashed and burned. I needed to realize that I could not do it on my own and that Jesus has perfect timing. Transformation felt like slow progress, despite my desire to change immediately. However, I am glad He does gradual work because how would I appreciate the transformation without the process?
How has this affected your relationships with other people?
It has affected my relationships in big ways. When I can accept myself and who God has made me to be, I then in turn want to love and accept others around me. When I am more patient with the work God is doing and continues to do in me, I notice I have more patience with others. When I learn to step into His love over me and trust that He knows what I am doing then I am able to extend the same to others. When I have respect for how I treat my body that God has given me then I can have that for others. It all starts with leaning on Christ for all things knowing I cannot conjure them up on my own. He propels me to have healthy relationships with others.
Reflecting on what you’ve learned in your journey thus far, what is one message that you think everyone should know?
One message I think everyone should know is that real transformation starts on the inside and continues to the outside–not outside to in. Yes, it is important to take care of the body and temple Jesus has given us, but if we want true transformation, it has to begin with Jesus healing our heart and mind.