Psalm 139:14 New American Bible (Revised Edition)
14 I praise you, because I am wonderfully made;
wonderful are your works!
My very self you know.
The Feast of Transfiguration of the Lord is celebrated on August 6th, the day of my birth. You would think that I would have figured this transfiguration thing out by now, right? This is the year of my transfiguration, and finally, after 68 years of living, I’m getting the physical aspect in sync.
For the first few weeks of the pandemic I stayed in bed until late morning. It wasn’t until the third week that I realized that this lockdown was not going away anytime soon, so I started to work out more than usual. Exercise has always been a part of my life but it was never done with any consistency. I worked out three or four days a week, but I never saw any noticeable physical metamorphosis.
The Wake Up Call
For over 30 years I have prayed about losing weight. God knows my heart and my lifelong struggle to lose weight. I enjoy eating; to me it is like a sweet symphony and snacking is the crescendo. In late April I added another thirty minutes to my workout, and surprisingly it came with ease. By the time the end of May arrived, my waistline was down by an inch and a half. July brought even better results, another inch off my waistline. My clothes were finally fitting, and I felt comfortable in my skin. Adding another half-hour to the normal hour routine has taken more discipline but I’ve accomplished that too. Though I’ve only lost 7 pounds my body is healthier, and I feel confident that the pounds will finally start falling off.
I’ve made a lot of foolish weight-loss choices, but I will never forget the one about the tea. About 10 years ago I was on a Southwest Airline flight headed to New Orleans to visit my sister Jo. Mike was not traveling with me, so I sat in the window seat. A southern gentleman took the aisle seat. An announcement was made that the flight was full and the remaining passengers were asked to take middle seats. An attractive Filipino woman took the middle seat next to me. This woman was about my age, yet she looked fabulous. I wondered whether it was genetics, or was she on to something special to keep her figure on track. The southern gentleman introduced himself to us, but I was really directing my attention to this Filipino woman. He asked if we wanted a cocktail. I promise, on a normal basis, I would never take up this offer; but I wanted to ask this stranger how she remained so slim. We all had our drinks and toasted to a safe flight. Then I started. I cut right to the chase and blurted out, “How do you stay so slim?” She gave out a cute giggle and said, “I drink tea on a regular basis.” “Tea? Tea?” I asked. Her reply was “Yes.” Well, now that the pandora’s box was open, I needed more information. I dug through my huge handbag to pull out a pen to write down the name of this miracle tea. “What is the name of the tea?” I asked. “Oh, you can only get this tea at an Asian market.” I was getting impatient and wanted to say, “Just give me the NAME of the tea already!” “It’s called Three Ballerinas,” she answered. I took a deep breath and could not wait to get off the plane to start my new habit of tea drinking. As the plane landed, I made the Sign of the Cross and thanked God for traveling mercies. I said good-bye to my traveling companions and almost ran to greet my sister. I was on a mission after all. My sister gave me her usual bear hug, and as we were walking to her car, I could not stop talking about the Three Ballerinas tea. My sweet sister said, “I know where there is an Asian market. “Let’s stop and pick up the tea.” I thought to myself, “Could this trip have a better start?” Sure enough, there with all the other strangely named teas were the boxes of Three Ballerinas. “How many are you going to buy?” my sister asked. “Oh, I’m going to start with four boxes, just in case I can’t find it at home (online buying was non existent). We were so happy to have our miracle tea, so as soon as we arrived at Jo’s, we started our tea drinking. My nephew Nick, who was staying with Jo at the time, wanted to try the tea as well. The trip was a short three-day weekend for me, and my sister had something planned for each day. All I wanted was to lose weight fast. We had the tea with our dinner and then again for breakfast.
The Tea From Hell
Thank God my sister’s home was equipped with three bathrooms! We had to stay put for the entire day because the darn tea was wreaking havoc in our bowels. We were all doubled over with stomach cramps, but that didn’t matter because we had the tea with our take out lunch as well. We were all stuck at home, afraid to travel because of the side effects of the tea. From that day forward I never drank hot tea again because it scares me. The Filipino lady is an experienced tea drinker, but we abused our bodies with this product because we wanted instant results.
I was either listening to EWTN or Relevant Radio, when I heard an advertisement about a product that reduces inflammation. With all the added exercise, my knees started to give me a heartache; so I sent away for a 12-day trial of Sweetamine. Much to my surprise the product started showing results on the fourth day. I was still a little skeptical and waited to use up the 12-day supply before diving in and ordering a full box. Sweetamine has helped me maintain my workout regimen without pain. This product has saved me from excruciating back pain as well. My husband Mike always works out for an hour a day. When his knee was giving out, I started him on Sweetamine. In one day he was back on the treadmill without pain. I am not advertising for this company nor am I getting paid for endorsing this product (I wish I were), but it really works.
Happy In My Skin
It may be that I didn’t get in line in time for the slim gene pool, but it no longer matters. God made me who I am, and He loves me as I am. We don’t need teas, laxatives, diet pills or books to tell us what we already know. God gave us feet to walk, arms to embrace and a mouth to praise Him. I am 68 years old now and I’m still being transformed both spiritually and physically.
Dear Lord, I thank You for my health and the ability to exercise. I pray for all women who suffer from low self-esteem because of their appearance. Lord, teach us to love our inner beauty, so it will illuminate from the inside. Dear Jesus, let us understand Your unconditional love, so that we can love ourselves as we should. Amen.
Proverbs 19:8 New American Bible (Revised Edition)
8 Those who gain sense truly love themselves;
those who preserve understanding will find success.