As long as I can remember there have been “ways” to lose weight. One of my earliest memories was Richard Simmons and his commercials for Jazzercise, as well as ads for weight loss pills in the ’80s that promoted giving you a tapeworm, that would eat up to 1200 calories a day, so you could eat what you want and still lose weight. Don’t believe me that this was a thing? Google it.
Americans are obsessed with quick lose weight schemes. The top three New Year's resolutions?...to lose weight, workout more, and eat healthy. Today we are still looking for the solution to quick weight loss. There are things like Paleo, Keto, Beach Body, as well as hundreds of other “plans” to help you lose weight and look good. Many diets today involve healthy eating and requires those trying to lose weight to keep track of what they are eating. Whether it is counting calories, fats, carbs or proteins or simply counting the meals you eat in a day and when you eat them.
One of the ways I have tried to lose weight, off and on, over the past few years is macronutrients. Macronutrients is a program where you calculate the amount of fat, protein, and carbs you should have each day and then try to consume that exact amount each day. The more weight you lose, the more your numbers change. For instance, I am supposed to consume 242g of carbs, 240g of protein and 71g of fat...every day. It is a lot and takes a lot of meal preparation and calculations to make sure you get the exact numbers you need. The thing I like about it is your day is 24 hours long. If today I come up 40g of protein short and 100g of carbs over my plan, I don’t cut something or add it tomorrow. A new day means exactly that, a fresh start. I can’t fix what I did or didn’t do yesterday, all I can do is start all over today, and try my best to hit my numbers today.
I mention this as I feel like we often do this in life. We like to keep track of the things in our lives to make us "feel good." The things that people did to us and the things we did to them. At the end of the day, we look at how we treated people compared to how we were treated. And we add up the score and see where we stand. If how we acted today wasn’t as “good” as we think we should have acted, often we try to make up for it the next day. Likewise, if someone treats us poorly, we hope the next time we see them it will be different, but often we have our scorecards and can't let go of what happened in the past. We allow it to dictate how we see and treat that person going forward. It is strange how a single encounter, good or bad, can determine if we give someone the benefit of the doubt or not.
What if it wasn’t that way. What if we lived life one day at a time. For 24 hours. What happened yesterday, happened, and we can’t change it, but what we can change is today.
The other day I had one of those parenting days where one of my children just wouldn’t stop. The listening skills didn’t exist. The non-stop antagonizing their siblings. One of those days that you think they are doing it just to make you angry. As the day had grown long, I had finally had it. I lost my temper, yelled and went into a “dad monologue” with all three kids having to sit through my ramblings for what probably seemed like 2 hours, but in reality, was like 5 minutes. When we got home, there was to be no electronics, just brushing teeth and going straight to bed. However, you know that didn't happen. The moment we walked in the door the negotiations started. I thought I was going to lose my mind.
Finally, after everyone was in bed, I had time to reflect on my actions, and how I let one thing roll into another, and into another, until it ended where it did. The next morning, when I woke the kids up for school. I went in, climbed into bed, and said, “I am sorry for my actions yesterday. I know you did some things wrong yesterday, and we will still need to deal with them, but I shouldn’t have acted the way I did. I will try to be better today.” You know what I got in return? “It is ok dad; I forgive you. Today will be a better day for both of us.”
If you think I am making a point about how I am a great dad and always say the right things, you are misreading this blog, because that is not what happened at all. What I am trying to say is that even when you get so angry that you go into “monologue mode” either internally or externally, every day is a new day. Now I still had to deal with things that had happened the day before, but I didn't let it define my relationship or my actions. We often let what has happened in the past control how we act or treat others in the future. We often like to say that “other people” made me do it, but other people don’t control us, not our actions or our emotions. We are the only ones who control our actions. We are the only ones who have control over what we say, do, and how we treat others.
When tracking macros the only reason you track, is to make sure that you are staying on track to reach the goal that you have set. You don’t track your numbers to be better than anyone else. You do it to make yourself better and to become the person you want to be. As Christians, we should have an idea of how we should live our lives and how we should treat each other. Jesus tells us that he is the way...and living a life as he prescribed is the only way to live a spiritually healthy life. We just celebrated Easter, a day that changed all others, as it gave us a new beginning. Paul tells us that we are no longer a slave to sin, but a new creation, the old is gone, and the new is here!
Today is a new day. We have 24 hours to do the best we can. If we mess up, which we will, the good news is tomorrow is a new day. So the question we have to ask ourselves is, will we continue to hold on to things in the past or live into the newness that we have as Easter people?