The Physical

Had my first physical in 10 years yesterday.  There’s something inherently frightening about hearing your doctor say, “How old are you?  You should come in next month for a physical!”  A Mr. Mortality is holding on line 1 for Byron Davis…

Everything’s fine, except for the fact that I really must lose 25 pounds.  It’s been one of those back-burner-I’ll-get-to-it-when-life-calms-down plans I’ve had for a good 7 years now.  I’ve done tons of starting/stopping with lifestyle change, and all I can say for sure now is I’m starting again.  Here’s the plan:

  1. Set alarm for 5 AM to allow for a brisk, 30-minute neighborhood walk and some journaling time before JP wakes up.  Every day.
  2. Cut out the Coke.  Every day.
  3. Make and take a lunch to work.  Every day (well, except for Tuesdays which are staff meeting/lunch days).
  4. No eating after 7:30 PM.  Every day.

I’ll track my weight loss here as I go–I weighed 192 at the office yesterday (that’s a 29.2 BMI).  I’m shooting for 160 pounds and 24-ish BMI.

The really interesting thing that happened at the office was a conversation I had with a lady who sat next to me in the hallway while I was waiting for my turn on the x-ray machine.  Middle forties, pleasant, wearing a t-shirt that advertised one of the more prominent local Baptist churches, and for some reason she was carrying one of those hospital gowns.  Naturally, I made a crack about “Brought you’re own gown, eh?” and we laughed a bit.

And then, out of the blue, she says to me, “I’m really having a hard day.  My 18-year-old daughter moved out 2 days ago to live with her boyfriend’s family.  They’re pot-smokers.  We don’t know what to do.”  As I turned to respond, the nurse called me into the x-ray room and the conversation was over just like that.

What breaks my heart about this is that 1) her daughter’s being stupid in a way that can really mess up her life and her family and 2) this lady is so desperate for a sympathetic ear that she would confide in a perfect stranger.  Frankly, I’m more concerned about the latter issue than I am about the former.

If I weren’t already a pastor in a Baptist church, I’d ask, “What’s going on in that church where this lady doesn’t have an authentic community in which she can confide and feel support?”  But since I am a pastor in a Baptist church, I already know the answer to the “What’s going on” question:

  • good, solid Bible teaching
  • more good, solid Bible teaching
  • a little extra good, solid Bible teaching for really good people who want a little extra credit

If churches can’t be authentic communities where real support is available and real love is shown, what’s the point?  Is it really just about doctrine and making sure everybody believes the right stuff?

On my way out from the x-ray lab, I passed the lady and got her daughter’s name.

Pray for Jessica.


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