Have you ever given one hundred percent of yourself to something? I’m talking about no shortcuts, no cheats, no bending the rules, but simply selling out for something bigger with everything you possess.
This world is packed full of distractions, which become hurdles in the race called life. Every time you approach a hurdle, you likely tend to slow down or stop, and perhaps you walk around it. Yet were we designed for a hurdle to slow us down or to keep us from running the race? No! We were designed to blow over those hurdles. We were designed to invest one hundred percent from the start all the way to the finish!
We were designed to be overcomers. We were designed to sell out—to give it all. Have you lost your original design?
For several months I have been taking back my health by force. I started on October 14, 2014, after deciding in August to undertake this journey. I chose from the beginning to sell out to it—to devote my all and give one hundred percent.
Though I have followed through with this, it is not easy. I approach a hurdle every single day. One hurdle is the boring taste of my food. I’m hungry. I want to eat what I want to eat. I’m sick of Bailey telling me what to do. At times I find myself in a crunch, without any healthy snacks on me—so then what do I choose to do? Do I choose to hit a drive–through out of convenience, or do I buy a healthy snack?
Usually, once a week, I fully prep my meals. Each day I pack all my meals before I leave the house, so if I end up in a crunch, I have food to eat. And I am willing to eat a cold turkey burger or frozen turkey burger because I am supposed to do so. When you’re giving one hundred percent to something, you do it regardless of your immediate desires. You eat the frozen turkey burger; you eat the walnuts off of the ground when you drop them; you deviate sometimes from your family’s plans so you can drive home and retrieve the healthy snacks you forgot. You don’t
Macaroni and cheese may tempt you, or a slice of pizza—one pepperoni couldn’t hurt, right? Wrong! Caving to those cravings is not giving one hundred percent. Every bite I take, everything I do—if I don’t do it with excellence and commitment to my goals—always falls short of my one hundred percent.
There is more in me, and there is more in you, but we will never find it unless we are willing to offer our all.
So for those of you taking back your health, too, I want to push you today. There’s more in you, so find it! Give more; sacrifice more. Below I provide a few practical ideas, but be prepared: they will squeeze your comfort zone a bit.
Don’t go out of your way to make your food taste amazing. In other words, do not go out of your way to make food pleasurable; instead, change your view from food as entertainment and enjoyment to food as fuel. When you’re fueling your body, you fill it with the best fuel. When you’re pleasuring your body, however, you will tend to make compromises.
Don’t cheat yourself by taking nibbles of your kids’ food or eating a snack off-plan. Commit to this rule for four weeks. For four weeks, can you refrain from cheating? Maybe you should back up and try it for a day first; then try it for a week, for four weeks—and afterward for three months and six months at a time!
Don’t indulge in an extra helping of your allotted serving or approved meal. Instead, only eat precisely what your plan prescribes. Do what you’re told! Be an obedient follower because the most effective leaders are the most committed followers.
I believe you were called to lead and to influence nations. I believe there’s more in you. I believe you can push yourself further. After all, do you desire the best version of you? Or do you want only a so-so, wishy-washy you?
Do you want to be the you who gives your one hundred percent and succeeds, or do you want the you who is always cheating “just a little bit”—always selling yourself short? “Hey, I am engaged in my transformation … but I cheat a little.” Is this the witness and the testimony you want to carry?
People may push back against you when you offer one hundred percent. They may seem like critics, but I assure you, they will respect you—because they have probably never given one hundred percent to anything in their life. So don’t listen to them. Don’t listen to people’s criticisms. Bring excellence to the table and allow God to judge their criticisms.
How in the world, though, can we avoid living out of the temptations of our flesh but instead actually accomplish this goal? How can we accomplish one hundred percent in living, giving, and following?
Number one, this starts by taking every thought captive. The moment cheesecake or pizza starts to creep into your mind, you must stop intentionally. You need to say, “Stop! You know what? This is not my portion. I already have healthy, nourishing food to enjoy.” Turn your mind to what is wholesome and healthy: “I can walk with my kids now, and I can carry them on my shoulders. I lift them up and help them down safely. We won’t tumble or fall—because I’m strong.”
I choose strength over pleasure every day of the week. You simply must learn to take your thoughts captive.
Number two, it is truly vital for you to pray against temptation. I love when, the word of God tells us, Jesus told his disciples to pray against temptation. He told him this several times, yet they continued falling asleep while they were praying (Luke 22:45). We do this too: we fall sleep on the job. But we need to pray against this! We know Jesus was tempted, but He was never tempted to the point of sin; and I know if He overcame it, we can overcome it as well because His power for life—His resurrection power—lives in and for us.