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December 15, 2011

Conquering the weight battle
If you struggle with weight issues, then I want you to know I understand. I’ve dealt with weight control most of my life. In fact, food too often has been a source of comfort for me when I am overwhelmed.

It is a daily struggle to make wise choices and not give up on what the Lord has for me. But through the right focus on conquering the weight battle, God is now showing me other areas I need to tackle. I am finding the opportunity to encourage others through this journey as well.

Has it been easy? Absolutely not.

I have been my own worst enemy through the years and have tried almost every diet book and eating plan available. I did lose weight in my mid-20s with diet pills, but I didn’t make lifestyle changes so the weight came back. Even my mother’s concern for my health because of my weight didn’t help. It just added to my defeated feeling.

I knew I should be a good steward of the body and life the Lord allowed me to live, but following through with that was not easy. I learned I could not do it on my own but I could with the Lord’s help.

In February of this year, I saw an article in The Alabama Baptist that has allowed me to connect all the dots. It was about the Body 4 Believers (www.facebook.com/pages/Body-4-Believers/180324178672325) eating plan.

At first, I thought, “OK here we go again.” But I downloaded the plan that day and decided to try it. I did not tell anyone I was on the plan and took small daily steps toward better choices.

The plan was not extreme, nor complicated. It was helpful and dealt with everyday food.

And while it is not a diabetic program, it does work well for me as a diabetic because it is designed to control the way the body processes food, resulting in less sugar spikes.

I have not reached my ideal weight, but, with the loss of 53 pounds, I am well on my way.

Just know you are the only one who can make choices as to your health in regard to weight and fitness.

I encourage you to never give up because Christ never gave up on us.

Sharron Atkinson
Secretary, Bluff Park Baptist
Church, Hoover


Thanks for attempting to capture what can be a difficult subject for print (Nov. 17 issue, “Healing a hurting heart”).

My brother, Mark, died on Halloween. He was 56 and was taken by a sudden and massive heart attack. He leaves a wife of 32 years and four children.

Mark had pastored Zion Baptist Church in Brownsville, Tenn., for the last 16 years. They had launched a new discipleship initiative that Mark and his wife, Lisa, wrote. Mark led 15 men through, and they are now leading 30 men. Twelve women just started. Mark was leading eight new men through. The deacons have stepped in to continue that work. Three other churches in the area began using the material this year. Mark finished well.

I had the privilege of leading the graveside service. I am thankful we had been working together on polishing his writing. No regrets and nothing unsaid. I loved him dearly.

Joe Conway
North American
Mission Board


From the Twitterverse
Ed Stetzer (president of LifeWay Research) — Too much to do and really need to catch up on some things. Gotta say “no” more. Sigh.

The Daniel Plan (Health program through Rick Warren and Saddleback Church in California) — Make sure you’re drinking enough water! Water helps detoxify, keep you feeling fuller, and is essential to great health!


Read your column “Healing a hurting heart” (in the Nov. 17 issue). I am encouraged by your empathetic heart towards others, and I wanted to share a song with you — “Blessings” by Laura Story. It relates to heartache and helps keep a godly perspective on trials.

And here is a Bible verse for you from Daniel 10:12 — “Then he (Gabriel) said to me, ‘Do not fear, Daniel, for from the first day that you set your heart to understand, and to humble yourself before your God, your words were heard; and I have come because of your words.’”

Anna Price


The CD “Every Falling Tear” by Matt Hammitt (lead singer of Sanctus Real) is one I would recommend. It is based on what God has revealed to him the last year as he has a son who was born with a heart disease.

Chris Mills
Alabama Baptist State Board of Missions

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