My Journey So Far: Steps Towards Perfection in Health and Holiness {and Why It Matters}

Perfection. 

Why use that word? Well, I do not think it means what you think it means.

You see, perfection as it is described today is the state of being flawless and without fault. However, if we look at the Biblical definition we can see that it is possible to be perfect, or “whole and complete.” And wholeness and completeness are what we are aiming for (Philippians 3:12-15). So while perfection is our goal, progress is what we are looking for in our day to day lives.

So… I’m sharing my journey in health and holiness and writing about my progress in these areas so far and how I got there. I’m hoping this will be helpful and encouraging to others trying to improve their own health and holiness! I will be including details of what I am eating, what workouts I am doing right now, and what I am filling my spiritual self with to get results.

This is important because we cannot neglect our spiritual or our physical bodies. We weren’t just made spiritual. We were made physical, spiritual, emotional, intellectual and social beings, and you neglect any one of these to the detriment of all the others.

Hence the name “Happy Healthy Holy Home,” and a blog dealing with faith, food, fitness, and family. 🙂

So I hope this is able to help someone else who is not feeling so great or not sure what direction to take to get healthier or holier.

Before I go on, I want you to realize that it’s not all about aesthetics in regards to health (though that does help with your confidence), and it’s not about shame over your body. It’s about feeling great in order to feel better about yourself so you can better serve and love your husband, family, and your God!

So here it is…

Health

Though I do try to eat healthy and choose better options when it comes to food most of the time, I still found that I was steadily gaining weight over my time at Four Seas College. Two years of mostly sitting on my rear and studying. Great for my soul–but not for my body!

Okay, so I could have done more but I didn’t. I made all the excuses. Nothing I can do about that now but move forward!

Then we went to America for a month and I really blew it.  I tried to eat gluten free/grain free when I had the chance… but I let my love of sugar and fried foods get the better of me. Again, I could have done more. I gained weight and hit a number I hadn’t hit in a long time!

Usually I don’t care about what the scales have to say, but when I get to a certain weight and I know it isn’t muscle–I know something has to change. Besides, I couldn’t fit or feel right in most of my clothes, I had chronic stomach pains, and I felt lethargic all the time. I knew I had to change something.

Thank you to the beautiful, generosity of my dear friend, Kate Martin, I went under her guidance to give me some direction and accountability in my weight loss journey.

After all, it’s so much easier when you have a plan and someone to help you stick to it. 😉

I started my journey while I was still travelling, and actually begun to see results while on the road. This meant choosing the right things at take away places and moving as much as possible despite long car trips and strict departure times. This helped me to discover that really there are no excuses, though I did try to make them all previously. I will write another post on how to make positive changes and better choices in your eating habits while travelling and eating out sometime in the near future!

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When I got back I straight away stocked up my fridge with heaps of veggies and natural, whole foods–resolved to change my habits.

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I can’t put all the details of everything I did in this post, obviously–but basically lots of whole foods, no grains, and limited sugar and dairy. Lots of healthy fats, meat, and green veggies. With lots (well, 4-5 45 minute sessions a week) of weight lifting with the occasional HIIT (high intensity interval training).

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But yeah… they may have been a few little splurges. That, below, is my brownie gluten-free chocolate cake. Hey, no one’s perfect. I said I was striving for perfection, remember? 😉

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Honestly, it’s been tough. I’ve been faced with many bumps in the road – including a mild shoulder injury. I’ve had to watch my husband eat many things I would LOVE to eat in front of me, and even prepare two sets of meals almost every night. I haven’t always been perfect, but I have been fairly consistent. When I fail I just jump back on and try not to beat myself up.

And it’s paid off. How? Well, while I’m still on the journey, after just over 2 months of clean eating (with the occasional splurge) and weight training, these are my results: down 4 kilos, lost around 50 centimetres off my torso and hips and now have no more stomach pains! 

That’s my favourite. More energy and feeling confident trumps aesthetics for me!

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I have to give another shout out to Kate Martin whose plan and guidance I am following, as well as Zoe of ZOMT for her ready help with encouragement and motivation. Find people to take the journey with, or who have taken the journey before. It will make your way easier! This applies to every area of life. ❤

Please realize that I’m not where I want to be yet, but I am enjoying the process and feeling great! I’m not about trying to lose all my fat in a month or anything. I don’t believe in starvation or fad diets. I’m about creating sustainable habits for life.

I know Paul was talking about his spiritual life in the following passage, but we can apply this to every area of our lives.

“Not as though I had already attained, either were already perfect: but I follow after, if that I may apprehend that for which also I am apprehended of Christ Jesus. Brethren, I count not myself to have apprehended: but this one thing I do, forgetting those things which are behind, and reaching forth unto those things which are before, I press toward the mark for the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus” (Philippians 3:12-14).

I haven’t got everything figured out yet, and I certainly haven’t been perfect, but I’m working things out and seeing progress.

Striving and seeing progress–not perfection–is all that matters.

Both physically and spiritually.

Holiness

As Paul said: “while bodily training is of some value, godliness is of value in every way, as it holds promise for the present life and also for the life to come” (1 Timothy 4:8 ESV).

So while I am happy with my progress as it relates to my health and help others to do the same whenever I can–I am more interested in striving to see myself (and others) progress as it relates to spiritual matters.  I’m interested in all the best ways to live my life, and that most definitely means improving my spirituality so I can love and serve God and my fellow man in the best possible way.

What am I doing to improve myself spiritually? 

Well, I could certainly always do more, but here is what I am doing right now.

First of all, I am furthering my studies with the Memphis School of Preaching Ongoing Spiritual Training Program. Right now we are studying Christian Evidences with Dan Cates. It’s really interesting! Both my husband and I are firm believers in engaging in a structured learning environment where you are accountable to someone – which is why both he and I went through a 2-year Bible school and are still both enrolled in online training (me with M.O.S.T., he in a Masters Course with Freed-Hardeman).

If you can be disciplined enough to do it all yourself–power to you! It’s all about knowing your strengths and weaknesses and making Bible study something that you can do and make a sustainable habit.

I write for my blog as well, obviously. This keeps my mind on spiritual matters and allows me to share my experiences and discoveries with others–making me re-study topics and delve into the Bible for myself to make sure that what I am saying is accurate! It also helps me to think of topics in a practical way. I don’t want to leave anyone with a why, and a what, but no how.

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I also listen to podcasts and watch Christian videos while I am preparing things or cleaning up when I can… because preparing food and cleaning up takes a while, as you all know. You’ll be amazed how much you get through by listening to just a little at a time. And yes, my iPad is balancing on my food processor. I have a very little kitchen, so I improvise. 😉

Here is Cindy Colley giving her insights into Acts from her Digging Deeper study. I also love listening to podcasts from The Light Network. There are so many great resources out there! {Also below the screen is my cranberry and coconut grain free granola I’m about to put on natural yoghurt. Yum}

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I also make myself available to teach ladies and children whenever I can. I try to never say “no.” Thankfully, with my husband being a travelling speaker, I get quite a few opportunities! I am so blessed! This also means that I have to study, in order to know what I am talking about. I almost don’t have to think about studying, because there always seems to be a need for me to study!

I also have started making videos based on Bible truths in my spare time to keep me studying and improve on my speaking skills.

Tip: Try to create need to do things in your life and watch yourself grow to love to do it.

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Again, in this area I am certainly not perfect. I wish I was more disciplined. Sometimes I get behind on my lessons. Sometimes I forget to apply it to my life and act selfishly when I have just taught a lesson in selfishness. However, these are things that have helped me, and I have seen progress. I can now study Paul’s writings, discern meanings for myself and write lessons. I couldn’t do this before! Hopefully what has helped me will be able to help someone else. ❤

So that’s me! How about you? What are you currently doing for your physical and spiritual health?

If you have a story, please feel free to post the link/story below in the comments! 🙂

Please feel free to contact me here if you have any questions!

Connect with me and keep up to date with my latest recipes and ramblings.

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{Linked to Make a Difference Monday; Modest Monday}

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