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Obese Christians
Feelings of Inferiority   

Q. I'm about 70 lbs. overweight and I constantly feel like I'm inferior to others. I don't want to go outside my home and I don't like people to see me in church. It seems like critics of overweight people are becoming meaner these days. Next, overweight people will be fined for living. Suggestions?


Always Someone Better

We really do "shoot our own," don't we? I don't care how pretty or handsome you are, how intelligent or how gifted or how young, there is always someone prettier, someone thinner, someone smarter, someone younger and someone more gifted. I guess the sooner we all learn to accept this fact the better off we'll be.

My advice is for you to go to church and remember that those who are critical of you will account for their very own words (Matt. 12:36). They will also account for all of their thoughts (Ro. 2:15-16) and all of their deeds, too (2 Cor.5:10).

Every Word - Thought - and Deed

Their cruel, critical spirit is their problem - But you have a different problem…

No Excuses for Not Assembling with Believers

I can understand your feelings of inferiority. However, the Bible is very clear on the subject of assembling with other believers. Many elderly people also do not attend a church with a lot of youngsters.


Because the older ones are uncomfortable with the young set. Many young people will not attend a church with older people - same reason.

Commandment to Assemble

I could list dozens of "good" reasons to excuse my being absent from church. But, we are not the ones in charge here. We are commanded to be with each other. We are to bear each others burdens and pain. That is how we get stronger. We believe you may need to check your heart in light of God's Word.

God sees the Heart

God doesn't see things the way we do. Scripture says:

"the Lord said to Samuel, 'Do not look at his appearance or his stature, because I have rejected him. Man does not see what the Lord sees, for man sees what is visible, but the Lord sees the heart'" (1 Samuel 16:7).

This is a good verse to memorize and cherish in your heart.

Praise God - not Men

Don't forget why we go to church in the first place, too. We attend church to glorify and praise God - not each other. God should be our first focus, second to none. We are there to "be filled with the Spirit, addressing one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing and making melody to the Lord…"(Eph. 5:18-20).

I Can't Escape Me

Another thing to remember is that no matter where you go - you can't escape yourself! When I take a shower there I am. When I do yard work I'm right there. I'm present when I drive my car and when I shop for groceries. I can't escape me when I burn the dinner rolls or say something dumb to the guests. When the doctor's scale says I'm forty pounds overweight I can't leave the premises (as much as I'd like to). I have to stand right there and hear the bad news. I just can't escape "Me" - much as I'd like!

Can't Escape You Either

Since I can't escape me, I guess I'd better learn to live with myself just as I am right now. In fact, our Lord says something similar:

Can't Escape Him

"Where can I go to escape Your Spirit? Where can I flee from Your presence? If I go up to heaven, You are there. If I make my bed in Sheol, You are there. If I live at the eastern horizon or settle at the western limits, even there Your hand will lead me. Your right hand will hold on to me. If I say, 'Surely the darkness will hide me, and the light around me will become night' - even the darkness is not dark to You. The night shines like the day - darkness and light are alike to You" (Psalm 139:7-12, HCSB).

This means that if I am eating chocolates in front of the T.V. God is right there. If I'm stuffing my face with peanuts my life is an "open book" before Him.


No matter what I do I cannot escape God!

This is a valuable concept to grasp - for each one of us. No matter what we do we cannot escape ourselves, nor can we escape God. We need to keep it in mind as we go about our daily activities.

What Really Matters?

Frankly, we should try to forget those who negatively judge us. In the end these things don't count anyway.

What counts?

Here is what the wisest man on earth, King Solomon, said:

"When all has been heard, the conclusion of the matter is: fear God and keep His commands, because this is for all humanity. For God will bring every act to judgment, including every hidden thing, whether good or evil" (Ecclesiastes 12: 13-14).

Focusing on God will give you the desire to please Him. What other people think will become less important to you. And what you feel and care about now will also change as you focus on His Word and learning to love His people.

In the end only God counts anyway. He is the only one we strive to please. He is the only one who remembers us in death. Our great grandchildren don't even remember us. So, pleasing Him is all that matters - not the naysayers and ridiculers in church. They will account for their own behaviors. But, you and I will account for ours - before God alone.


Suggested Reading:

Freeman, Criswell. 2004. God's survival guide. Nashville, TN: Nelson.

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