“With the arrival of Jesus, the Messiah, that fateful dilemma is resolved. Those who enter into Christ’s being-here-for-us no longer have to live under a continuous, low-lying black cloud. A new power is in operation. The Spirit of life in Christ, like a strong wind, has magnificently cleared the air, freeing you from a fated lifetime of brutal tyranny at the hands of sin and death.” Romans 8:1-2

True confession time: Several years back, I lost a LOT of weight. As in, nearly 100 lbs. over three years. I never felt better, or more confident, in my life! Normally photo-shy, I didn’t mind at all getting in front of the camera. Clothes shopping is a joy when you go down as many sizes as I did!

I was determined not to be a statistic. I wasn’t going to be one of the majority that loses weight, only to put it back on. I was going to make it work!

Fast-forward to today. I’ve gained…not all…but some of the weight back. I’ve put enough of it back on that I’ve gone up a size in my clothes, but more importantly, that my self-confidence has plummeted. I hate having my picture made again, and it’s difficult to enjoy clothes shopping when you feel like nothing looks good on you!

I have a hard time even looking at myself in the mirror. Instead of proud, I feel ashamed. I could go back to the tried-and-true methods that worked the first time, but it feels hopeless. How can I face people who thought I was so great for losing all that weight and admit that I’ve failed? And the longer I let this go on, the harder it is to deal with.

Maybe you have a similar problem. Maybe it isn’t weight gain, but more of a relationship or spiritual issue. You were doing so well, but then something happened – you slipped, stumbled – and now you can’t seem to get back on the right path. The longer you go without making things right, the more of an obstacle that first step seems.

I’m here to tell you that it’s never too late. It’s never too late for me to return to those things which helped me before, and it’s never too late for you to ask for forgiveness – whether it’s from a friend, a family member, or God – and turn your life around.

The first step is always the hardest, trust me! Let’s pray for each other as we all endeavor to take it and move forward.