A recent read in Philippians ended with this note in my Bible's margin: Constantly check the intentions and motives of my heart.
I've been wanting to lose weight for a while now. But it's only since I got back from the States that I've been more intentional about it. Developing healthier eating habits, making wiser food choices, going for walks.
I've gotten into a habit of weighing myself several times a week. The fact that my scale weighs me in kilograms bothers me some. While I can use my trusty calculator to convert the number I see into pounds, when I initially look down at the scale, the number means absolutely nothing. But its position relative to the number that was there the last time I checked is enough to make me feel like I'm progressing on my "get healthier" journey.
Anyway, my scale-stepping became part of my morning routine. Not everyday. But a few mornings a week. So what does this have to do with Philippians and motives?
Well, you see... I was fasting for a while. And about halfway through, I caught myself stepping on the scale one morning and considering my progress. (Gasp!) "Consider the intentions of your heart," I thought. When fasting became -- even for that ever-so-brief moment -- a step towards my weight-loss goal, my intentions were way off.
I literally moved the scale out of sight. I knew that if I continued to see it each morning as I stepped out of the shower, I was going to continue to be tempted to step on it. It took up residence with the dust bunnies under my claw-footed bathtub.
And I refocused my heart on what I was really aiming to accomplish with my fast.
Now when I see my dusty-edged scale, I'm reminded to check my motives. At least my mind will have something else to ponder as I try to figure out what the numbers on the scale mean.