I’m going to talk about myself for a minute.
I’m a twenty-six year old blond-haired blue-eyed girl who has been blessed with wonderful genes. I’m naturally thin, I have a great metabolism, I’m generally healthy and energetic. I do have a strong conviction that part of my obedience to God is taking care of my body, so I try to watch what I eat and exercise regularly. I am, in fact, the kind of freak who gets a little crazy if she doesn’t get a workout in.
I’m telling you all of this in the purpose of illustrating a point, not bragging. So, following that, let’s assume that I have friends who are overweight and generally not as healthy as me. Let’s assume that at least some of those friends are Christians. Let’s say that I took what I feel as a very strong conviction (that God wants me to be healthy, and caring for my body is Worshipping Him in that regard) and applied it to my friends.
I can imagine a conversation like this:
ME: Friend A, why aren’t you worshipping God?
A: excuse me?
ME: You’re kind of… fat. That’s an affront to God and His will for your life.
A: Says who? You?
ME: Well, I’ve had these personal struggles with body identity, and I’ve heard God’s voice really strongly in this area.
A: You are totally bent.
ME: You’re rejecting God’s word for you.
A: Yeah, sweetie, I’m rejecting YOUR word for me.
And in this totally imaginary conversation, I’d actually take Friend A’s side. Why? Because who knows what is going on in her life. Maybe she’s been struggling for years with some other sin, and is desperately trying to lead a life pleasing to God. And by coming out of left field with a commandment that I do NOT know is meant for A, I could cause her incredible frustration and maybe even a loss of faith.
Which is why I keep my convictions to myself. Because not every girl on this planet is a blond-haired blue-eyed genetically blessed fitness nut. And I don’t think that every one was meant to be, either, or else God would have made us a little more alike. By following God’s heart for my own life I worship him, just as by following God’s word for YOUR life YOU worship him. And I may be called to be a wife and mother and writer and yoga fanatic, and you may be called to be something very different. And part of God’s will for you may even be that you don’t get stir crazy if you miss your morning Pilates or that you do indulge in a few extra brownies from time to time.
I think God enjoys our uniqueness. I think that he loves the fact that we are so different. I think he designed it that way for a reason. I don’t think he wants us to be able to write down our personal revelations and mass market them and take the mystery and excitement out of seeking his will. He wants us to each be completely devoted, hearing his voice, changing ourselves.
He really does not want me to corner Friend A and accuse her of not loving him- I can promise you that.