Have you ever been somewhere that made you realize that our actions aren’t always the gentlest for ourselves and the world around us?
Today I was working out when I saw something that made me extremely sad. A young gal and her mother came in to workout. I am not sure how old or young this gal was but I don’t think she was comfortable being at this major workout place and especially since she would clearly be labeled as “overweight.” At one point, I looked over and was pretty sure I saw her eyes welling up with tears. I found myself trying to focus on my own workout and not focus on her. But at one point, I heard words that I cannot erase from my mind. One of the woman was on the floor doing a workout move when she simply said, “I have fallen and I cannot get up.” I know that those words weren’t supposed to mean anything but I could see how they cut to the core of this young gal. Oh how we need to be not just “gentle” with ourselves but with our actions and especially with each other.
In so many ways, I saw myself in this young gal. Ever since I can remember I have been the overweight girl. I have found myself being picked last for the team in gym class. I have seen the looks from others that I am not as pretty as the other girl. I have seen the hurt in my own eyes as those mean words cut to my very core. And so I wish that I could say so many things to this young gal that was working out tonight.
And if I could this is what I would say: Dear Child of God—You are beautiful. You have been “fearfully and wonderfully made.” I am proud of you for taking the time to workout with your mom. I am proud of you for even stepping foot in this building. I am proud of you for continuing to workout even as I saw the tears welling up in your eyes. I am proud of all that you can…and will accomplish. I know this isn’t an easy place to be. But please know that God is always with you. God promises to never leave you or forsake you. I used to be you. I used to be picked on and teased for so many reasons. And now I can look at those bullies and say to them, “Look at me now! Look at what I have accomplished.” You will always be a beloved child of God; always loved and cherished by God. Never forget that promise!—Love a sister in Christ.
And as I write these words, I am reminded that we need to be “gentle” with our actions and the world around us. By being gentle, I believe the world will be a much more welcoming, peaceful and hopeful place.
Tara, this is so touching. My sister who was morbidly obese fell in a parking lot one day and no one, absolutely NO ONE went to help her. It was horrible. When she told me my heart broke. She has since had weight loss surgery and has done very, very well but that day has stuck with her all through the years. I hope you get an opportunity to personally minister to this gal. xo
Thank You, Susan! I am so sad to read about your sister's incident. That is so horrible! My heart breaks for her and so many.
Weight – the Scared Cow of America! Sometimes it is mind boggling how much emphasis we put on it – but those words are so powerful, not just for the overweight but for all – and how heart wrenching when we all fell as if we have fallen down and can't get up. We do need to be more gentle with one another – I will remember that. And Susan Shipe – oh my how awful about your sister's experience. Amazing how that could happen in this country.
Debra, it really is mind boggling, isnt it?!?! We do need to be more gentle with each other indeed.
I too understand the pain that young lady was feeling all too well. I have been overweight almost my entire life and have been on and off diets and exercise plans since about age 8 or so. I have been bullied — both verbally and physically because of my weight. I have been the butt of practical jokes because of my weight that wound up crushing my spirit (being told that a boy likes you or is going to ask you out and then finding out it's a horribly cruel joke). I have seen the derisive glances and outright stares as I've gone to gyms and have shed many tears over that and then some. I, too, have fallen down in a public place and had no one offer to help me. I also know that there are many, many people like me and it is heartbreaking knowledge to know that so many have shared in this struggle. God bless you and your sweet tender heart, my friend! You are a beautiful child of God and I am so very glad that I know you! (((((BIG hugs)))))
I have felt similarly. People can be so cruel. And I too have shed many tears for myself…and others. Thank you my friend. Hugs back at ya!!!
That makes me so sad. Even if you weren't able to share that message with her you can pray it over her. I am sure it was no coincidence that you witnessed what you did and maybe you will cross paths again.
Natalie, it makes me so sad too. Maybe our paths will cross again one day.