After having lost 145 pounds I am now pretty much in maintenance mode. Still throughout my life I have lost significant weight and then regained it. Although never as much as this. So I am well aware of the fact that to maintain my current weight takes effort. This year, I have been successful at this, but it also takes a lot more effort than I previously imagined.
Just to maintain my current weight I am still doing intermittent fasting with usually only one meal a day. This combined with daily exercise, usually some walking and at least 15 miles on bike. So maintenance for me has meant maintaining the daily regimen I used to loose that weight.
Thinking about this it seems to me to be quite parallel to the spiritual life. You might overcome some vices and grow in virtue, yet you can’t just rest on this. It also takes a daily effort to nourish my spiritual life and love of Christ. You just can’t have a “cheat day” as some call it in reference to dieting. This also takes more effort than I might have previously expected. You just can’t tread water in the spiritual life.
I now have a deeper appreciation for the metaphors St. Paul uses in references to athletes. That it takes continuous training and perseverance. As an avid cyclist now (never thought I would be that guy), I now look forward each day to my ride. To measure distance and speed and to see the positive effects of this. I wish I had that same “look-forwardness” when it comes to my efforts in regard to the spiritual life.
Still I am carving out the time for scripture study and prayer and am starting to enjoy scripture reading along side a commentary. I would be happy and almost proud with my progress, if this verse didn’t keep me a little better grounded.
“Say: we are unworthy servants, we have only done what was our duty” (Luke 17: 10)