I am writing this article because I am aware of the deep suffering and depression that being overweight causes in some people. They actually have a disgusted feeling of themselves. This can lead to psychological stress. They want very much to lose weight but just can’t. Again and again they decide to go on a diet but just can’t stay on it and fail once more.

Some have a psychological problem that causes them to overeat. Others have a low metabolism and can’t eat much at all without gaining weight. If a person can eat 100 or 200 more calories than another person this can make a big difference. Exercise may help some.

It is important to try to get this extra weight off as it is a health hazard. It could lead to painful joints, diabetes, hypertension, low self esteem, etc. But to those who just can’t get that extra weight off, they should learn to be content—“For I have learned, in whatsoever state I am in, therewith to be content” (Phil. 4:11). “But godliness with contentment is great gain” (I Tim. 6:6). While we are in this world there will be a lot of frustration. Some people are lame or paralyzed, minus a limb, diseased, blind, deaf or other things. Would one of these be easier to deal with than being overweight?

I once knew someone who would actually make a promise to God not to eat when something delicious was tempting her. This is taking advantage of God for superficial things. Some ask if it is all right to pray to God for help with the problem of overeating. We have to consider our motive.

Is our main reason for desiring to be thin so we can look nice? There is nothing wrong with this, but we can make too much of this. Is pride a factor here? “Favor is deceitful, beauty is vain, but a woman that fears the Lord, she shall be praised” (Prov. 31:30). Proverbs 31:10 to end the chapter tells us what is really important for a woman.

Now to those who don’t have a weight problem, try to be understanding of someone who does have a weight problem. “Put on therefore as the elect of God, holy and beloved, bowels of mercy, kindness, humbleness of mine, meekness and long-suffering” (Col. 3:12). “And above all these things put on charity, which is the bond of perfectness” (I Cor. 3:14). “And now abideth faith, hope, charity, the greatest of these is charity” (I Cor. 13:13). Children especially can be cruel to someone overweight. This ought not to be.

So let us be content and be thankful in all things. Make the most of what you have. “Let the peace of God rule in your hearts to the which ye also are called in one body; and be ye thankful” (Col. 3:15).

“In everything give thanks for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you” (I Thes. 5:18).


Do not be like those “…whose God is their belly, and whose glory is in their shame, who mind earthly things” (Phil. 3:19).

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Editorial, November 2021: Catechism Season

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