I love the name of this background layout, "All that glitters..." I have spent the last three hours trying to carefully measure out a beautiful setting to be a place where I can speak to the world. I wanted it to be pretty. But as I will likely have pictures of food and other things as we travel on our way I didn't want it to be too distracting. Finally I landed on this little gem. Maybe it's the girl in me but I was dazzled by all that sparkle! But it's so ironic. The saying, "All that glitters, is not gold" teaches the idea that just because it looks good on the outside does not mean that it is really valuable on the inside. Not all of the things that people typically want in life are really worth attaining. Some things seem valuable or seem like they would satisfy you, but they really won't. The reason that is so ironic is the lesson in not judging a book by it's cover is sort of what has led me to this place. I feel very much like many many people judge me by my "cover". They look at me at first glance and see a young woman who is overweight and that is the sum total of their opinion of me. Every impression they have of me is formed based off of that first glance and tainted by it. I long to be healthy, fit and active living life with the youth and vitality that I have missed out on the last decade and not squandering another second and I desperately seek people to see me. The real me. I do need to change my facade in order to get a second look. But I am not doing it for them. I can also look at the reverse of the question and then ask, what is gold, what is something worth striving for, we know it's not the world's approval but what then. Besides seeking health for the above reasons and to set a high standard and model the best example possible for my family, to care for them in a way that is best for them (even when they may not like it) and to achieve greater security in my health that I am minimizing my risk to many illnesses. But primarily what is gold to me is this; 1 Peter 1:7 says These have come so that your faith--of greater worth than gold, which perishes even though refined by fire--may be proved genuine and may result in praise, glory and honor when Jesus Christ is revealed. I have been through many fires already and come out on the other side and my faith is always stronger for it. The more I allow God to work through me the more I know I will be refined. I have some talents that don't get tapped into much and I want to share them on a bigger scale. I believe I am a gifted writer, I believe I am a talented and creative cook (I dare not say chef!) and I believe that I have a strong knowledge of exercise and health due to my career as a physical therapist. Therefore as I embark on this new chapter of my faith journey I am stepping out, using these gifts as I learn and struggle and grow and maybe I can help, inspire, encourage others along the way. Maybe we all can find what truly glitters, more radiant than the sun, living the life God intended us to live to the fullest. The title of this blog has been my absolute favorite passage of scripture my whole life, I read it in front of my high school class when I graduated as we set out crossing that tentative milestone. What I really loved about it though is that someone like Paul could say boldly "Not that I have already obtained all this...". I don't know about you but I will probably always feel lightyears behind Paul, so following humbly in his footsteps "I press on toward the goal..." I hope you will join me!