For longer than I care to remember I have battled the numbers on the scale. I have always been very self-conscious of my weight and struggled to shed the needed pounds. Knowing it was not good for my body I tried to lose weight but it seemed that no matter what I did I couldn't get ride of it. So instead, I tried hiding my bulges with baggy clothing or using whatever was nearby to hide behind including pillows when I was sitting on a couch(even at home!) or standing behind chairs at the office. In desperate times, when no hiding places could be found, I would simply cross my arms thinking that if I covered it all no one would notice( how silly)!
It is difficult to be around so many girls who have wonderful figures while eating whatever they want. I'm the girl that gains a pound just walking past the bakery(can anyone else relate?). This excess weight has managed to destroy my self-esteem and leave me feeling both discouraged and defeated. There are no words that can adequately describe the frustration when looking at your reflection in the mirror and it not being even semi decent no matter which way you turn.
For the month of April I read the book Made to Crave by Lysa TerKeurst which discusses the concept of satisfying your deepest desire with God, not food. This has been one incredible book and an amazing month of God breaking through the lies of Satan and replacing them with the truth of His word. I wanted to share a few of them with you, maybe you can relate to some of them.
1. Eve craved what she focused on. We consume what we think about. And what we think about can consume us if we're not careful. This was an interesting thought. When I get a notification on my phone for a buy-one-get-one-free deal at my favorite restaurant I tend to be consumed for the rest of the day thinking about when I can go and redeem said coupon. There are times that I even get a little cranky if I am unable to go(very bad sign). I should be consumed with God and His word not with a coupon that will more than likely lead me to gain another pound or two! If I fill my heart and mind with the things of God it will profit me in so many ways.
2. Desperation leads to degradation. This was an eye opening truth for me and applicable to more than just the area of food. In the Bible, Esau sacrificed what was good[His Birthright] in the long term for what felt good[a bowl of porridge] in the short term. He gave up who he was in a moment of desperation. I can relate to this in so many ways. There have been times where I said to myself that I will not eat sweets then someone brings donuts to work(Dunkin' Donuts I might add) and I cave in. I chose to sacrifice my principle for a moment of pleasure, one that will leave me feeling guilty for the rest of the day and cause me to avoid stepping on the scale....again. Esau allowed his emotions to dictate his choices but I want to be someone who is ruled by the Spirit.
3. Becoming a woman of self-discipline honors God and helps me love the godly characteristic of self-control. If I were honest, this is the whole reason my clothes don't fit me anymore. I have never learned to be self-disipined or exercised self-control. Food controls me instead of me controlling my food choices. Instead of eating just one helping I devour the entire dish. Rather than reaching for a handful of carrots I eat a whole bag of potato chips. Knowing I should not eat late at night I make the decision not to eat after 6 pm only to give in to a craving at precisely 6:02pm! Because of my lack of control and discipline I live defeated in this area. In fact, control and discipline are a necessary skill for all areas of life. If I say I need to go to bed by 10 because I have to get up early than I should go to bed instead of browsing on Facebook till 11. Lysa said, "I'm on a journey with Jesus to learn the fine art of self-discipline for the purpose of holiness." I liked that, I am not alone in this journey, Jesus is with me every step of the way! Because He is with me I can be an overcomer!
4. Saying, "It's not fair" has caused many a girl to toss aside what she knows is right for the temporary thrill of whatever it is that does seem fair. This was another one I struggled with, rationalizing my indulgences. Because my friends and I are at a restaurant together and they decide to order a dessert means I should be able to too. After all, it is not fair that they can and I can't! But that is just the point, at this time I can't and I need to be willing to exercise control and disciple(there they are again) and simply say no. While it may be fun for me to eat a yummy dessert with them at that particular moment I will wake up the next day regretting my decision and struggle with guilt. Better to sacrifice the temporary thrill for a satisfying victory. The results are wonderful and encouraging.
5. Victory isn't a place we arrive at and then relax. Victory is when we pick something healthy over something not beneficial for us. And we maintain our victories with each next choice...We were made to walk on paths headed toward victory. I liked this and a great reminder. Victory is not a one time thing, it is a continuous battle. It requires us to make the right choices each day, while leaning on the power of God to help us overcome every temptation. God created us to be victorious. He has given us everything we need to defeat Satan and his lies. There is nothing we cannot overcome and nothing that can overcome us when we walk in the strength of our LORD.
6. Being ruled by something other than God diminishes our commitment and will make us feel increasingly distant from Him. I do not want my spiritual life to grow cold, I do not want the voice of God to be something that is faint, and I refuse to allow Satan to use something like food as a means to rule over me. When I allow food to dictate my life I have let Satan win. As I indulge my craving for something sweet, he whispers that I will never have the victory, I will always live defeated in this area so why bother and I proceed to pop another cookie or chocolate into my mouth. But God wants me to surrender my life to Him, to let Him have complete control over every area and promises me that if I do, it will be better than I ever could imagine. Better than anything the food industry could ever concoct!
I hope these truths have been a blessing and encouragement to you. It is my desire to lose weight for a couple of reasons. One, I want God to be my satisfaction over anything else this world has to offer. Two, I want to learn to exercise self-control or self-discipline, it is a fruit of the Spirit and one that should be applied to every area of life. I know this road will be hard, losing weight is never easy neither is learning to surrender. Yet I know that having that first taste of victory will make every struggle and obstacle worth the overcoming.
If anyone else would like to join me on this downward journey I would be delighted to have your company. We could connect and share encouraging emails and tips plus keep each other accountable. A journey like this is difficult but when you have the encouragement of others the road becomes a bit smoother. Feel free to comment below if you would like to join me, have an encouraging word to share or helpful tip!
I would also ask that you keep me in your prayers, this was not an easy post to write because the struggle is so deep. I would also love the opportunity to pray for you! Remember, we were made to crave God not food and as we draw closer to Him we will realize just how much He loves us!
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I am just an ordinary girl who is loved by an extraordinary God and I seek to love others the same way. I love to bake, read, do puzzles, watch Hallmark movies, and go shopping with my mom! This blog was created as a place where I could share some thoughts that the Lord has shown me and to be an encouragement to others who desire to know Him in a deeper way. My prayer is to learn to sit still and trust God with my future.