Tuesday, November 7, 2017

The Struggle is Real

(Picture from livestrong.com)
What an honor to be asked to share a guest blog for Positively Debbie! She never ceases to amaze me with her courage, tenacity and determination. She continues to inspire me and encourage me in my fitness journey as I watch her push forward with hers.

It’s not just about weight loss, but that seems to be where we measure it the most. For me, it’s clearly about what I do and don’t put into my mouth; that’s where my weakness seems to triumph over me, daily.

I tend to look at things through the mirror of parallels – what’s going on around me spiritually while I take part in what’s going on around me physically?

My weight loss pendulum swings far to the heavy side, at the moment. As I age, it’s quite tempting to blame the advancing years for the slowing down of my body. It’s also easy to blame my emotions for the Doritos and pizza my mouth craves.

I’ve read some terrific books over the years (here’s a great one: - Made to Crave, by Lysa Terkeurst).

And, I’ve met some fabulous encouragers, those who’ve gone before me in this fitness journey, and met it with success. Debbie is one of those who’ve faced the battles, though different in appearance from my own, the roots are the same.

Among so many things, we face loneliness (empty nest syndrome), sadness (the absence of loved ones), hormonal fluctuations, boredom, and an overall emptiness that longs to be filled.

The way I see it, the deciding factor for reaching our fitness goals is simply: with what do I fill my gaping voids?

Another great book? I AM, by Michele Chusatt

Sometimes, I’m embarrassed to admit that I’m a Christian, because too often, there’s a lack of evidence with which I could be convicted as such. I feel like many could judge me and say, “If this God of yours truly loves you, why doesn’t He help you with these important areas of life struggles?”

And that’s just the kind of thing the enemy tries to silence me with, not being a good example before my fellow strugglers.

But, the blame lies with me. Enough of this banter that says, “…it’s not your fault…” Indeed, most of the time, it IS my fault. I get to choose whether I listen to the voice of logic and reason that tells me the bag of Doritos I’ve hidden for myself is the wrong place to go for validation and acceptance. I know in my heart, that God has already validated my heart, and has unconditionally accepted me, blemishes and all. He waits eagerly to meet my every need. He longs to be my source, for everything. Better yet, He loves me – always has, always will.

Yet… I too often seek refuge in a salty snack. Why? I suppose if I had all the answers, my book would be the next best seller and I wouldn’t have a weight loss care in the world.

The answers that I know will truly work, are those answers that have worked for me in the past:

*Get my eyes on Jesus, not on the weight scale. What we look at determines what fills our minds. Is my mind on God? Or on that little digital number that can ruin my day?

*Turn to the Bible before I lunge for the snacks. Most often, the desire for the snack disappears. My focus determines my actions.

*Get my praise on! Don’t listen to sad, sappy love songs where the songwriter ended up on the losing end of things!

*Listen to what God says about me, not what the world tries to force down my throat. I AM worthy of love, I AM accepted and justified, through Jesus Christ! Gone are the days of shame, Jesus has washed me clean of all that. The enemy of my soul loves to drag me down with his lies and a big bag of chips.

*Recognize: I GET TO CHOOSE. With every single choice presented to me throughout my day, I get to choose my response.

*My go-to passage in the Bible: Philippians 4:4-8 – Think on the good things!

Of course, eating clean and moving more are pivotal, but, we have to get to a place where we recognize that we deserve to eat clean and move our bodies. The lie that it’s just not worth it, we’re just not worth it – is the chain that binds us to unhealthy habits (whether it’s overeating, or overconsumption of alcohol or any other addiction that tempts us).

(Picture from Pinterest.com)

 Thank you for hearing my “points to ponder”.

Here’s a poem I wrote a few years back while seeing the weight scale greet me with pleasantries each morning. But, it’s true, even when the scale is mean to me.

Perhaps you didn’t hear me when I said I’d lose this weight

I meant it when I said it and you cannot change my fate

In Jesus’ Name I cast down any morbid enemy

that would try to take my freedom

and my grace away from me

I rebuke you, I resist you and you cannot steal my day

I choose this day Whom I shall serve,

and I shall serve His Way

I choose to live and not to die, I’ll walk a life of faith

I choose to lose the extra weight I’ve carried and I hate

In Jesus’ Name I’ll not give in to worldly ways and whine

I’ll not go running back to food for comfort for my mind

The God that made the universe and holds it in His Hands

Can surely take me through this trial into the promised lands

My mind’s made up, I’ve turned my face

away from earth’s rewards

I’ll draw upon my GOD as I take up His trusty Sword

I’ll fight the battle to be fought and know that I will win

His Sword is filled with Living Words

that keep my soul from sin

His Word will build me up

and keep me from the snares of man

He’ll fill me up with all I need -as only Jesus can

He Himself said meat is just to do His Father’s Will

He is the Bread of Life and will sustain me ever still

I’m living proof that Jesus truly saves, forgives and keeps

He’ll sanctify me daily as I yield my heart so deep

The wounds that I have carried for so many haunting years

Are healed in Jesus’ Precious Name, erased with all my fears.

~Helen Williams! c  2002

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