Posts tagged ‘sin’

May 30, 2013

Day 506b: A Slave No More

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Ya know, yesterday on Day 505, I was supposed to write about the positivity of being free.

I tried a bunch of times to write on it, but I just wasn’t… feelin it. (And for good reason.) If you read the post I wrote just moments ago (Day 506a: Childish Conviction) then you’ll see why.

Sin. I wasn’t feeling free because I was still WILLINGLY going back to sin and asking to be its slave. But my little interaction today with my son was like someone spiritually grabbing me by the shoulders and shaking the snot out of me and saying WAKE UP!!!! YOU ARE A SLAVE BUT YOUR SHACKLES ARE OFF! WHY ARE YOU STILL WORKING FOR THIS MASTER? GO! GET OUT OF HERE! BE… FREE.

And I am.

I. am. free.

POSITIVITY: I am free.

Now, I am free from my slavery to sin, and I have become a slave to righteous living. Romans 6:18

I never understood before I started this covenant journey how restricting myself (a la “becoming a slave to righteous living”) would be FREEING? It just didn’t make sense. Until I actually went through that process and realized that last year I was so incredibly free from food once I restricted my foods with God as my help. Then… enter the turn of the year from 2012 to 2013 and my introducing chocolate back into my life.

Big mistake. Huge. HUGE.

However, I can thank God tonight that He has taken me down this road AGAIN to remind me AGAIN of this truth. Because since I ate that first bite of chocolate in January… I have been enslaved to it again. As I reached out that night to taste my first bite of sweetness, I shackled my tender, tender soul back to the vice that has held me captive for so long.

And now, I should probably expound on that to you guys, but I’d rather just talk to God about it in my prayer.

PRAYER:

Oh my God… how wonderful you have been to me today. How you have reached out yet AGAIN to redirect me. I can be nothing but thankful… no, wait, I can be more. I have hope and freedom once again God. Even as I walked into the house and was immediately assaulted with the all-too-familiar thought of “Hmmmm, what can I snack on?” I smiled God with such peace because I knew that I was free again.

And on that note… wow. Thank you for making confession and conviction SUCH an effective tool in redirecting me. Thank you for using my sweet little boy to speak a dagger of truth into my heart. Oh my Jesus, I needed Your Sword of Truth to cut me clean down the middle so that You could put me back together again. And Hallelujah you did it!

I just feel so full of hope and excitement as I look forward to more and more days and days of peace in my heart as you empower me with strength and the ability to resist these morsels of the former me. Lord Jesus, be close to me now. Stay sooooo close by my side… even now, I can sense that sneaky snaky devil searching in my armor for a weak link. Guard me God with your angels… protect me from evil even if just for a few days while I get my sea legs again. Allow me to be a glory and witness to you as I muddle through this covenant journey.

Oh just THANK YOU GOD… that is all I have tonight. Thanks. Thank you… thank you for this freedom. Thank you.

And a Hallelujah Amen!

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May 7, 2013

Day 483: Way, Way Out

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Looking back at my last post, Day 481: Black Sabbath, I realized that there were so. very. many. “outs” that God gave me to not have to take that downward plunge.

My husband saying “Get a pizza for you.”
Not previously having had any wine in the house.
The moment at the store where I thought “I could get something else entirely.”
When my husband hung out in the living room longer so I had to wait to sneak out the cookie dough.

God is faithful. He will not allow the temptation to be more than you can stand. When you are tempted, he will show you a way out so that you can endure. 1 Corinthians 10:13

He was all over it… on my behalf. And, honestly, I saw the signs then too. I knew that He was giving me a way out, but I was so determined to do wrong at that point that I just ignored all the lifelines He was throwing at me.

But Monday was another day entirely… a new day… with new mercies. And then this morning I was going back through my bookmarks and came across this one:

God is working in you, giving you the desire and the power to do what pleases Him. Philippians 2:13

It’s so cool when the Word of God expresses just what you need to know, just what you need to hear, just what I needed to be reminded of.

And ya know… this post is pretty short and sweet, but honestly, there isn’t a whole lot more to say about it! That last verse is what I’m gonna focus on today.

April 29, 2013

Day 475: Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day

Not sure why anyone would click on a post with a title like that! Ha! I don’t know if you can really tell from my posts, but usually I’m a pretty positive person. I like being happy. I like being supportive. I like being content.

But on Saturday… I was a WRECK.

And I mean… a WRECK. Like, to the point where I was looking up things on my phone like “How can you tell the difference between dissatisfaction and depression” kind of a wreck. I texted my friend Christie and told her, “I feel… buried… by my life.” I posted on my bible study for moms’ facebook page: “Some days… I miss myself.”

It was a bad, bad day.

Like, a terrible, horrible, no good, very bad day.

Hmmmmm, I bet that would make a great children’s book title.

Nah.

Anyway, I fought the sadness all morning. I looked at scriptures. I tried to be productive and “change” things (like doing the dishes and laundry and making my environment more peaceful). I took a shower. I tried spending a lot of time outside. I tried napping (yeah, the toddler twarted that plan about five minutes after I’d lain down).

I mean… nothing was making me feel better. And it was the third time this week that it happened, so I’ll admit that I was genuinely concerned for myself.

{It didn’t occur to me until this morning that it could be because I have had meat several times this week. I sorta wonder if that was jacking with my hormones because of all the… hormones they put in that stuff. But that is a post for another day.}

And eventually I just folded.

I hate ate some cookie dough. (And in case you were wondering, I accidentally wrote the word “hate” first! Freudian slip, I guess.)

And some mini m&ms.

I know that right now I’m supposed to tell you that it didn’t help. that I didn’t feel better. that I felt worse.

But, honestly, I did feel better. I’m not sure if it has any tie whatsoever to me eating chocolate… in fact, I doubt that it has any tie to that; however, I didn’t feel so despairing. I mean, I felt a little bad that I had gone against the covenant that I made with God, but I wasn’t heinously depressed. I got the boys to bed and crashed (well, until my toddler woke me up the next morning at 4:15am which led to me being awake enough to write Day 474: I’m On A Diet.)

And of course I woke up yesterday morning bright eyed and cheery! Made myself a smoothie. Made oatmeal for my boys. Played outside on the trampoline and with figurines all morning. It was great. Had soup for lunch. Some granola in the afternoon with my kids after we’d played outside again for quite a while on the trampoline and we made our own little waterpark with our fort slide and the little pool (here’s our youtube vid if you want to see it)! I made a vegan dinner and resisted putting feta all over it. We even picked up the house at the end of the day and my kitchen was all pretty and clean… clean enough for me to even post a pic of it on my instagram!

{My yummy smoothie… well, after my son ate half of it!}

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Now, I find myself needing to deal with the situation though.

But at the same time… I’m like, what? what “situation”? You sinned. You’ve admitted that you sinned. You’ve already fixed the problem and followed the covenant again today. You’ve asked for forgiveness.

Well, no. Not really. I haven’t.

And again let me say that the sin that I’m guilty of committing is not that of eating sugar (I don’t think that eating sugar is a sin, just for the record). My sin was my pride. my deliberately ignoring the will and call of God. making myself more important than Him. smarter than Him.

Yep. Now I’m feeling that conscience. that Holy Spirit working around in me.

Ya know, though, that’s okay. That’s what I’m supposed to feel. I’m supposed to “Let the Holy Spirit guide my life. Then I won’t do what the sinful nature craves.” (Galatians 5:16)

I’ll admit that there were multiple times yesterday where I prayed “Holy Spirit… guide me. Guide me right to a good decision!” And it worked! A friend of mine posted a note that she found that her mother had written on years ago (her mom has since gone on to Jesus’s land) and it said: “The Word is spirit and life.” and wow… just seeing that yesterday, well, it made me burst into tears… it was just the words I needed to hear. The Word is one way I get a chance to hear the heart of God. And throughout this past year and a half, that is what has reigned me in. revitalized me. guided me.

The Word.

Holy Spirit, God, Jesus… guide me back to the Word in my life. Make me crave the Word. Cause if I crave The Word then I won’t do what the sinful nature craves because I’ll be craving the things of God.

And those things are pretty dern spiritually yummy!

{My vegan dinner without feta… }

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April 28, 2013

Day 474: I Am On A Diet

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I’m gonna admit it.

I’m on a diet.

But I don’t want to be.

I want to be on a covenant.

Well, more accurately: I want to want to be on a covenant.

But I’m on a diet.

I decided to do a little Daniel Fast for a few weeks until my brother’s thirtieth birthday weekend. But really, I’m gonna be honest with ya. It was just cause I wanted to lose some more weight. It had nothing to do with God other than I picked a “diet” from the bible. I mean, don’t get me wrong, I still think he’s telling me to “go back to the beginning” like I mentioned on Day 464: Out Of Options and I still think that eating a Daniel Fast-type-diet is the way to go for me… it’s just that I’m having some difficulty standing by it cause it was more about ME and so not about HIM.

If it were about Him, I’d like to think that I’d been relentless about not eating meat, about not eating bread, about eating fruit and veggies, about going to the grocery store to get some real food supplies, about cooking Daniel Fast meals.

But relentless, I have not been.

{I blame that little yoda moment right there on the fact that I’m writing at 4:40am.}

And I’m not here to beat myself up. I’m here to lay it out there. Cause I’m on a journey. And a journey has a lot of deviations from the path. I’m still heading in the right direction, but sometimes I get diverted off the highway. or I think I’m too worn out and I need a pit stop. or I’m just too. dern. tired. to go any further. So, now I realize how much I need His Power. His Spirit. His Life.

Realizing that again, gets me back on that highway. It gets me focusing on The Thing that matters again.

God. The Word. The Holy Spirit. The Forgiveness of Jesus Christ. The Calling to be a Blessing to the World.

Let the Holy Spirit guide your lives. Then you won’t be doing what your sinful nature craves. Galatians 5:16

So, Holy Spirit… guide my life. I don’t want to do what my sinful nature craves. Guide my life. Guide me. Guide my mind. Guide my actions. Guide my thoughts, my hopes, my fears. Guide me to God.

April 21, 2013

Day 467: Good Gluttony

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Thrown into an empty well by his brothers to die.
Sold by the same brothers to slave traders.
Sold again as a servant in Egypt.
Blackmailed by his boss’s wife.
Ended up in prison.

Joseph.

I have become nigh-obsessed with the story of Joseph.

You can partially blame that on Beth Moore as well, too… just like Day 449: Blame It On Beth Moore. Cause I’ve just finished her study The Patriarchs on Wednesday nights at my church. And the other partially would be that I was assigned his story to master teach in our youth department on Sunday at church a while back (Day 349: Ohhhh, Hockey Puck).

And it’s just so interesting how the bible can come alive over and over again. I mean… it’s Joseph. You know, Joseph and his coat of many colors?!?! Any kid who went to church heard the story of Joseph. And it was a great story then too… but it’s just cool to me how as an adult, I get something entirely different out of the story. As a kid I remember thinking the moral was “Don’t be prideful or people will try to throw you in an empty well.” Cause then I just sorta checked out on the rest of the story where all the bad stuff happens to him.

And now I realized that the second half of his life IS the story.

Because after all of that horrible stuff happened to him, he was raised to the highest status in Egypt, he was able to set aside grain for the entire country that would then feed his family, and he was able to reconcile with his brothers. And it all boils down to what he says to his brothers after his father has died and they are afraid that he will get revenge on them since Jacob isn’t there anymore to see it. He tells them:

You intended to harm me, but God intended it all for good. He brought me to this position so I could save the lives of many people. Genesis 50:20

As I struggled a bit this week (what with the granola bars and all on Day 466: Hungry Hungry Hippie), I had to fight not getting down on myself for being imperfect. And then I remembered this story again… and thought, wow. Gluttony was trying to harm me, but God intended it all for good.

There is a lot of proof (my relationship with Him has never been closer and my faith has grown exponentially), but my favorite is this:

God has used my gluttony, my being in the pit, my selling of myself over to the sins of gluttony and food-lust, my burden of being overweight and trapped in the prison of sugar-addiction… He has used all of that for the good.

For you.

To save your life.

Because as I have traveled this path I have realized HOW. MANY. OF. US. THERE. ARE.

So many of us struggle with this. So many of us feel defeated. unhealable. trapped. lost. forgotten. resigned.

And it’s not just overweight women either.

Skinny girls. LOTS of skinny girls live on diets of chocolate. I know. I know because I’ve met them in coffee shops where they’ve bawled their eyes out. I’ve chatted with them while dropping off my son. I’ve read their emails to me where they confess their hoarding spots.

Manly men.
Average weight people.
Children.
Moms.

It’s… everywhere.

And I’ve seen and heard how God is using this journey of mine… from gluttonous to glorious… to help people begin their own journey of healing and renewal and freedom.

God is using my struggles with the sin of gluttony… for good.

And that… that is good.

April 13, 2013

Day 459: more. More! MORE!!!

I recently had a facebook message “conversation” with an old friend about my covenant. And well, there were just some parts of the message that I felt would be beneficial to share.

He is growing me so much through helping me overcome… such a journey. His message through me has so little to do with weight and food and so much more to do with me becoming less (in the spiritual) while He becomes more in my life.

It’s hard to understand often the horrible oppression I have felt from “just food” over the span of my life. A terrible, heavy burden… unconquerable. I have so often identified with the bleeding woman… nothing could release me from it save the touching of His garment, but up until the past year I had not the courage to reach out and touch.

But during the time I have been on my covenant journey with Him, I have found such a sweet freedom as I have never known in my life: freedom from that suffocating and all-encompassing burden. So, as simple as it might sound to just give up coffee or food, know that, for me, it is not just something neat, or fun, or even spiritually trendy… it is a battle. And for now, this is where I find myself on the journey.

Perhaps a lot of these words I’ve already said over the course of these 459 days, but I found it so… cathartic to say them yet again. To remind myself of the crushing feeling of despair. To remember the hopelessness each time I failed to be stronger than the pull of food. To refresh the pain of accepting that I was simply just “one of those people” that would struggle with food my whole life.

And cathartic to bring to light again the freedom that I have felt. the hopefulness. the salve over my aching and wounded heart. and the new identity that He has infused within me.

Because, here’s what’s cool… “we are more than conquerors through him who loved us” (Romans 8:37). And don’t just discount that phrase. For years, nay… for my. entire. life. I have read that word for word but my mind and heart have HEARD this:

“We are more than conquerors…”

Yeah. I just like knocked out two words of the verse mentally. “We are conquerors.” I mean… I was okay with that and all. Being a conqueror… that’d be, ya know, cool. I’d sorta picture myself on a mountain wearing Roman armor with a flag or something blowing the wind while I looked off at the horizon. Annnnnnd, that was about the end of that little (yes, weird) daydream. But look at it again the real way…

“We are more than conquerors…”

Think about that… more. we are MORE than just a conqueror! I mean, being a conqueror is pretty dang awesome, but yo… we are MORE. We don’t just win the battle… we go beyond that! I’m so encouraged by knowing that simple thing. Even if tomorrow He healed me permanently of this sin of gluttony… if tomorrow I was officially a conqueror over gluttony… that’s not the end-all be-all. I am MORE than just a conqueror!

I… I… I don’t even know what that would make me… I don’t even know what is “more than conqueror”, but hey… the thought of being simply a conqueror is so enticing, I can only imagine how amazing it will be to find out what the job is on the next rung of the old spiritual career ladder!

Which leads me to paste in the very end of my conversation with my friend:

I know, so much more keenly now, that God has called me to much more than just salvation… that was just a pinpoint in my life. Now I am to find my purpose in His Kingdom so that I might be a blessing to the world.

And THAT. that is what it means to be more. Because THAT is really and truly THE call of a follower of God. That through us, through the promise to Abraham, that through us all families on earth with be blessed (Genesis 12:3).

Ya know. That makes me want to be over and done with this gluttony stuff. It makes me ready to move on to being a conqueror. It makes me ready to be MORE.

{This was the closest thing that I could think of to a time in my life
where I felt like my dream of being a conqueror…
I had hiked (in flip flops, mind you)
through this dense rainforest in Costa Rica
when on my Spanish immersion summer,
and we ended up at this natural waterfall. It was… uh.maz.ing.}

Costa Rica Waterfall

April 3, 2013

Day 449: Blame It On Beth Moore

Beth Moore Patriarchs Best Verses Ever

No sugar for five years.

Really, January? Really???

Hey. That’s what God said… don’t look at ME.

One year is cute… five years is getting wayyyyyyy closer to real sacrifice.

What can I say? Blame it on Beth Moore.

She was the one who wrote The Patriarchs. She was the one that was open and honest on page 62. She was the one that put those three, little, almost insignificant verses in between those little, almost insignificant parenthesis.

You know. The kind of verses that you read at just the right time. when you are in just the right attitude. when you have just the right heart to receive them. The kind of verses that you have read a gazillion times before, but this time… this time you are seeking God so fervently. you want to meet with Him so much. you need a word from Him. a vision. a Hope. And then someone like Beth Moore goes and throws them all together…

I was done for.

Here are the three verse chunks… first I’ll put the plain on scripture and then I’m going to do some verse interrupting because I think it’s just as important to know what was simultaneously going through my mind as I read them.

Give your bodies to God because of all he has done for you. Let them be a living and holy sacrifice—the kind he will find acceptable. This is truly the way to worship him. Don’t copy the behavior and customs of this world, but let God transform you into a new person by changing the way you think. Then you will learn to know God’s will for you, which is good and pleasing and perfect. Romans 12:1-2

 Give your bodies to God {Let go of the need to control this experience with your body… give your body’s control over to Him} because of all he has done for you. Let them be a living and holy sacrifice {Hmmmmm, he’s repeating this whole “give up” mentality} —the kind he will find acceptable. This is truly the way to worship him. Don’t copy the behavior and customs of this world {Like diets, balance, gluttony, doing things my way}, but let God transform you into a new person by changing the way you think. Then {Give up and THEN He’ll show you the way to do it} you will learn to know God’s will for you, which is good and pleasing and perfect {That’s what I want… the PERFECT diet that’s not a diet!}. Romans 12:1-2

Honestly, after these verses, I was already feeling His pull. I knew that I had tried to do it “my way” with the slackened covenant, and I knew that it wasn’t going to work unless I did things His way… which might not look normal to the outside world. But after reading those, I was so terribly curious about the other two verses. I mean, could they say anything more???

We are human, but we don’t wage war as humans do. We use God’s mighty weapons, not worldly weapons, to knock down the strongholds of human reasoning and to destroy false arguments. We destroy every proud obstacle that keeps people from knowing God. We capture their rebellious thoughts and teach them to obey Christ. 2 Corinthians 10:3-5

We are human, but we don’t wage war as humans do. {Oh and this fight with food is a battle, a war!} We use God’s mighty weapons {the Word, faith, truth, His righteousness, prayer}, not worldly weapons {like typical diets}, to knock down the strongholds of human reasoning and to destroy false arguments {My OWN arguments}. We destroy every proud obstacle that keeps people from knowing God. {This obstacle of food drains so much of my thoughts and life that it does keep me from spending that time focused on God, so it must be destroyed! Mwah ha ha ha!} 2 Corinthians 10:3-5

And even though the next verses only called for verse 23, I was struck by a few more verses.

They (the Gentiles) live for lustful pleasure and eagerly practice every kind of impurity. But that isn’t what you learned about Christ. Since you have heard about Jesus and have learned the truth that comes from him, throw off your old sinful nature and your former way of life, which is corrupted by lust and deception. Instead, let the Spirit renew your thoughts and attitudes. Put on your new nature, created to be like God—truly righteous and holy. Ephesians 4:19-24

They (the Gentiles) live for lustful pleasure and eagerly practice every kind of impurity. {I hate to say it, as miserable as I was, I was EAGERLY eating that chocolate.} But that isn’t what you learned about Christ. Since you have heard about Jesus and have learned the truth that comes from him, throw off your old sinful nature and your former way of life, {that. right there. that did me in. throw off your former way of life. stop eating sugar.} which is corrupted by lust and deception. {Yep. Those would be the two words I’d use to describe me with sugar.} Instead, let the Spirit renew your thoughts and attitudes. Put on your new nature, created to be like God—truly righteous and holy. {Let GOD do this. Go back to the new you that God formed you into.} Ephesians 4:19-24

And well, yeah… I can’t really blame Beth Moore. God put those verses there. For me. For that moment. And, truth be told, I was really far behind in my study, but now I’m actually glad… I needed those verses at just that moment. He really does work all things together for the good of those who love Him and are called according to his purpose!!! (Romans 8:28)

So, there ya have it. That’s partially how I came to the conclusion to go back to a sugarless life that I referred to on Day 444.

Oh, and next time I’ll talk about how God told me to give up something else for those five years. It’s almost as shocking as me giving up chocolate!

March 31, 2013

Day 446: Easter… nbd.

Easter Basket 1

nbd

no big deal

{just in case you are like me and would have had to look that up}

I was seeing that on facebook a lot and had to look it up on google. And then I pretty much instantly fell in love with the term because it’s an ironic statement.

Just got married. nbd.
Just had my first born child. nbd.
Just met Nick Jonas. nbd. (You know who you are – haha)

And I’m a total sucker for a play on words. Maybe I should start a blog called “The Confessions of a Former English Teacher.”

No? You don’t think so? Yeah… me either!

Anyway, as Easter day as approached, I’ve been sorta “nbd” about it.

{gasps of shock heard round the world}

I know, right? Good Jesus-seeking Christian and, well aside from being excited about giving my kids their Easter baskets, I’m just not that… excited.

And it’s not because I’m into the commercial side of things so much that I’ve been blinded to the REAL meaning of Easter. I promise.

It’s because I celebrate Easter all. year. long.

Every few days is like Easter to me… when I am so keenly reminded of my sin and how He died for me and freed me from it. when I am brought face to face with power and strength given me by the Holy Spirit. when I experience joy and peace and comfort from His Spirit.

It’s… Easter.

So I guess it’s okay that I’m nbd about Easter today, cause honey… this girl rejoices in Her Savior’s Resurrection every day.

{And yes, I had to give y’all some Easter basket love here… these are my boys’ Easter baskets… such fun!}

Easter Basket 2

March 28, 2013

Day 443: The Post Where I Sorta Tell You What God Said

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Okay, I won’t wait too long to “reveal” the conclusion that God and I came to this past weekend since I wouldn’t tell you on Day 441. Ha!

It didn’t take much of God’s influence for me to know that my oh-so-brilliant plan of eating sugar on full moon days, national holidays, and at birthday parties was a total flop. And, I have to confess, that was allllll my idea in the first place. I never really asked God about what He thought I should do. Yeahhhh, sooooo… apparently that’s never a good idea. Ya know, to NOT ask God what He wants to do in your life.

Essentially, I realized that the more lenient I was with myself and in my covenant with God, then the more I struggled with sugar. It was totally opposite of what I thought would be the case! Nutritionists and counselors frequently give the advice: create balance in your life… you can’t be extreme. Which, on paper… totally. makes. sense. And honestly, I truly WISH that were the case for me. But, well, it’s not. Cause… whether or not my body is truly addicted to sugar, my MIND is. And when I started to really come to grips with that this weekend is when I knew that the on-again, off-again “covenant” I had made up was not going to work.

A girl at the retreat was talking about her husband after he sobered. He said that he had found booze all over the house… he’d even found some in the ATTIC that he’d hidden! And I laughed and giggled a bit at that, and then… I started to think of all the times that I’d hidden sugar. And especially since I switched over to the on-again, off-again covenant.

Extra candy from Christmas stocking stuffing that only I knew existed… tucked away in the craft box. The “good” candy from Halloween (Twix, Snickers, Milky Way, etc)… slid all the way back behind the extra olive oil in the pantry. My son’s leftover cupcake from his 5 1/2 birthday party at school… disguised as old leftovers in the very back of the top shelf of the fridge.

When I gave up “control” over my eating for those couple of weeks, I went and hit every. single. spot.

Again. I might not be physically addicted to the stuff… but, I was ACTING like an addict.

I talked about it with this girl later. She, too, had been an alcoholic and has been sober for quite a while now… her secret? She never touches the stuff. Ever. She won’t ever have another drink. She said “There is never a time where anything good comes from drinking alcohol.”

And she was right… and I knew that the same truth, really and truly, applied to sugar. Yes, there are good moments surrounding the eating of sugar (birthdays, Christmas, anniversaries, etc) but the actual eating of sugar… nope. nothing good actually comes out of it. (Now, mind you, when I say “sugar” I’m talking about the refined product that we use today… not at all about fruit-kind-of-sugar… that stuff is awesome!) And the last year has taught me that eating sugar during those special occasions isn’t necessary to have a good time at them. (Ha – doesn’t that sound like someone realizing that they can have a “good time” without alcohol?)

During that conversation, I mentioned that I was starting to feel pulled to giving up sugar… forever. And honestly, at that point I was totally on board with it. At first, she thought that idea was a little wack, but as I explained that it wasn’t that I just really, really wanted to give up sugar… it was that I felt I HAD to give up sugar. I was responding to the stuff like an alcoholic! I wanted to not have the stuff, but if I allowed myself one bite even… days after it would all fall apart and I’d be back at my old-binging self again!

It was like God had cured me of cancer or something the year before, and here I was saying, “No God, why don’t you go ahead and give it back to me?” CRAZY. But that’s what I was doing! I had been freeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee from sugar for a year. And it was amazing! One of the most amazing years of my life! And then I had said, “No, God, put me back in chains… I want to be a slave to the stuff again.”

Nutso.

So, I started to pray that God would show me… no sugar forever? no sugar for a year? What was His plan? Not my plan. Because I no longer wanted to be a slave to sin. to gluttony. to pain. to sugar. I wanted to be a slave to Him.

And these verses speak so well to all of this:

Don’t you realize that you become the slave of whatever you choose to obey? You can be a slave to sin, which leads to death, or you can choose to obey God, which leads to righteous living. Thank God! Once you were slaves of sin, but now you wholeheartedly obey this teaching we have given you. Now you are free from your slavery to sin, and you have become slaves to righteous living.

Because of the weakness of your human nature, I am using the illustration of slavery to help you understand all this. Previously, you let yourselves be slaves to impurity and lawlessness, which led ever deeper into sin. {Oh man, this guy just GETS IT!} Now you must give yourselves to be slaves to righteous living so that you will become holy.

When you were slaves to sin, you were free from the obligation to do right. And what was the result? You are now ashamed of the things you used to do, things that end in eternal doom. But now you are free from the power of sin and have become slaves of God. Now you do those things that lead to holiness and result in eternal life. For sin will pay you back with death, but the free gift of God is eternal life through Christ Jesus our Lord. Romans 6:15-23

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One thing I do want to mention – I don’t want anyone to think that I’m saying alcoholism and/or drug use and a sugar “addiction” are the exact same beast. I know that the struggles involved in alcoholism and drug use are of an entirely different nature. What I am saying is that I experience some of the same reactions to “fighting off” sugar that addicts experience. But please don’t think that I’m downplaying the extreme battle that an addict must fight.

March 26, 2013

Day 441: The Post Where I Don’t Tell You What God Said

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I’ve written about 47 beginnings to this post. (See? Up there? My journal… it’s like a gazillion starts and stops. And that is just ONE.PAGE. of it!)

Cause I wanted you to know… it’s not an ordinary post.

It’s not about being witty.
It’s not about a great recipe.
It’s not about anything average.

It’s about coming to grips with God.

It’s about letting Him come to grips with my food issues.

It’s about giving up sugar again. For a long, long time.

I went on a retreat for moms this past weekend, and whereas I have gone on this retreat twice before for the purpose of relaxing and getting away, this time I went because I needed to meet with Jesus. I needed God to show up and direct me. I needed Him.

So that’s what I prayed when I went out there… “God. Please. I have been waiting and waiting for You to show up in my life. I have been trying to wait patiently. Please, speak to me this weekend. Show up this weekend. In a burning bush. In fire from heaven. In a passing whisper. In a wind. In a cloud by night or fire by day. In the body of Your Son Jesus. Whatever the form, I’m ready to hear from You. Please speak to me.

And, He did.

But, not about what I wanted to talk about.

I wanted Him to speak to me and guide me about going back to work in the fall. I really felt completely pulled in two directions about it since we, like most families, could use the money and I’m a pretty dern good teacher and He might want to use me there, but at the same time, I really wanted to be a stay-at-home-mom and work on writing more. And I just wanted Him to show me which option HE wanted. I really, truly wanted to be wherever He would receive the most glory!

But He wanted to talk about sugar.

Ha! I know, that sounds funny. I wanted to talk His Glory and he wanted to talk about my sugar. Backwards isn’t it????

Nope. Not at all.

He wanted to talk about sugar because it was becoming a wedge between He and I again. And it wouldn’t matter if He led me towards working or writing, if there is a stronghold that strong in my life, I was gonna have a hard time allowing His Glory to shine through me. So, we talked about sugar.

And honestly, it’s gonna have to be a couple of posts to get out everything that He worked through on me. And I’m actually not even gonna tell you in this post what He said about sugar, because I want to remind you of something even more important.

He. will. answer.

If you wait. If you keep asking. If you keep your eyes focused on Him. If you ask for things that please Him.

He. will. answer.

We are confident that he hears us whenever we ask for anything that pleases him. And since we know he hears us when we make our requests, we also know that he will give us what we ask for. 1 John 5:14-15

It is impossible to please God without faith. Anyone who wants to come to him must believe that God exists and that he rewards those who sincerely seek him. Hebrews 11:6

And the verse I want you to really, really, reallllllly hear:

Wait for the Lord. Be strong and take heart and wait for the Lord. Psalm 27:14

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