Jan 26 2011

Made to Crave - Day 18

Day 18: I’m Not Defined by the Numbers

Based on Chapter 7 of Made to Crave

Thought for the Day: “We demolish arguments and every pretension that sets itself up against the knowledge of God, and we take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ.” (2 Corinthians 10:5)

I was in an exercise class one day when the gal next to me leaned over and shared concerns about her sister’s increasing weight. I was half listening and half straining to lift my aching legs when she quipped, “I mean, my sister now weighs like 150 pounds!” I didn’t know whether to laugh out loud or keep silent, because the number that horrified her was the exact number I saw that very morning on my scale!

However, I found great joy when I realized that my workout buddy’s statement didn’t rattle me.

It would have just a few years ago. It would have sent me on a tailspin full of crash diets and unrealistic expectations. However, there I was, at peace, in the midst of her harsh statement. I wasn’t at my goal weight yet. But I was in the process of investing wisely in my health and spiritual growth. I had been diligently filling my mind with God’s truths. These principles now protected me from thoughts of condemnation, jealousy, and defeat. This is what the apostle Paul meant when he said in 2 Corinthians 10:5:

We demolish arguments and every pretension that sets itself up against the knowledge of God, and we take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ.

When we’re familiar with God’s truth, we can literally challenge any comment with the questions, “Is it true? Is it beneficial? Is it necessary?” If the answer is no, then we don’t open the door of our hearts. We make the choice to walk away from the comment and all the negative thoughts it could harvest if we listened to it.

My classmate’s shock at her sister’s weight wasn’t beneficial to me. Therefore, I didn’t have to internalize her comment. I could leave it on the gym floor and walk away. That statement didn’t belong to me. I had a choice to make. I could feed that comment and let it crush my identity. Or, I could see it as a careless remark and move on with my day.

Standing in the gym, I desperately wanted to yell out three glorious words, “I am free!” In that moment, I had a small moment of victory over an identity disorder that I’d battled for a long time. I was no longer defined by a number on the scale, because my weight loss goal was peace. As we move through our healthy eating journey, remember that the goal shouldn’t just be a smaller measurement, but a larger measure of peace.

For more information about Lysa TerKeurst and her book Made to Crave, please visit: www.MadetoCrave.org

Jan 25 2011

Francesca Batistelli on K-LOVE yesterday

See all the pics here.

Free music from Fran here!

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Jan 25 2011

Made to Crave - Day 17

 

Day 17: Don’t Fence Me In!

Based on Chapter 15 of Made to Crave by Lysa TerKeurst

 

Thought for the Day: Boundaries are not restrictive fences meant to keep you from enjoying life, but gifts from a God who cares about your well-being.

 

Sometimes, the words “no,” “boundaries,” and “limitations” stir up feelings of deprivation and resistance in my strong-willed self. But I’ve learned that I must embrace the boundaries of the healthy eating plan that I chose. I must see these limits as parameters that define my freedom.

 

I learned this principle through my sweet, little dog, Chelsea, who isn’t the brightest canine around cars. She’s obsessed with trying to attack the tires crunching against our gravel driveway inside our fenced-in yard. As a result, she had an unfortunate encounter with a moving vehicle about the same time I started my healthy eating plan.

 

After Chelsea’s injury, the vet informed us that helping her heal meant we’d have to keep her calm for three weeks. This recommendation sounded crazy considering it’s hard to keep Chelsea still for three minutes! Worse, she was forbidden to bite or pull at her bandages and stitches. So, the dreaded cone was placed around her neck to keep her injuries out of reach.

 

As Chelsea healed, I was the master of her new limitations. She punished me with hours of whining and crying. She constantly tried to escape through our fence and kept snapping at her bandages. However, my love for this dog wouldn’t permit me to let her to harm herself. Her brokenness couldn’t handle that kind of freedom. Not yet.

 

As I watched Chelsea struggle, I was struck by the way her situation applied to my issues with eating healthy. My brokenness couldn’t handle freedom with food outside the boundaries of my plan. Not yet. Eventually I would be able to add some things back into my diet in small quantities. But not yet.

 

Since my brokenness with food runs deep, my new healthy habits need time to run even deeper. Here are a few of the boundaries I’ve created to ensure success on my healthy eating adventure:

 

I am not made to be a victim of my poor choices. I was made to be a victorious child of God.

I can find ways to celebrate that don’t involve blowing my healthy eating plan.

If I am in a situation where the temptation is overwhelming, I will have to choose either to remove the temptation or remove myself from the situation.

Struggling with my weight isn’t a curse from God. Being overweight is an outside indication that internal changes are needed for my body to function properly and for me to feel well.

 

 

I’ve learned that boundaries aren’t restrictive fences meant to keep us from enjoying life, but gifts from a God who cares about our well-being. Whether you are staring at a party hors d’oeuvre table of all things cheesy, or ready to bite your friend’s head off as she reminds you of the healthy eating plan you chose, I pray these boundaries help you like they’ve helped me.

 

 

For more information about Lysa TerKeurst and her book Made to Crave, please visit: www.MadetoCrave.org

Jan 24 2011

Made to Crave - Day 16

Day 16: The “G” word

Based on Chapter 13 of Made to Crave by Lysa TerKeurst

  

Thought for the Day: “As the deer pants for steams of water, so my soul thirsts for you, O God. My soul thirsts for God, for the living God. When can I go and meet with God?” (Psalm 42:1–2)

  

Have you ever heard a sermon about your eating habits? I doubt it. Excessive drinking, yes. Excessive eating, never. At least I hadn’t until a historic church-going day when the preacher man pulled out the big “G” word: gluttony.

 

I rolled my eyes, as you have just done, and thought, “How dare you say to me that eating is a sinful desire?” But his point was brilliant and I took it to heart. How can we stand and wag our fingers in the direction of alcohol only to walk into the church-wide, covered-dish buffet and stuff ourselves sick with fried, covered-and-smothered, grossly caloric delights that buckle our paper plates and cause our stomachs to cry for antacids?

 

I want you to hear me. I’m not saying that eating is a sinful desire. What I am saying is, if you have a script like this (“I’m fat, I’m ugly, and I’m not capable of getting it together”) playing in your mind, then something is waging war against your soul.

First Peter 2:11 reminds us, “Dear friends, I urge you as aliens and strangers in the world to abstain from sinful desires which wage war against your soul.”

 

In other words, if something is waging war against your soul, it is a sinful desire. Now please hear me again. Eating in and of itself is not a sinful desire. God made us to consume food, but food was never supposed to consume us. And if food starts consuming us to the point where we cannot feel empowered, then that is a problem.

 

I imagine at this point you are wondering if we really need to go there with this gluttony thing. It’s not exactly the most girlfriend-friendly topic that makes you want to say, “Preach on, sister. I’m loving this encouragement!”

 

When we rely on overstuffing ourselves with food, drinking until we get drunk, or conducting an adulterous relationship, we are revealing a desperate attempt to silence the cries of a hungry soul.

 

Our souls have the same ravenous intensity as a vacuum cleaner; that’s how God created us—with a longing to be filled. It is a longing God instilled to draw us into deep intimacy with Him. The psalmist expresses this longing as an intense thirst:

 

As the deer pants for steams of water, so my soul thirsts for you, O God. My soul thirsts for God, for the living God. When can I go and meet with God?

 

 

Indeed, our souls are thirsty and ravenous vacuums. If we fail to fill our souls with spiritual nourishment, we will forever be triggered to numb our longings with other temporary physical pleasures that will never satisfy.

 

 

For more information about Lysa TerKeurst and her book Made to Crave, please visit: www.MadetoCrave.org