As the sun begins to set on 2013, I have a few confessions to make. While the beginning of 2013 started out well, during the last few months I've found myself in a pit of sorts. I began soaring atop a beautiful mountain focused on God. In August, I faced challenges I was not prepared to deal with. I thought I could stay the course and continue to persevere. Instead, I fell and I fell hard. My addiction is food. When stress comes my way, I eat and I eat constantly. It does not have to taste good, nor do I need to be hungry.
I knew it was happening and it was as if I could not stop myself. I was fully aware of my actions and what I needed to do differently, but I could NOT gather the strength to get up and move forward. The greatest problem with my pattern are all the "I's." You see, I will NEVER be able to do this on my own. Somewhere along the way I began feeding my pain with food and not God and His word.
Over the last few weeks, my health has declined all due to weight gain and chemicals from processed and unhealthy foods. Christmas day I found myself flat of my back in pain. I was forced to stay home while Doug enjoyed visiting both grand-babies for several hours each. While he played with their new toys and loved on each of them, I lay in the bed with two fur babies praying.
As I prayed I was reminded of several important facts:
~God loves me just as much when I am in the pit as He does when I am faithfully running the race of life accomplishing what He sets before me.
~I absolutely can NOT do this alone! No Way! No How!
~I must trust God when things are going well, but most importantly I must trust Him when things fall apart.
Okay, so what now?
~I've began again! I began by repenting!
~I've committed to trust God for each moment of each day!
First BIG test:
Last night I was feeling pretty good about making it through two days successfully. I made wise choices while clinging to my Lord for TWO DAYS. TWO DAYS is a long time for someone who can barely make it from one moment to the next without going back to old habits. I am one breath away from a relapse and I realize it.
While sitting in bed with both dogs, Sitka and Trouble reading my Bible, and writing in my journal I faced fear of relapse. My handsome husband brought a big bag of Cheetos and sat beside me. He opened the bag and begins eating.
There were so many things going through my mind:
~For real, Cheetos???
~What are you thinking?
~Are you trying to sabotage me?
~Doug doesn't bring food to bed, why? especially now? why?
Then I realized, I had asked God to forgive me and begged Him to help me. I acknowledged I could not do this alone and HE was my only hope to succeed. I proclaimed to my Lord that I was all in, fully committed. I admit it was pretty easy to confess and proclaim my trust until temptation came in the form of a bag of Cheetos to my bed of all places and escorted by a handsome old man. Temptations come when we are least expecting them. Many times they are carried by an unknowing messenger who has no desire to test our faith or commitment. It's not about the person holding the temptation. It's about me and my relationship with God.
Back to the NOW WHAT:
Just when I was ready to reach for the Cheetos, I began to think about my commitment to trust God when things were going well and when things were not going so well. Instead of going for the Cheetos, I grabbed my pen and began writing a prayer in my journal. I poured out my heart to God. I begged Him to help me. The more I unloaded my feelings the more I realized I did NOT want those nasty Cheetos. I want more of GOD. I want to be a usable vessel. I want to be healthy in every way, but most especially spiritually and I promised to allow Him to use my weakness to help others.
Recognizing my spiritual health is vital to my physical and emotional health is a huge step. So, here I am sharing an article full of run on sentences and jumbled thoughts, praying my journey will help someone else who is struggling.
Verse of HOPE:
"I can do all this through him who gives me strength."
Philippians 4:13 NIV
By His mercy and in the grip of His grace,
Andrea Bowling Perdue