I understand how she feels. When you’ve circled this issue as many times as I have, you start to feel gun shy about trying again. I’d loose the weight, feel great for a couple of months, deceive myself into thinking I could return to old habits, and all the weight would creep back on. I’d failed at finding lasting victory with every other attempt. Even with programs I thought were the sure thing. So, why would this one be any different?
And why in heavens would I want to add spiritual guilt on top of my physical guilt? And, why would I risk the shame of making God look bad, too?
Guilt wrapped in shame is a terrible burden to carry. Guilt always came when internally I knew I was making poor choices and could see the scale numbers climbing. Shame came when externally it became apparent to everyone else in the world.
It’s awful to battle something so raw, so deeply personal, with outside indications apparent to everyone else. Yes, the physical struggle was hard enough. I certainly didn’t want to drag down my spiritual life with this struggle as well.
But, here’s the problem: my weight issues were dragging me down physically and spiritually, whether I admitted it or not. When I don’t have peace physically, I don’t have peace spiritually. I can’t separate the two. Nor should I. I need spiritual motivation to step in where my physical determination falls short.
So, I started reading the Bible from the perspective of someone struggling with food issues. Though I had read the Bible many times and have even taught Bible studies for years, I’d missed how much God cares about and talks about this issue. Tucked within this Book written thousands of years ago, were some of the most astounding, life-changing, and applicable truths to this modern day epidemic with women.
I wept with joy. I wept with relief. I wept as I realized this would be one of the most significant spiritual journeys of my life. A spiritual journey that would yeild great physical benefits. And what about my concerns with letting God down?
My pastor, Stephen Furtick, put that rest one day with a simple but very profound truth, “How can you let God down when you weren’t ever holding Him up?”
I had to choose to operate in the reassurance of God’s love, the remembrance of God’s grace, and the reality of God’s power. And according to Isaiah 41:10, God’s the one holding me up, not the other way around. Amen.
Do not fear, for I am with you; do not anxiously look about you, for I am your God. I will strengthen you, surely I will help you, surely I will uphold you with My righteous right hand.’ Isaiah 41:10
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