Wow! God is mighty. And yes, I am saying that because he blessed me to lose 35 lbs., but also because of what I have been gaining. It is hard to explain, but gaining this weight, losing the ability to fit into my old mold, and watching God form me into something else has been such a journey. I find myself seeing clearer as I continue to move deeper in experiencing freedom. I knew something had shifted when I hopped on the scale, noticed the weight loss, and did not feel my usual elation. I am seeing. I thought I would use to post to share what I have gained from the last few months.
- I am learning to WORSHIP
Yes, if I think about the most important lesson I have gained, I am learning to connect the choices I make about eating and exercise to being a visible demonstration to God of what I think about him. At this point in my life, I know what I need to eating, and how much exercise I should be receiving. Why am I not doing what I know to be best? I can’t control what the scale will do, but I can control what I offer in the form of my health behaviors to God.
- Scale is NOT the final measure
I have really struggled with the scale over these past few months. I found myself beginning these patterns of stepping on the scale, and then looking to the number as THE measure of if I am meeting my goals. If the scale provided a good read, then I believed I my behavior was acceptable. I found two things happening: 1) I had a false sense of pride over my progress and began to make poor eating choices; and 2) If the number was not what I wanted, felt overly discouraged about the hope of me ever losing the weight. Not good.
God convicted my heart, and I had to learn how to align my “success” with my worship to him in my health behaviors. If I focused on bringing my best sacrifice to God, then I have done my part. Even though I still weigh myself 1-2 days per week, I now understand the scale’s purpose. Accountability. Not approval. Not my God. Just a tool. The scale is not my final source of approval. That is hard, but I am grateful that God has been faithful.
- Hunger MATTERS
If I could point to one behavioral thing that I KNOW influenced my weight loss, I would have to say learning to eat ONLY when physically hungry (i.e., stomach growling) has made the most difference. I thought I was doing this, but without the stomach growl, I was often operating from a “hit or miss” position. I found waiting for the growl a very clear indicator of when to eat. It made the whole weight loss process simpler, and I have been working with my body instead of “jumping ahead of it” or “ignoring the signals.”
- Becoming WHOLE
I have been concerned about fitting in my old jeans, gaining approval, and receiving affirmation from others. I know there is more to life, but still, I have been concerned with the former. But God. He has a way of taking my limited desires, and making them into something beautiful. I had no idea how much I NEEDED to be freed from the desire to please people and fit into a mold that was socially acceptable (e.g., not being overweight). Actually, becoming overweight was necessary to show me that I did not need to achieve IT to be whole. I have learned to focus and worship God with my behaviors and am sitting in my worth just because He said that I have it. Not all the way there, but still moving in the right direction.
- Keep the FIRST thing, the FIRST and ONLY thing
At first, I didn’t see it, but slowly my devotion to God was being rivaled by my desire to see the scale move. It seemed to be the most important thing to me; I would weigh myself daily, and found my mood becoming heavily influenced by the number on the scale. Doing this blinded my heart and mind to experiencing true freedom; I became so focused on losing weight and found myself making decisions JUST because I wanted to the scale to be happy with me the next day. I have since changed that and am working on offering my health behaviors to God as my act of worship. This has made a significant difference in my spiritual health, and my ability to truly live transformed.
I am going to celebrate this accomplishment. Almost 40lbs! Wow. So grateful to God. Will look forward to enjoying the rest of this journey. Prayers for you, friends.