And you will know the truth, and the truth will make you free. John 8:32


Monday, April 27, 2009

Does It Ever Get Easy?

Do you ever wonder if you’ll struggle with food for the rest of your life? I know I used to feel like that. Eating seemed to be that one thing in life I would never be able to get a handle on. I didn’t control food—it controlled me.

I know many of you who read this blog feel the same way I used to feel. You wonder if you’ll ever get over it, and you’re tired of the battle. It’s hard to keep pressing on when you fail time after time after time.

Of course, Monday mornings are always hopeful. That’s the traditional day to start the new program, right? We eat all weekend with the idea that we’ll be good “starting Monday.”

But Monday never lasts. By Thursday or Friday (if we last that long), it’s back to the same old story—breaking our boundaries, feeling discouraged, and wanting to give up.

Here’s the interesting thing. Since we have a tendency to handle life’s problems with food, our natural inclination is to handle the problem of trying to stick to our eating boundaries the same way. When it’s hard, we eat! Of course, that breaks the boundaries and leads to the feeling that we’ll never get over the problem.

So what’s the answer? Are we stuck in an endless circle of failure and discouragement? No, a thousand times no! The answer is God. He can set us free from anything. He’s the Creator of the universe. He can move mountains. Of course, He can set us free from emotional eating.

What we need to do is study His Word to find out how He sets people free. What does God use to change behavior? Let’s look at Jesus’ prayer in the Garden of Gethsemane. When He prayed this prayer, He knew He wouldn’t be around much longer, and He was praying for the ones He was leaving behind.

In John 17:15 Jesus is telling the Father, “I do not ask You to take them out of the world, but to keep them from the evil one.” This could also be translated “keep them out of evil.”

He goes on to say how this is accomplished in verse 17, “Sanctify them in the truth; Your word is truth.” The Greek word for “in” that’s used here has an essence of “by means of.” We are sanctified and kept from evil by means of the truth.

In other words, we don’t change our behavior by getting up Monday morning and saying, “This week is going to be different! This week I’m going to stick with my plan!” No, we’re changed by the truth.

Remember, it’s not about the boundaries. It’s not about the plan. It’s about truth—and truth comes from God and His Word.

Food no longer controls me, but it’s not because of any brilliant displays of self-control and determination on my part. It was an incredibly difficult battle to change the way I responded to life. It often felt like I was limping along barely able to make progress.

When I felt that old urge to pull myself up by the bootstraps and “wait ‘til Monday,” I had to tell myself, “No, that’s not the way it works. It’s the truth that will set me free. I need to spend more time with God today. I need to cling to His word. I need to carry my thoughts captive to Him.” And that’s what set me free.

It’s also what keeps me free. When I feel tempted to go back to my old ways, I pull out my trusty lie-truth charts and start filling them out again. As I write the truth, I see my desires change before my eyes.

The Bible is a life-changing, joy-giving book. I’m amazed by its brilliance and transformed by it’s wisdom. This Monday morning, I encourage you to look for the solution to emotional eating in its pages—and not in another program!

8 comments:

Christina said...

Wow, Barb. This is just what I needed to read this Monday morning! Thank you thank you thank you!

Barb said...

You're welcome you're welcome you're welcome!

Kathy said...

Barb, it helps me to know you have been victorious in this area. It gives me hope that I also can overcome this if I keep at it.

Brenda said...

Barb, thanks for your encouragement . I found your blog when you posted on Bootcamp Buddies Christian board. I can't remember how many Monday mornings I have started over.

I know God is the answer.

Brenda

eliz said...

Hi! Barb, I thought I'd post here to share even though it's not exactly on topic for this post.

When I first saw your bible study titled "Freedom from emotional eating" ; I thought "yeah, right, I already know all about freedom" Since starting the study I now realize that I did not know the definition of -God's freedom!! Wow! What a difference!

Then I read about the lies of rewarding yourself with food. Goodness, every secular diet program out there rewards you for your will power, encouraging you to reward yourself for your willpower. It's all about buying yourself rewards so that you don't eat your rewards. But DUH!! Once again what is God's truth here? He never promised us that life would be easy.(quote from your FFEE study) What a no brainer! I knew that. Now I replace the lie with the truth!

But then I had been carrying lies with God's truth as you explained. And you can't believe them both. You can't carry them both. You replace the lies with God's truth. Now the lies are gone!! No more regressing back to old beliefs on a whim.(well with God's truth and practice) And yet I did question this on some level, was I really believing lies all these years? (I felt very close to God.) And it certainly couldn't be that many lies could it? LOL! This morning the lies came to mind full force, there were so many I had not realized and had subtly believed. I fought them one by one and replaced them rejoicing, quoting favorite scriptures to them, replacing them. I am becoming free!! This is freedom, God's freedom! Praise God! And even at 253 pounds I felt lighter losing the lies and half truths!! HA!! Take that satan!

Now I write these lies down so I can further find scripture to fight them until they are totally replaced in my mind. My daughter/accountability partener thinks "here we go again!" I've encouraged her too to start a notebook to record the lies.

Yes, I'm only on daty 3, but I am Not Defeated and daily I put on God's armour, pick up my sword and fight the good fight. Not man's boundaries, God's boundaries!! Wooo-Hoooo!
In Christian Love, Elizabeth/MN

Barb said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Barb said...

Elizabeth, I am excited for your victory - thank your for sharing it. That's how the battle is won - one little victory at a time until you have so many strung together that you're living in victory.

Anonymous said...

It is Monday morning and I am starting again! Just read the post and realized, once again, that there is no magic to a Monday! How many Monday mornings have I said, "this week will be different!" Thanks for the truth!