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

Monday, September 28, 2009

Yahoo Group

Hi Everyone,

A month or two ago I got an e-mail from Elizabeth saying she would like to start a Yahoo group where women who were going through Freedom from Emotional Eating could get together and share their journeys. I thought it was a great idea.

She has it up and running now and the link is Just cut and paste that into your browser and it should direct you to the site. The name of the group is FFEE, so if the link doesn't work just do a search for FFEE at Elizabeth is the moderator, so she can answer any questions you have when you join the group.

I'm really happy she had this idea and was willing to set it up as I am a hopeless non-techie! This should be a great place to get encouragement and help as you go through the Bible study. I'll be checking in from time to time as well, so if you have questions, go ahead and ask them in the forum - we can all help each other.

Hope to see you there!


Wednesday, September 23, 2009

I'll just break my boundaries, and then journal about it afterwards.

It’s been a busy week of canning and writing and school, but I thought I’d take a quick break to write a blog post. I hope you’ve all been doing well at sticking to your boundaries—I’ve actually been doing pretty well myself, so I pulled this one up from my (huge) file of past lie-truth charts.

Beliefs: 1. It would be so relaxing to have a lemon bar and listen to this beautiful music. 2. I was going to have one later, anyway (so it’s okay to have it now instead). 3. I’ll have one now and just journal about it after I eat it.

Truths: 1. True – although breaking my boundaries on a regular basis does not lead to a relaxing lifestyle. Having an eating obsession is stressful! 2. That’s like saying, “I’m going to get married later anyway, so I’ll just have sex now.” (Well, not quite, but I guess I was in a drastic mood the day I wrote this!) The truth is that breaking the boundaries once leads to a lifestyle of breaking the boundaries. My life is much better when I stick to them. 3. True (that’s what I did). Although, it would be much better to stick to the boundaries, it’s far better to plan to break them and journal about it, than to plan to break them and not journal about it.

The surprising truth is that even if you willfully break your boundaries, planning all the while to truth journal about it—and then actually follow through with it and truth journal—it will still be a good experience of replacing the lies you believe with truth. If your focus is on changing the way you think about food, the only real failure is when you break your boundaries and don’t renew your mind afterward.

But of course, it’s even better not to break your boundaries to begin with. (Not to mention the fact that if you did this on a regular basis, you might gain fifty pounds by the time the truth finally kicks in!)

Monday, September 14, 2009

When It Seems Like God is Asking Too Much

I’d like to tell you about a friend I met over the internet. I’ll call her Amanda. Amanda ordered my Bible study and wrote me after the first chapter, telling me how much she liked it. She felt sure God would use it in her life.

Then she got to the second chapter—the one on trials. Amanda is very familiar with trials. She has some serious health issues and a husband who is not only emotionally distant, but has also chosen not to work for much of their married life. You can imagine how that would make you feel toward your husband, and it was no different for Amanda. She’d been angry with him for more than thirty years.

It was the third lesson of the second chapter that really stumped Amanda—the one where Bill is being a deadbeat and Mary has to choose whether or not she’s going to forgive him. Amanda e-mailed me and told me she was having a difficult time getting past that lesson. I encouraged her to move on—that the fourth lesson in the chapter might help.

Well, Amanda did move on, and God began to do a great work in her heart. Let me let Amanda tell you:

My truth journaling started out angry and defensive, I was trying to justify to God why I should be allowed to hold this grudge and anger. And then I was angry that your Bible study should even suggest that I deal with this!! I cried hot angry tears. I thought there was no way you could understand just how hard my marriage was. After all I was trying to stop emotional eating, what did my emotions have to do with my husband!!

Boy did I find out!! Yes, then the lies started to pour out. And I realized I was not wanting to forgive myself for marrying my husband. You know like - how could I have been so stupid. So I truth journal ALL of those emotions and am starting to see the lies that I had no idea were there!! Then I started feeling lighter, freer. But if I stop truth journaling about this when I think I'm too busy I can feel the heaviness returning. I'm looking so forward to God helping me resolve this. I now believe He will, no matter how my husband treats me, I can cling to Him!

This was only the beginning. God has continued to work in Amanda’s life. She realized she needed to work on the anger before she could really break free from the emotional eating, and so that’s where she focused her efforts. God blessed her work. This is what she wrote to me later:

I realize now that as God allows my husband to follow his own will, God is telling me to come even closer to Him. Maybe it sounds silly, but sometimes those angry lies become security blankets! So letting go of them for me was frightening. The biggest lie I believed was that I deserved to be angry with my husband if he sinned. It is freeing to finally let go!

I can see now that my husband's behavior comes from the lies that he is caught up in. I can feel empathy and sadness for him, instead of anger. And I no longer expect God to fix him for me! :o)

Have you ever been in a situation like Amanda, where you feel like you have a right to hold on to your anger? I know I have, and I’m guessing most of us have. For me, anger was a stumbling block. It got in the way of my relationship with God. When I was finally willing to forgive, that’s when I really started growing close to Him.

It was the truth that made me willing to forgive. As I carried my thoughts captive to Jesus Christ through truth journaling and option charts, God gave me the strength to forgive and submit to Him. I found it to be an incredibly painful experience, but the joy that followed made it worth the pain.

Sometimes I wonder if anyone else is having a difficult time with the second chapter of Freedom from Emotional Eating. I realize the lesson in the third day of that chapter is a hard one—especially being raised in a culture that tells us we have a right to certain things. Let me encourage you today that God is always worth the sacrifices we make for Him.

Sometimes it helps to have someone to talk through your problems with. In another week or two I’ll be telling you about a yahoo group being formed where women who are doing Freedom from Emotional Eating can get together and discuss the things you’re working on. I hope it will be a blessing.

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

PMS and Emotional Eating

Have you ever wondered how much skinnier you'd be if you didn't have to have your period every month? There's always that little window of time right before you get your period when you're craving everything in sight. The question is, how do we deal with those times of the month without stuffing our faces?

The answer is simple. We deal with them just like we would the rest of the month - by renewing our minds. The only difference is that we have to renew our minds a lot more often when we have PMS.

Things bug us more, we're more sensitive, and of course there's an actual physical craving going on too. While we can't do much with the physical craving, we can deal with the emotions.

When someone hurts our feelings, rather than going to the refrigerator, we need to take the time to journal. When someone bugs us - same thing - journal rather than heading for the snack cupboard. If we take the time to journal the extra emotions we're experiencing, that will help with the cravings.

Since PMS is kind of a joke these day, it's easy to excuse our actions because of our hormones. We have to be careful not to get swept into that trap. If we're working on bringing the thoughts that cause our negative emotions captive to Christ, we'll have lots of opportunities to do that during that time of the month - not because people are nastier, but because we're more sensitive!

I can think of two lies related to PMS in particular that might cause us to do things we shouldn't do, including eat. Here they are with their accompanying truths:

1. I can't help myself (I have PMS).

Truth: I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me. I need to spend more time with Him and in His Word to get the strength I need to live the way He wants me to live.

2. It's okay for me to yell-eat-be annoyed-obsess-etc. (I have PMS).

Truth: Just because the world says something, doesn't mean it's true. God wants me to be loving, gentle, forgiving, self-controlled, and kind no matter what time of the month it is. I better spend some time renewing my mind, so that I feel these things on the inside - because whatever's on the inside of me is bound to come out, even more so than usual this time of the month.

Friday, September 4, 2009

I already blew it. I might as well eat.

I already blew it. I might as well eat.

How often have I said those words to myself? Maybe about a million times? When you think of it, though, it's a crazy thing to say. And a surprising thing to say, as well. After all, my mom taught me "two wrongs don't make a right." So why do I think eating is a good response to having already eaten too much?

To be honest, I'm not sure. Part of me wonders if it isn't the perfectionistic black and white side of me punishing the inept, can't-seem-to-get-it-all-together side of me.

At any rate, I'll try to journal it.

Belief: I already blew it.

Truth: At what point have I blown it - when I've eaten one bite outside of my boundaries, 20 bites outside my boundaries, or 100 bites outside my boundaries? Blowing it is a relative term. I can either look at what I've eaten and say, Well, at least I didn't eat more than this. It would be a victory to stop here. or I can look at what I've eaten and say, I can't believe I ate that much. What was I thinking? I'm such a loser! I'll never change. I think it would be far healthier and far more beneficial for me to look at it from the first standpoint.

So here's my truth: Thank God I didn't blow it as badly as I could have blown it. Stopping at this point and not going any further would be an incredible victory.

Belief: I might as well keep eating.

Truth: Since eating is a spiritual issue for me (because it used to be an idol in my life), this is a dangerous thing for me to say. It's like saying, Okay, I've already done what God doesn't want me to do, so I'm just going to plan a day of sin and enjoy it. I'll wait until tomorrow to live for God. When I look at it that way, I feel sick. No, I don't want to keep eating. I want to stop as soon as possible because I want to honor God in everything I do.

Here's my truth: The sooner I start living for God, the better.