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

Monday, January 4, 2010

Renewing of the Mind Challenge

I’m sitting here by the fire this morning wondering how everyone is doing today. The holiday season is officially over now and the kids are back in school. Many of you are probably thinking, “Good—life will get back to normal today.”

I still have my Christmas tree up—in fact I’m looking at it right now all lit up—and my older boys are still home for Christmas vacation, so life isn’t back to normal yet here, but I like it this way. I love having all the kids home.

Still, it’s time to get back to work today. I’ll be working again on my new Bible study and forcing myself to go back to my writing schedule.

The first Monday of the new year is a good time for beginnings, and today I’d like to present you with a renewing of the mind challenge. What I’d like you to try is five days of truth journaling, Scripture prayers, or one of the other mind renewing practices in Freedom from Emotional Eating.

If you’re having problems sticking to your eating boundaries, you may want to place your efforts toward trying to stick to your boundaries. If you’re already doing that, I would try working on one of your negative emotions.

Here are some pointers for you if you’re going to work on sticking to your boundaries:

1. Print out some lie/truth charts right away or get a notebook handy. Find a pen and put everything in a place where it’s easy to get to when you need to journal. You can find a larger version of the lie/truth chart that’s in the book at in the sample content area.

2. Make a commitment to journal every time you eat something out of your boundaries, and I mean every time—even if it’s just one lick of the spoon.

3. Make a rule that you have to truth journal before you can eat anything else.

4. Truth journal even if you’re already planning to break your boundaries again the minute you’re done truth journaling.

5. Don’t beat yourself up even if you break your boundaries ten times during the day—but you should have ten truth journal entries to show for your ten boundary breaks. I would also intersperse those truth journal entries with Scripture prayers which you could even write out.

6. Do this for five solid days even if it doesn’t seem to be making a difference.

Here are some pointers for you if you had been sticking to your boundaries faithfully before Christmas but you’ve been doing terrible since:

1. Do all the things I just mentioned in the previous section.

2. In addition, you’ll need to truth journal your feelings of failure and your fear of continuing to fail.

3. Every time you feel like you will never get over this problem, journal those thoughts. This is a necessary part of the process. I don’t think you can break free from emotional eating without going through the fear of failure stage. It usually hits more than once and it’s often accompanied by failure. You’ll need to use the truth to combat all those lies that tell you you’ll never get over this problem!

4. Be willing to accept that your failure has made you gain some of your weight back if that’s what has happened. Weight isn’t everything, but following God is. Ask yourself, how does God see this situation you’re in? How are you seeing the situation? Adjust your thinking so it matches His.

5. Recognize that this is a trial and know that God can use this trial to bring you closer to Him and make you more like Him if you go to Him for help. If you have Freedom from Emotional Eating, go back to the chapter on trials and rework it with your present trial of eating failure in mind. Make a list of all the things God could do in your life if you were to keep going to Him for help with this trial.

6. Steep yourself in the Word. Spend as much time with God as possible. Remember that life is about loving God and loving others. Answer this question in your journal: How can I love God best in this situation of struggling with food? How can I love my neighbors best in this situation? In the overall scheme of life does a five or ten pound Christmas weight gain make that much difference? How would God want me to move on from here?

I’m going to have to give the pointers for working on the emotions in my next post because I need to get to work on writing before I lose my momentum. I’ll be praying for all of you this week.


Unknown said...

I am afraid to admit this but I believe I have left God out of my life lately! I havent tried to study the bible or get to know God in a while now. No wonder I have been struggling with my emotional eating. Thanks for this post. I needed it. And the email you sent me today. Kathy

Unknown said...

Hi Kathy,
It's well worth a little bout of emotional eating to realize what you've really been missing. I'll be praying for you. Barb

Unknown said...

Wow I wish I had read this a few days ago, I am up for this challenge as I have not been doing good at sticking to my boundaries. I have my new journal with the pen in the spiral part of it, fits perfectly. I will try this, 5 days of doing this every time I break the boundaries and see what happens! I am excited to see what I will learn.

Unknown said...

I'm excited too - let me know how it goes! Barb

Unknown said...

Today is day 1 for me. I will do it through Sunday. This is really helping me already. I am seeing how there is a huge dependence on God and not myself. wow! How I am seeing that I had been relying so much on my own self efforts...look forward to seeing how day 2 goes, as it won't be easy or comfortable but I know the Lord will multiply my efforts as I do this.

Unknown said...

I know He will too. What I've found is that if it's something I'm naturally really bad at, my own self-efforts don't usually work anyway - at least not long term. Remember when Jesus was praying for his disciples, and He said, "Sanctify them by thy truth"? He really does use the truth to sanctify us - it works!