“But when you are tempted He will also provide a way out so that you can stand up under it.”
1 Corinthians 10:13c
12 pounds in two weeks…I feel like an advertisement for a miracle weight loss solution. But it’s not an ad, though it is a bit of a miracle. I have lost 12 pounds in two weeks.
I have struggled with my weight, gaining and losing 50 pounds at a clip, since I was about 12 years old. When I saw a recent photo of me with my beautiful, young, healthy girls, I was aghast at the size of my belly, which looked like the centerpiece of the photo. (Posted, not by me, on Facebook, no less!) As we all know, this belly fat is a literal killer; an indicator of potential heart disease in my future. And it doesn’t look good either. This was the final straw…I knew I really needed to do something. The Good Book says our bodies are temples…I was in need of some renovation.
But where to begin? Like so many of us, I have tried many ways, many times to lose weight, and had temporary success.
“Insanity: doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results,” said Albert Einstein. And so I guess you could say I was acting insane. I kept showing up for a meeting, weighing in, leaving the meeting momentarily inspired, only to enjoy some Haagie Daagie after dinner that same night. I’ve done this countless times over the past couple of years. But that’s all I’ve done. I’ve just been so unmotivated, so lacking in self-discipline!
In the meantime, lots of people have shared their success with the low carb approach to eating. My sister lost 30 pounds last year, her husband lost more than that. My dear friend lent me her Sugar Busters book and told me that she really felt getting rid of sugar and white flour was the answer for me. And many friends who seem to have this weight-thing under control have explained that when they start to see weight adding up, they cut out sugar and carbs.
“Ohhh, I see,” I said with disappointment. Then turned to myself and fed myself a pack of lies in addition to a lot of carbs.
“Oh, good for her, I could never do that.”
“I love to eat!”
“No pasta, no bread, no dessert, NO BAGELS? No way…”
“The only way I can ever lose weight is to _____ (fill in the blank, “go on such and such a diet,” “eat the same things, but less of them,” “go to a weekly meeting where I weigh in.”
Here’s a big fat lie…”Maybe this is the way I’m supposed to be. Genetics and all that. I’d probably have to be sick to really lose weight.”
The lies I’ve told myself have been powerful and given me very little room to change. So I’ve been talking to God about all this for a few weeks and these are the words that have come to mind:
“You LOVE food? Maybe a little too much. Love is a pretty powerful emotion…”
“Bring this struggle to me, daily, moment by moment if you have to. I can handle it.”
“If you really want to do something about this, I can help.”
And so when I saw that picture, I did bring my burden to God.
“God help me. You know I can’t do this without you. Help me to be willing, to give up…and to try something new, because the old way isn’t working. Help me to just begin.”
And it was like a miracle…My desire to do something new, to give up my beloved carbs, grew beyond my desire to consume them. I was surrounded with support by my sister and her hubby (now back on the low carb diet), along with my family and friends. “Good for you.” “I’ll be praying for you.” “I can see a difference already.” (High Five) “I’m proud of you mom.” “You can do it.”
Well the truth is, I can’t do it! I have to participate…but really, I don’t have what it takes to stay the course. The good news is “I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.” He has given me everything I need—the willingness, the discipline, the encouragement—to have this victory. And He will give me what I need to run this race with perseverance.
I’m praying that instead of filling up on food, I’ll take this opportunity to fill up on God. More of Him, less of me…literally!
How about you? What are you struggling with? Have you given up? Or have you given something over and seen what God can do when we surrender?