Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Drifting Off Course



Are you drifting off course?

"Cross-examine me O Lord."                   Psalm 26:2 (TLB)


“Are you drifting off course?” It was a question that gripped me, maybe tripped me as I read Bob Gass’ devotional recently (www.bobgass.com/todaysword.php).

My answer, unfortunately, is a firm yes. I am drifting off course. I have gained six pounds. And this seemingly insignificant amount of weight is showing up in all the graduation pictures, in my tighter fitting clothing. And in the way I’m feeling…uncomfortable, a little hysterical, and bordering on self hate!

In the past 1½ years, I have lost and kept off 30 pounds.

This didn’t just happen. In fact, at first when I saw the numbers were up on the scale, my reaction was, “The heck with it. Maybe I’m just gonna be fat for the rest of my life.” I knew this wasn’t a good attitude, but I was so tired of the lifelong battle.

The journey started with a prayer, a cry, really.  “Please help me, God, I don’t want to work on this again. I’m not up for the challenge anymore. Help me want to!” I prayed for self-discipline, which I woefully lack when it comes to food. I needed God’s strength in my weakness. I surrendered the struggle to Him.

Soon, with continued prayer, I desired to lose weight, to be healthier. I focused and was very intentional. I started regular exercise, walking and/or working out at least five times a week. I shifted my eating away from white carbs and sugar, and towards lean protein, veggies, fruit.

It worked! I lost pounds quickly at first, and then it slowed down to a pound every week or so…but I continued to lose.

The holidays came. You know…the ones back in December? I allowed myself a few treats and exercised less. By January, I was up a couple of pounds. No big deal. Actually I was thrilled it wasn’t more. I determined to get back to my full exercise routine and get rid of all those holiday goodies.

Then, I had a bad fall and sprained my ankle. For several weeks, I couldn’t walk or work out. I had to cut back a little more on food to maintain my weight…but I didn’t.

As the months wore on, the pounds have reappeared, just as they disappeared, slowly. Now I’m up six pounds. I feel that old familiar shame, “Oh, no, here I go again. I’m  getting fatter… No, no, I’m not going there again. I’m stopping the little sneaky snacks and weekend sweets NOW. On Monday….or maybe Tuesday…oh, what the heck, it’s the weekend again…”

Oh man, this is the exact thinking that got me heavy in the first place. And this is the day I cry out, “Help me God! I cannot do this without your strength.”

Thanks, Bob, after a bit of cross-examination between me and God, I’m seeing clearly the error of my ways. Making a change takes staying on course--hard work, determination, and reliance on The power that is higher, greater, mightier.

And thanks to you God, because You are with me, so nothing can come against me.

How about you? Are you drifting off course? Are you struggling to make a change? Backsliding in an area where you’ve made great strides? Why not make today the day you get back on track…and ask God for His strength, power, help, guidance. He will deliver!



5 comments:

  1. so true! It's the frog in the boiling water- the water heats up slowly and he never notices until it's too late. So good you're noticing!

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  2. Oh, I totally relate to this one, Elise. I sort of gave up on losing my extra weight years ago, which is not healthy and not a good example even for my grown daughters. I always appreciate your honesty and think you should post more. :)

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    1. Thanks so much, Julie! I'm telling you I really had to pray about my "want to." That's a continuing prayer...

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  3. Drifting, like the boat in the tide, the water that looks so loverly in the photo is just like life, taking us slowly, imperceptibly away from our goal. But aren't we always drifting? I know I am! The catch is the keep your eye on the target and keep making course corrections!

    Thanks for the reminder to keep our eyes on the prise and to keep steering towards Him!

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  4. Yes, Barbara. There's a story of the frog in the lukewarm water. The heat keeps getting turned up imperceptibly...and before he knows it he's cooked. We have to pay attention to the slow slippery slide away from our goals. And I know I need the step by step assistance of God!

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