Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Tackling weightier issues....

Pardon the pun! I am talking about weight here!

A while back I got a book for myself, called "Thin Again: A Biblical Approach to Food, Eating and Weight Management" by Judy Wardell Halliday, RN, and Arthur W. Halliday, M.D. I never gave this book much of a chance, because I couldn't identify with some of the content personally, but I've decided to give it another chance, and this time with a more open mind.

The back cover of the book asks,

Do you find yourself preoccupied with food?

Do you eat when you feel depressed?

Has food become your best friend or your worst enemy?

Have you failed repeatedly in your weight loss efforts?

And they promise this book can help, if you've answered yes to any of the questions, I answered yes to all of them!

Now, I'm not going to do a book review or a book report, but I am going to re-read this book and try and apply its teachings to my life. A lot of it makes good sense, and a lot of it sounds like me, and I think the problem I had with it last time was allowing the label of "disordered eating" to apply to me, I had to remove the stigma and the preconceived notions about that term before I felt comfortable acknowledging that I don't have a healthy relationship with food. I've been deluding and misleading myself into believing that I can correct my issues with food on my own, but look where I'm at with that? Still overweight, still plotting and planning and scheming on how to lose it, but absolutely no further ahead.

So, today I'm looking at the book's list of causes of disordered eating, and of them all the only one I can really say applies to me, is having been a very sensitive child, which I think I definitely was, and well, I still am very sensitive. I've always used food as comfort, and for celebration, and as medication for an emotional hurt. Its a deeply ingrained pattern in my life, and I think if I could have changed it on my own, I would have by now. Thin Again suggests that we're satisfying a spiritual hunger with food, which may temporarily silence our hunger pains, but never adequately or for long.

My challenge to myself is recognizing that I eat too many times when I am not actually hungry, but rather have a spiritual need to be filled, or possibly an uncomfortable emotion that needs to be dealt with, like loneliness or depression or grief. This will tie in with my marriage and with grief issues with Everett, and also with the daily stressors of life. I need to start learning better and more effective coping mechanisms, like prayer and journaling etc... and not immediately turn to ice cream or chocolate or left overs to calm my nerves and prevent emotional outbursts.

What's wrong with letting out those emotions anyway? What's so scary about unpacking those feelings and examining them and dealing with them in a productive way so they don't keep coming back to haunt us? I don't know why I'm so hesitant to speak up when something is bothering me, again, I have a task to work on.

Romans 8:1-3 says
1 With the arrival of Jesus, the Messiah, that fateful dilemma is resolved. Those who enter into Christ’s being-here-for-us no longer have to live under a continuous, low-lying black cloud.2 A new power is in operation. The Spirit of life in Christ, like a strong wind, has magnificently cleared the air, freeing you from a fated lifetime of brutal tyranny at the hands of sin and death.3 God went for the jugular when he sent his own Son. He didn’t deal with the problem as something remote and unimportant. In his Son, Jesus, he personally took on the human condition, entered the disordered mess of struggling humanity in order to set it right once and for all

I really like "A new power is in operation". I love the revelation that Christ is a new power and with faith in him we can give him the control and be free of our struggles and that dark cloud that hangs over head.

Jesus personally took on the "human condition, entered the disordered mess of struggling humanity" and he set it right once and for all!

Its the human condition to struggle and I love knowing that by faith in Jesus, I can struggle less and succeed more, in releasing worries and hurts and past disappointments, and I can become less burdened and experience real freedom. That's pretty exciting!



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