Strength For Today

A journey of keeping my heart, mind, and body in TODAY

Peace

on February 6, 2014

I am currently a part of an amazing Online Bible Study called Made to Crave, by Lysa Terkuerst.  This is the first online Bible study I have ever done.  I didn’t know what to expect, so I went in expecting nothing.

We are at the tail end of the 3rd week of the study.  Our focus this week is on deepening our relationship with God through our struggles with food and/or other such addictions or issues.  It is a good focus for me.  This study has really had me reflecting on the way I have viewed food and my body for the majority of my adult life.

Much has been revealed to me through reading the book and engaging in some of the discussions surrounding it.  I have really had my eyes opened to the main reason I couldn’t get my bulimia under control.  I thought I was entering into the study to hit my bulimia head on.  To release the shame by releasing the secret to other women who had “food issues”.

I was way off.  The focus of this study, at least for me, isn’t that I “learn” how to get my episodes under control, like I thought it would be.  This study, for me, is about learning to accept my body exactly as it is, and to replace my idols of food and body image with the One and Only TRUE God, Christ Himself.

This week’s word is #peace.  God’s peace has been incredibly tangible for me this week.  I have gone through a lot of complicated situations this week.  God’s peace has remained constant through it all.

The other night I was looking at my body.  This body that I have been obsessing about since I was old enough to begin paying attention to my body.  I’ve never thought I was skinny ‘enough’, or pretty ‘enough’.  I always thought my stomach was fat, even before I had children.  One way I learned to cope with that feeling of being fat, was to binge on the foods I craved, and then throw it back up so I didn’t have to consume the calories.  It seemed innocent enough at first, and it actually made sense to me for quite some time.

Recently (within the past 3 years) I have lost nearly 50 pounds and actually look totally different than I did before (God really is in the business of creating us anew).  I have to be honest and say that I am still not at “peace” with my body.  I want to be at peace with it.  I want you to think I am at peace with it.  But none of that is fact.  I still am not comfortable with certain areas of my body.  I realize that this does not honor God because I am choosing to serve my body image rather than my God.

I stood in front of the mirror the other day, thanking God for my gray hairs and wrinkles.  I thanked Him that life is a journey and that I get to stay along for the ride.  I thanked Him for the areas of my body which I find dissatisfying.  I know that this body I now dwell in, is not my own.  It is a temple for God’s Holy Spirit to dwell.  (I am not speaking in arrogance here….check out the book of Romans and 1 Corinthians).  God is amazing, and He is revealing things to me through this study.

I  pray for healthy choices to become healthy habits, healthy habits to become healthy character,  and healthy character to become  healthy living.  When I live in a state of gratitude for the body that God has given me.  When I honor Him by thanking Him for my body and treating it with respect (by eating right, exercising, and making the choice not to binge), He in turn blesses me with a peace about myself that surpasses all understanding.  The peace I can attain through a constant state of gratitude and prayer, is a peace that doesn’t come from me.  It is a peace that can exist in the middle of chaos.  It is the peace that can calm a raging storm.  It is the peace that can only come from the Lord Himself.  Which is why this study has been so amazing.  I may not feel at peace with my body at this time in my life, and perhaps I may never feel total peace in this area.  However, I can experience peace by choosing to keep my eyes OFF my body image and ON my Creator.

Interesting reflection….when I am immersed in God’s peace….I never feel like doing anything that could cause harm to my body, soul, or mind.  I don’t think that this “food” study actually has anything to do with “earthly food”, and everything to do with the “food” that comes from God Himself – the Bread of Life and the Living Water.  The craving that TRULY satisfies.

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8 responses to “Peace

  1. Wow you just blessed my heart this morning reading your journey with the opposite of my problem which is loving food more than my body. We are both in this journey together learning how to change and really give our bodies to Christ. For the first time in my life, I know I can change and am changing already. When I realized our word for the week was PEACE that peace that passeth all understanding just covered me with my exercise, my food intake and how I have failed God all these years and how I have sinned. I knew in my heart I was, but really could not get control. We’ve got this! So glad you joined us in this MTC and welcome to your first OBS. I’ll never forget my first and there was no turning back. Each one has changed my heart, my life and walk with Him! Hugs sweet sister. Debbie W. (OBS Team Leader/Facebook Group Leader/Blog Hop Team)

    • Hello Debbie! Thank you so much for your encouraging words! Yes, I am absolutely with you that this is a journey of “learning how to change and really give our bodies to Christ.” I LOVE that! Romans 12:1 tells us that giving our bodies to Him as a living sacrifice IS OUR SPIRITUAL ACT OF WORSHIP! AMEN AND AMEN! I so love connecting with all of the amazing women God continues to place in my path along this journey! Thank you for being one of them! Many Blessings to you on this journey friend!

  2. prunable says:

    Wow, wow, wow!! I just love your heart, Dawn!! Thankful for wrinkles? Thankful for gray hair? Thankful for areas of our bodies that are dissatisfying? Yes, ma’am…these DO show that we’ve been allowed to continue on this fantastic journey of life on this world. AMEN!

    Thank you so much for sharing your heart today. I’m so thankful you’ve joined the wonderful, wonderful world of OBS and sharing the insights God is showing you!

    In His love,
    Pat (OBS Blog Team)

    • Thank you Pat! Our God truly is an AWESOME God! Trust me, I am not thankful for those things all of the time. When I’m not actively choosing gratitude, however, I am stuck in the muck of negative thinking! Today, I am so eternally grateful that God has freed me from the negative thought cycles. Just for today, however. I need to start all over again tomorrow….and the tomorrow after that….and the tomorrow after that! :o) Blessings to you on your journey!

  3. RaZella says:

    I totally agree with you. This study is about more than earthly food, it really is about our spiritual nourishment in God! Thank you for your transparency with your journey. I have also faced the same battle you face in my teenage years and early 20s. While in many ways I have overcome it, mentally, the battle continues. There is the temptation to “go back to what worked”, even though the truth is, it never really worked, because it never really filled the place in me that only God could fill. So happy to hear His peace is surrounding you more and more. Amen for our great and awesome God!!!!!

    • Yes, AMEN and AMEN! Thank you for the encouragement. Some days I feel like I will never break through to the other side of bulimia…and it is on those days that I am FORGETTING that all I really need to do to experience breakthrough is TAKE MY EYES OFF OF MYSELF, and put them on the Lord. He NEVER fails me, He is 100% Faithful! His Amazing Grace is just that. Amazing!

  4. Missy says:

    Hi Dawn – thank you SO much for sharing this deep part of your heart. This line hear spoke right to me: “I pray for healthy choices to become healthy habits, healthy habits to become healthy character, and healthy character to become healthy living.” AMEN! Praying that right along with you and also lifting you up as you continue to immerse yourself in Him and His peace day by day.

    • Blessings on your journey as well Missy! WE serve an AMAZING God, and He speaks to us through a multitude of ways…even the internet! Amazing, isn’t it! There are NO limitations to the Power of our Creator! God BLESS Sweet Sister!

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