When I joined a Thin Within online class, Heidi Bylsma asked me to blog about my journey. I’m glad she did. Her request required me go the distance. I had to read the lessons, participate in the online discussion, and apply the principles in order to write about my experience.
Unlike previous attempts to lose weight, I didn’t obsess with food. I didn’t search for recipes to help me cook “light” or “eat smart.” Instead, I learned about portion control, and using food to satisfy my hunger instead of an outlet for my emotions. In time, my appetite shrank and I felt satisfied with less food.
My husband kept asking, “Is that all you’re going to eat?”
I’d respond, “I’m full.” Unable to believe it myself.
Then I was faced with a whopper of a challenge. During the last two weeks of the twelve-week Thin Within class, my husband and I went on a cruise. I shuddered when I first saw the all-you-can-eat buffet with so many enticing options. I had access to delicious food twenty-four seven.
- Would this vacation turn my successful weight loss into a shipwreck?
- Would I be miserable avoiding particular foods like the soft-serve ice cream?
- Would I regret not indulging myself with this smorgasbord of international cuisine?
I took a deep breath. Lord, help me. Then He reminded me, that I’d be onboard for sixteen days. There was no pressure (or need) to taste all the food in one day. I took tablespoon portions—just enough to satisfy my hunger. And the few times I went for a second helping, I found the brief taste wasn’t worth feeling stuffed and bloated.
As it turned out, the buffet line was my best option because I could control my portions compared to the ship’s sit-down restaurants where they served you a set amount that I hated to waste. So the cruise showed me that buffet lines may tempt me, but food is not the enemy.
I am the master of my plate. And I felt victorious when I returned home and discovered I hadn’t gained weight.
Thanks to Thin Within, my attitude towards food has changed.
- My taste buds don’t take priority.
- Vacations and family celebrations are no less fun if I’m not stuffing my face.
- My day isn’t ruined if I don’t eat potato chips with my sandwich.
I also learned the value of TW’s nation-wide online community. I loved reading my fellow classmates’ comments. Their words assured me: I’m not alone in my struggle to lose weight or my low self-esteem when it comes to my body. The members spurred me on—emotionally and spiritually. I couldn’t help but love my classmates and want to pray for them.
Finally, my greatest lesson was a reminder that only Christ…not food…can satisfy my heart. By God’s grace, He enables me—one day at a time—to live without food ruling my heart. There’s freedom in Christ. And that’s the sweetest gift of all.