“Food is not the problem.”
This is something many people don’t believe. They may discover that I eat at McDonald’s so frequently that the employees all know me and my kids by name–and what we order, too! Often, people who discover that I released 100 pounds while eating french fries, donuts, and pizza with all meat topping are incredulous…It flies in the face of conventional “dieting” wisdom!
The truth is, this has never been and will never be, about the food. If you have been with me for this journey at all, you know that a few weeks ago, God laid on my heart the fact that I have made it about food again. While I have stayed at this size for just over a year now, there is this sense of fear that just won’t dissipate. Why? Because I see that my heart STILL needs to change. Left to my own devices, I would…simply…go nuts. Leave me alone with refrigerated cookie dough and I will inhale it raw or cooked and simply blink at you and say, “Is this all there is? ” (Visions of Winnie-the-Pooh come to mind…looking for that “smakerel of something sweet…” )
Recently, God convicted me that as long as I allowed my lust and greed for food to go unbridled “between 0 and 5,” I would continue to struggle with lusting for food outside of 0 and 5. While I am “holding it together” and not getting bigger, God has pointed out to me…HE WANTS MY HEART. He wants my passions to be for HIM. My obsession to be HIM. He wants all of me.
Someone I know eagerly embraced the teaching of Thin Within. She had been on the dieting merry-go-round all her life and the teaching of eating whatever you wanted as long as you were hungry and didn’t eat past satisfied delighted and thrilled her. She and her husband both released a lot of weight. The thing that I noticed though (it reflected back to me my *own* issues) was that now, instead of eating food all the time, she planned for her next meal all the time. She wanted her 0 – 5 to be “spent” on something totally wonderful so she would search for recipes, plan out what she would fix and how, go to the store and shop for the best ingredients and spend loads of time in the kitchen preparing whatever it was.
While this “worked” for her to release weight, I couldn’t help but wonder if her “addiction” might not be the same as it always was…thoughts about food, plans for food, dreaming of food, reading about food…it was still food.
Again, I say this not by way of judgment, but as confession as God used this precious woman to show me that I have been doing the same–but because I don’t like to cook, it just looks different in my life than it does in hers.
God wants to be what makes my heart skip a beat! Not the double-decadent chocolate cheesecake they serve at the deli in town. 🙂 When I daydream, he wants me to think on things not of this world, but things eternal…While I know that he is realistic and doesn’t for one minute think I will be “heavenly minded” 100% of the time, I know the Lord hopes that my heart is SET on things above, not on earthly things and that I am making headway in this.
So The Lord’s Table…the lesson where “Food is Not the Problem” totally resonates with me. Gosh, if food WERE the problem, all the fixes that we have out there to fix the food would work and Americans wouldn’t be getting bigger and bigger in spite of low-fat this and low-cal that…and the bizillions of dollars we spend on gym memberships and diet plans would make a difference! We have done a great job as a country of fixing our food to make it better.
But we are so reticent to allow God to fix our hearts. Then, if we *are* willing, we don’t stick with it…going back to that dieting mentality…”I don’t feel like trying any more…I think I wil quit!” (There is that eating the seed thing again vs. sowing the seed…)
We can’t quit this thing! This is about becoming Christlike! This is NOT a diet! It is about having the mind of Christ formed and shaped in us–even where food is concerned! So how could we quit?
The writer of TLT points out that the world’s way of dealing with overweight has an appearance of wisdom…and some of us love that scientifc-y way we get to feel when we learn metabolic this’ and that’s about food or count, graph, chart, etc…
But that is all a ruse. We want God to do a deep work in us, don’t we? I know I do. I want him to use this struggle I have had with food to teach me to depend on Him, to love Him, to need Him, to be satisfied in HIM. It isn’t about the food! It is all about my heart and surrendering it to HIM. It is, ultimately, about HIM!
Summary for Day 5’s teaching in TLT: Food is not the problem. It’s not what I eat, but why and how much…and why I eat that amount. What motivates me to eat? This needs to be dealt with in my life. My flesh is NOT to determine my eating.
Application: Is there any way in which I continue to make this be about food? Have I really forsaken my adoration of food? Or have I just changed the way in which it is manifest? (Gone from overeating to planning/fixing/shopping etc…) How will I change my thinking and my behavior today to reflect that I want to change my heart?
“Food is not the problem.”
Once again this is exactly what God has been teaching me. When I lost 50 lbs with WD back 10 years ago I truly did turn it into a “diet” and was constantly thinking about food and what I could/couldn’t eat, planning, how long until I’d be hungry if I ate an apple/cereal/sandwich etc. etc. etc. And then eventually much of the weight came back. My fear is to once again end up there–to be overconsumed with what I eat, planning, legalizing etc as well as the fear of gaining the weight back. And I know that at the heart of all this is being surrendered to the Lord. You put my thoughts into words with:”We can’t quit this thing! This is about becoming Christlike! This is NOT a diet!”
Amen. What does if profit a woman if she loses weight and gains a slim figure, only to find out she has lost her soul? I will not give up or in until I’m sold out to Him.
Righto ladies. This is exactly why I failed at Weighdown. I had not been so conscious of food, I had dieted and failed. I succeeded at Weighdown, but failed to change my heart (I take total blame, because the instructor emphasized changing the heart). As a teacher, I know I must teach, reteach, review, etc. so I think as a student of change I must do the same thing. I want to make the change. I want God to be pleased and give me another test. However, when I am hungry I do have the urge to think about food. PLEASE DON’T TAR AND FEATHER ME, but when I am just a little hungry, I have been eating cucumbers or one cracker, so that I will not be obscessing with the food. It doesn’t matter if I have supper later, hunger still comes. And then I go about my activity without thinking so much about food. I don’t want it to be a god to me even if I am losing weight. I am sure thinwithin book deals with this, but I am only on day 3 so I feel peace about my choice.