Last week my husband’s doctor called him back in to follow up on annual lab work he had run. Matt asked me to go with him. The doctor came in and said he was shocked that my husband had not yet had a heart attack and told him that he is just 11 points away from becoming diabetic. While we were thankful the report wasn’t of cancer, we were somewhat surprised to find out that my husband’s poor food choices had caught up with him. Why we were surprised I’m not quite sure.
So, for the past week I’ve been working on menu plans that incorporate more of what the doctor recommended, which is a Paleo-type plan. In doing this I’ve also been praying over my husband and asking the Lord to search my own heart (I’ve learned this is a good practice when anything out of our normal routine confronts us). In fact, Psalm 139:23-24 says, “Search me, O God, and know my heart; test me and know my anxious thoughts. Point out anything in me that offends you, and lead me along the path of everlasting life.” I wanted to see where I might have played a part in this medical report.
I felt the need to do this because for years I’ve worked on my own weight/health issues but have failed to encourage my husband to do the same. I have also neglected to help set him up for success. Instead, I have gently but not so effectively suggested that he eat healthier. When this was met with resistance I backed off and made white rice for him and brown/wild rice for me, bought sugar-packed ice cream for him and fat-free yogurt for me, let him add cheese to everything, etc.
And when going out for dinner I would choose grilled fish while he ordered the chicken fried steak. I simply didn’t want the conflict and because he is a grown man I knew he could make his own choices. What the Lord showed me as I’ve searched my heart is that He has appointed me the manager of my home (Proverbs 31: 12 says, “She brings him good, not harm, all the days of her life.” And, vs. 27 says, “She carefully watches everything in her household and suffers nothing from laziness.” As a home manager I do menu planning, grocery shopping, and execution of meals, even if only for the two of us (empty nesters). I am responsible to look well to the ways of my household, and this includes the way we eat and the provision of healthy choices.
One of the most beautiful truths found in Thin Within living is the discovery and realization of our whole body pleasers, which for me is found in healthy eating. The result of living that truth is that my annual lab results came back just two weeks ago and everything looks good. At almost 54 years old, that’s exactly the report you want to receive. That’s in large part to making healthy choices when eating 0-5. I want that to be the testimony of my husband and anyone else I choose to feed. That’s not to say that on occasion and down the road we can’t indulge in a small treat. What I’m saying is that it can no longer be the norm for us and I can no longer be the provider of poor indulgences. Because in the long run it’s killing my husband, and offending the Lord. And that is not the legacy I want surrounding my name, nor is it the abundant life Jesus came to give us (John 10:10 – “The thief’s purpose is to steal and kill and destroy. My purpose is to give them a rich and satisfying life.”)
As I write this we’re in the middle of our “new normal” and my husband is feeling better, losing some weight, and embracing good health. He’s also finding his 5 much easier, and we’re enjoying mealtimes together much more. Yes, it’s taking more effort to help plan better but it feels so good to know I’m doing my part to create an environment that says, “You are worth this to me!”
So I’ve stopped looking to my selfish self and my weight/health and am paying more attention to the man God’s given me. I own my responsibility in having helped cause him harm, and am determined to “bring him good, and not harm” all the days of our lives. If he wants or chooses to go off course it will be because he got in the car and drove to get something, not because I had it sitting in the pantry waiting for him. Thankfully, we’re so committed to turning this report around with the Lord’s help; I can’t imagine him doing such a thing! We’re in this together and so our chances of success are much greater. Hallelujah!
So what about you? Are you bringing good and not harm to those in your household, by the food choices you make and in the provision you offer those you love? Rejoice in knowing the plan Thin Within offers and the revelation it brings of what the “abundant life” really looks like.