Words Have Weight

Words Have Weight


Written by Heather DeJesus Yates

Friend, I am a writer, and the constant battle is in sharing my words. (I’m about to share a lot of them and it’s risky for me still!) If the enemy can shut down your voice he can shut down your soul, it’s an age-old tactic, and often comes when we allow him to direct our focus on others in comparison. If we compared ourselves with those who have spoken or lived before us – none of us would ever say a word! Your words are yours, and your story is yours, and all of it is handwritten by God for a purpose, and we need them! God doesn’t waste his creation, all his works point to His majesty…you are one of the many and as a woman – prized above all. As for mattering to Jesus, I struggle with trusting His nature as “good” because life has been and is Hard. Pain in childhood with assaults and whatnot, and hardships along the way in my own life or in the world we see daily, are fodder for the enemy’s lie that God is bad, can’t be trusted, comfort yourself at all cost with all means necessary. So God has been ever patient with me (who am I to accuse God of being bad??) and He has been woo’ing me with His goodness for some time now. He has slowly revealed to me His good intentions behind some of the darkest hours of my soul, and it is disorienting to realize that what I once thought was mean and cruel, was a gift for me. God has taken pain and transformed it into blessing, and I am practicing a pro-active trust for today’s pain – that it too can and will be worked together for some more good in my life (Rom 8:28). Also, I have thought about the woman in Jesus’ story, she lived in Samaria (where no respectable Jew went), and she was broken, an outcast socially because of her poor lifestyle choices, lonely, longing and grasping at Mr. Right Now to fill her emptiness. Did she matter? Not to those in her community. Was she an idiot? Some thought so. But what is Jesus’ thoughts toward her? What is Truth? John 4:4 reveals it to us, “Jesus NEEDED to go to Samaria…” Many took the longer route to avoid it but Jesus purposely went to the rejected place for the rejected woman. She needed Him, but He needed her too…He loved her, and went where she was and met her right in her “I don’t matter, I’m an idiot” season and spoke His Truth to her. She believed him too, afterall, He went out of His way (actually from Heaven to Earth), for rejected women…who else would do that? Because of her belief in Him, His truth – regardless of how others had treated her – SHE experienced freedom. AND lo and behold, she had overflow and shared His love and Truth with the same community that treated her wrongly. What?!? That’s a transformed life, not a slightly improved self-help plan in action. Sister was freed.

A lie I have believed is that life is hard, painful, scary, and God allows for it because He just wants me to suffer all the time…and cannot be trusted to care for me and comfort me, so I need to take care of myself and comfort myself in order to survive this wilderness until I make it Home. Like I said above, I’m learning that this is loaded with lies, like the one first launched at Eve, and made her doubt God, doubt His goodness, doubt His honesty. God used one word to describe Himself when He introduced himself to Moses in the cleft of the rock…and of all the words He could have chosen that would be true, He chose this one: goodness. God is good, and God is in control, and He works all things together for my good…no matter what mess I’m in. Therefore, whatever struggle or pain I face, God has a plan, and He has good for my soul…but it may not feel good for a while or in the way I expect. Comforting myself outside His boundaries for me will feel good for a moment or few, but it won’t BE good for me. Ps. 84:11 “God withholds no good thing from those who walk uprightly.” If He is withholding food from me, (not giving me hunger – or giving me satisfaction while I still have food to eat), than it is for a good reason that He is withholding it. If the food is good for me, He won’t withhold it…He’ll give me hunger and room to still eat before I’m satisfied. This may be a life-long lesson 🙂 Life is hard, it will bring pain and trials and I will suffer, but my hope is without end because God has goodness in Himself present with me in this life as well.

Looking for Victory?

Looking for Victory?

Am I alone in thinking this Thin Within journey is like the kids’ board game, Chutes and Ladders? Move your pawn forward to a particular space, then shoot up the ladder onto victory. Or land on a bad space (like eating too many cookies) and the pawn slides down the chute cause you have a tummy ache.

That’s me! One day, I’m moving ahead. Controlling my appetite. Tightening my belt. The next day, I over indulge and slide backwards. Drats! Foiled again! Takes forever to win. However, unlike the game whose progression is controlled by a spinning needle, I’m doing this to myself. Unless of course, the “devil made me do it.”

What is so difficult about not eating until I’m hungry and stopping when I’m a satisfied? The way I whine and limp along this 0-5 journey, you’d think someone asked me to race around the track in a wheelchair or swim freestyle with my eyes closed as though I’m blind. If anyone watched the Paralympic Games, you’ll understand. These disabled Olympians push their physical limits to win the race.

What’s my excuse for crossing my boundaries and giving up before I’ve reached my goal and won the prize? I’m not an athlete. But even the Apostle Paul writes in terms that inspires me to finish the race. 

“Therefore I run in such a way, as not without aim; I box in such a way, as not beating the air; but I discipline my body and make it my slave….” (1 Cor. 9:26,27).

“I press on to reach the end of the race and receive the heavenly prize for which God, through Christ Jesus, is calling us” (Phil. 3:14).

Hebrews 12-1-3

The cost of reaching and maintaining my God-ordained weight means I may have to suffer. But what’s wrong with suffering if the prize is a thinner, healthier me who feels good in her skin from the inside out. What if suffering is the means to help me listen to God so He enables me to walk in the Spirit instead of submitting to my fickle flesh which entices me to eat…what I want when I want.

Besides, does an empty stomach cause more (or less) suffering than a bloated belly ache accompanied by a heavy dose of guilt and regret? And why should emotional comfort and eating to numb my pain override my common sense to do what’s best for my body?

Great questions to mull over when I’m salivating for that Godiva chocolate.

The wonderful thing about Thin Within is that no one expects me to fight this battle or win the race/game on my own strength. The lessons constantly bring me back to God’s Word which teaches and trains me in the way I should go. 

That said, I’m also realizing the victory isn’t about self-discipline and buffeting my body as much as focus. Where am I looking for victory?

If success depends on human efforts alone….doing every lesson, filling out truth cards, my God list, my hunger charts, my not eating too many cookies…I’ll keep slip sliding backwards.

Instead,I must look to Jesus, the author and perfecter of our faith—who suffered and died for me—that I might live victoriously.

One step forward, and day at a time.

Stress Makes Me Munch

Stress Makes Me Munch

I admit I’ve eaten when I’m lonely or bored, but stressed? Never thought about it until I flew with my husband. We own a Taildragger plane, but I rarely fly with him because it STRESSES me out.

So imagine when he flew me further than my own backyard this past weekend. The stress in my body exceeded Mt. Shasta’s 14,000 foot peak. If I’d been an earthquake, my stress level would have been a ten on the Richter scale. If I was a cat, I’d have been hanging from the ceiling by my claws with my fur standing on end.

Forget Thin Within’s boundaries and counting the cost. When we landed at a small airport, armed guards couldn’t have kept me from the snack vending machine. I wanted my sweet, endurance prize—an Almond Joy.

So yeah, Stress triggers my eating button. If I smoked, I would have inhaled two cigarettes at the same time. If I was a gunslinger about to fight the bad guy, I would have choked down a double shot of whiskey.

However, as I stood in the lobby, waiting for my husband to refuel our plane, I stopped to observe and correct my actions. I realized my taut nerves made me buy that Almond Joy. Eating it, was no solution.


So I climbed into the backseat of our tandem-seat plane and tucked that mouth-watering baby inside the seat pouch in front of me. When the flight got bumpy, my eyes feasted on the package; imagined how it tasted. But I refused to eat it unless it was absolutely necessary.

Understand, my husband is an experienced aviator who’s flown his whole life. He’s safety conscious, especially with me, because he gets stressed when I’m screaming, “Not so high!” 

Everyone has their thing that makes them stressful. Mine is flying…actually, it’s being suspended in the air higher than ten feet. I feel the same way about aerial trams. So, I’ve had to “work” at not being stressed when I fly.

Here’s what I discovered in the cockpit that calms me and carries over into my life so I’m not a walking Almond Joy.

1) I listen to Christian praise music and meditate on the lyrics that talk about God’s presence and character.

2) I listen to imagery podcasts that help me control my breathing and relax my body.

3)  I pray for people rather than focus on myself, and relinquish my desire to control or fix their problems.

4) I recite Biblical Truths

5) I distract my mind by doing a Word Search. I also have an adult coloring book filled with scripture. Coloring books are popular because creativity relieves stress. I used to embroider and needle point to relax.

6) I read a light-hearted book.

7) I poke fun at myself and laugh.

8) I close my eyes and pretend I’m soaking in a warm bubble bath. 

These suggestions help me relieve stress…and avoid munching…whether both feet are on the ground, or I’m 10,000 feet in the air.

But honestly, when life gets crazy bumpy and it’s absolutely necessary….I munch on the Almond Joy. Only now I know to give half to my husband so I don’t consume all those calories. Why add guilt to stress? 



We have tools to use on this journey toward intuitive eating. Some come naturally and some come with some pain, but they all lead to a closer relationship with the Lord and they all lead to healing if we do the work needed to get there.

It started with a negative emotion. Anger. I had an issue going on in my life that was making me angry. And, it wasn’t just the anger that was causing problems but the obsessive thoughts that went along with the anger. My thoughts and obsessions about what was going on was becoming an idol and they were making me want to break my eating boundaries.

I’ve been in this community for almost two years, so I know the right tools to use when these situations come up, but I wasn’t using them. I had grown accustomed to dwelling on the problem. Have you ever felt like that? Sometimes we are so comfortable with the bad feelings that it takes a special circumstance to get us to want to change.

My special circumstance is taking a small group of ladies through Taste for Truth by Barb Raveling. I felt as a leader that it was about time I use our tools to work through what I was feeling. So I did. The first thing I did was make a commitment to my small group to go through the Anger and Annoyance questions in “I Deserve a Donut” by Barb Raveling. I completed my commitment, but it was difficult. I was weeping by the time I finished just the first couple of questions. Wow, now I know why it is so hard to actually do what helps us! I have to admit that even though it was difficult, I felt better when I completed my task.

The next day our lesson was on Truth Journaling. I took what I had written for the first question and used that for truth journaling. This opened my eyes to some things where I was in the wrong and believed lies instead of the truth.

The following day, I went back to complete our lesson on Day 21. I once again used my anger issue for this lesson. Barb asked us on Day 21 in Taste for Truth to focus on a trial that is going on right now. Then read Hebrews 12:1-15 and record everything it says about how God wants me to handle this trial and what He is hoping I will get out of it. Here is what I learned:

  1. Lord, You want me to lay aside the weight of this trial. It is not mine to carry.
  2. Lord, carrying weight that is not mine to carry is a sin. It is in essence saying that I should take care of my own trial instead of taking it to You. Lord, keep me from being ensnared by obsessive thinking which draws me into sin.
  3. Lord, You are calling me to endure this race I am running to You.
  4. Lord, You are telling me that the way to endure is to keep my eyes on You.
  5. Lord Jesus, You are the source and perfecter of my faith. I can’t grow in my faith without You.
  6. Lord Jesus, You called me as Your own and You feel joy in that.
  7. Lord Jesus, You endured the pain of the cross and suffered the shame of crucifixion for me, one of the sheep in Your fold. I praise You as You sit at Father God’s right hand in glory!
  8. Lord, as I look at Your example I see that as I walk with You and lean on You that I will not grow weary and lose heart.
  9. Lord, in my struggles against sin I am not doing well in resisting the pull. Lord, help me keep my eyes on You. Renew my mind as I turn to You.
  10. Lord, I am Your child; Your daughter. Let me not take Your discipline lightly. I know that Your discipline shows Your love for me. You desire my growth into the likeness of Jesus and You want Your will and glory to show forth from my life. That’s what I want too Lord!
  11. Lord, I can endure this suffering as Your loving discipline. Lord, show me what You want me to learn from this trial and show me how to use this knowledge to help others.
  12. Lord, do not let me forget that I am Your child and that You love me.
  13. Lord, I submit to Your discipline for my growth. Transform me and my life Lord. Make me holy for You are holy.
  14. Lord, even though I feel emotional pain right now, I know that Your discipline will lead to and yield the fruit of peace and righteousness.
  15. Lord, I submit and surrender to Your training.
  16. Lord, strengthen my tired hands and my weakened knees. I want my life to reflect Your glory and to show how You grow and transform me.

After working through this issue using the tools we have at our fingertips, I felt healed from my negative feelings. I shared with my friend and accountability partner Deanna Lewis that I felt like I had been washed on an old fashioned wash board, put through a wringer and now I have been hung up on a wash line to hang in the healing light of the SON! It was hard. It was difficult. But it was so worth it!

1.12If you are dealing with negative feelings and emotions that make you want to break your eating boundaries, may I introduce you to Freedom from Emotional Eating by Barb Raveling? There is more work for me to do and I am happy to announce that Deanna Lewis and I will be offering a group study of this book starting in mid-September that will end by the end of November.

This class is for people who already have the basics of Thin Within down and are ready for the next level.

We will not be discussing weight, diets or any jargon regarding good or bad food choices.  This way, we can be free to not be tempted to return to diet mentality while God is healing us from emotional eating.

Look for more information on the TW website soon.



A couple of weeks ago I shared about a recent detour I found myself traveling on. Detours are not a bad thing. They usually end up being a short trip off the path that leads back onto the road that leads to where you were headed. That is not the same thing as a roadblock. When we hit a roadblock, there is nowhere to go but back. When we hit a roadblock, it is time to turn around. This week I am going to share with you about a roadblock I hit, and how I had to allow God to change my perception about some things so I could turn around and find the right road to where I’m going.

Several large boulders block the W Road after a rockslide.

If you are reading this, I hope you are at least familiar with what Thin Within/Hunger Within is all about. The basics are we eat (imperfectly) within the boundaries of hunger and satisfaction or if you look at a hunger scale, our eating boundaries fall between 0 and 5. We also have 8 Keys to Conscious Eating. They are:

  1. Eat only when my body is hungry
  2. Reduce the number of distractions in order to eat in a calm environment
  3. Eat only when I’m sitting
  4. Eat only when my body and mind are relaxed
  5. Eat and drink only the food and beverages I enjoy
  6. Pay attention only to my food while eating
  7. Eat slowly, savoring each and every bite
  8. Stop before my body is full

These keys are just guidelines and not “diet rules” and we also give ourselves permission to no longer label food “good” or “bad” and can enjoy eating any food within our 0 to 5 eating boundaries.

My roadblock came from #5 in the Keys to Conscious Eating, and I want to share this with you dear reader, just in case you may have experienced the same thing.

Hissy FitSince coming into this wonderful community, I have been able to let go of so many man-made diet rules and the beliefs our culture holds about the benefit of certain foods over others. This has been a long process, and I still find myself questioning the freedom we have, but I keep marching on and I so enjoy the that freedom. I really feel that I am eating food in the way God planned. But, I did hit that roadblock. Some of the foods I was eating and enjoying, my body decided it didn’t enjoy. I sat there looking at that roadblock and seriously had myself a hissy fit. My hissy fit made me realize that these foods seemed to have an unhealthy hold on me (and they make me feel unhealthy).

I had such a conflict, for I had been eating the foods I enjoyed and here I needed to let go of some of those foods, because they were actually making me sick. I had to battle not going back into diet mentality. After all, wasn’t putting certain food items on a “no-no” list a diet? Wasn’t I promised that I could eat all foods with thanksgiving?

Dear reader, the Lord reminded me of some important things in our Thin Within/Hunger Within journey. There are 3 Phases in this program (taken from 1 Corinthians 6:12). They are:

  1. Phase 1 – Freedom Phase: “All Things are Permissible”
  2. Phase 2 – Discernment Phase: “Not all Things are Beneficial”
  3. Phase 3 – Mastery Phase: “I Will Not be Mastered by Anything”

He is leading me from Phase 2 into Phase 3. This is not easy for me, for I am letting go of some items that I really like to eat but no longer agree with me. But, because I want my recovery from disordered eating to point totally to the Lord, who is the show-me-the-right-path-imageOne I want to have total mastery over my life, my heart and my all, I am letting go and moving into this next phase of my journey. And, I am letting go of those foods. I have the freedom to say yes to any food and now, with God’s help, I also have the freedom to say no (even to foods I enjoy but my body doesn’t). It was time to face that roadblock and turn around, listen to my body and listen to the Lord. I had to let it go that I was not going on that road any further.

This is another process I needed to go through to show me once again that this journey is not just about food, how I eat or my weight. It is more about living my life in full surrender to the leading of the Holy Spirit because I serve and love my Abba Father who loves me so much that He wants what is best for me. That roadblock was important for me to turn my heart from some items that were mastering me (and actually hurting me) back to the only Master I want in my life.

How about you? Have you hit a roadblock and you are finding you have to make some tough decisions in order to turn around and get back on the right road? Take to heart what is said in Hunger Within…”Freedom that is melded with discernment and surrender to God’s leading produces a radiant body and a life of deep abiding joy.”