This week we are reading and completing the material in chapters 16, 17 (again), and 18. Once again, please pace yourself.

This week’s assignment:

1.) Continue your list of God’s attributes

2.)  Take time each day to praise God for some of the attributes on your list.

3.) Keep adding to your gratitude journal.  I would love to hear what God is doing through the practice of keeping a gratitude journal. Share it with us if you feel so led.

4.) Read and complete day 16. Re-read day 17. Read day 18. All reading and activities through page 192.

5.)  Day 16 provides opportunities to evaluate how you are doing in this journey–to evaluate your progress toward the goals you may have set in Day 3. I want to caution you not to fixate too much on size or weight. Even if you are not yet noticing a change in the way your clothes fit, ask the Lord to show you what work He is doing inside of you. He says he IS doing a new thing. He says he WILL finish that which He has begun. Then, if you sense His Spirit leading you personally to do so, implement the suggestions in chapter 16. Please listen to His voice, though. That is the most important part of this entire journey!

6.) During Day 16, you are asked to dig into your heart, life, and past and recall “Significant Times” that happened to you. Last Monday, I did that very thing in my post last Monday, The Weight of Sexual Abuse. We know that the “Significant Times” exercise can be especially painful for some. Please pray about it and do as the Lord leads you personally. This could be an experience that offers the potential for breakthrough! Most of us have reasons that we have developed a tendency to eat more food than we need. As we evaluate some of these challenging “Significant Times,” we begin to dismantle the thing that may keep us stuck in repeating patterns that are, ultimately, ungodly. That is a good thing! If you feel overwhelmed, please don’t hesitate to call a favorite pastor or therapist to get godly wisdom to help you process what God is showing you. He intends for us to be healed and to break free from sinful patterns!

7.) As you re-read chapter 17, the chapter on Gratitude, does God speak to your heart in any way? It really is cool to know that when we wonder what God’s will is, we don’t have to wonder too terribly far. 1 Thessalonians 5:18 reminds us that giving thanks in all circumstances IS God’s will for us in Christ! How can you foster a life of gratitude? I promise you that it makes all the difference in the world!

8.) Now that you are farther along in your Thin Within journey, what do you think of the Hunger Graph? Is it a tool that the Lord may be using you to try? If so, visit this link at the Thin Within website. It will open a pdf file. If you want, you can print out page 2 of this document and use it each day as long as the Lord leads you to do so.

If you want to hear what God taught me about the hunger graph back in 2002, you can fast forward this video to about four minutes into it. At that point, Lori Robertson asks me about what God has shown me with the hunger graph. Some of you might find it helpful.

9.) In Day 18, we evaluate boundaries a bit. This is actually one of the most important teachings of Thin Within! Diets have lists of good foods, dangerous foods, bad foods, etc. Some of us struggle with letting go of those food labels we have held on to for so long. In Day 18, we use a different way of thinking about foods. This is where the second phase of Thin Within really kicks into gear. We prayerfully evaluate each food we are likely to eat and categorize them into “Pleasers,” “Teasers,” “Whole Body Pleasers,” and “Total Rejects.” Whatever you do, don’t skip this activity! It is INVALUABLE! 🙂 While all foods ARE permissible, we know that we know that we know that not all foods are beneficial at a given moment. If I am tired and cranky, the last thing I want to do is feed a total stomach-hungry zero with a candy bar. My taste buds would like it, but I would end up crankier and crash and burn within the hour! For me, in that situation, I can use discernment to know that it wouldn’t be beneficial to eat that candy bar, even though I *could*. My freedom tells me that I am free TO eat the candy bar, but I have also grown a bit to see that I am now free from HAVING to eat the candy bar! I can make another selection–a selection that, in that moment, will help me feel better. I can save the candy bar for a time when I am not a mess already! 🙂

Share your lists with us…what are some of your whole body pleasers? What are some of your total rejects? Everyone’s list will be different. Some people love fruits and vegetables. Some like me, don’t. The only way I like vegetables is in fresh salsa! Then it is truly a whole body pleaser for me! So guess what? I get a lot of my veggies that way! 🙂

10.) How are you doing? Is God growing you in any way? Are you seeing any changes emotionally? Spiritually? Physically? Tell us about it! I would love to have testimonials to share with Judy and Arthur Halliday or Joe and Pam Donaldson!

11.) Come to a chat this week! We would love to have you. Even if you can only come for 15 minutes, I hope you will give it a try. Visit this link to find out when, how, and where!

Ever onward! God IS doing a new thing! Praise Him!