Long time no write, sorry about the week delay! It's was a long, hard week for me mentally and physically. When God grows you it can be quite painful but I know, or rather people keep telling me, it's worth it. Vulnerability has been a great weakness of mine and I do believe God is pushing me hard core to crack right on open.....not something I am enjoying at all! To all those struggling with anxiety, be patient with yourself! You truly are doing the best you can! If you have a family member/friend who is struggling with anxiety be patient with them, don't try to understand it but love them through it. Now on to food... the best and worst part of life. Eventually more enjoyment than pressure will come but until then let's learn more about how wholeness and food connect.
Wholeness, "the state of forming a complete and harmonious whole; unity or the state of being unbroken or undamaged." In order to complete yourself one must eat food. This can be proven by the definition for food....
Food is considered "any nutritious substance that people or animals eat or drink, or that plants absorb, in order to maintain life and growth." Maintain life. You cannot be whole without the maintenance of life, the sustaining operation of your body. However by not unifying both hunger and full you can become broken and damaged quickly. Finding the balance between the definitions of hunger and full is tricky but brings about wholeness by bringing about a balanced (unbroken/undamaged) lifestyle.
Hunger is defined as, "a feeling of discomfort or weakness caused by lack of food, coupled with the desire to eat," or "have a strong desire or craving for." Recognize that food can fulfill this within your body's needs but cannot fulfill the complete harmony and unity of your entire wholeness journey. It is simply one of four categories.
Full is when your body, particular your stomach, is "containing or holding as much or as many as possible; having no empty space." We should never create a space that doesn't have room for God. Therefore, no empty space is never a good thing because it limits both the body's function and the hearts openness to unity with your Creator.
Everyone eats everyday. It is a constant thought on the brain. We eat at every social event. There is food at every gathering. My goodness, they are even starting to offer food or restaurants at most gyms! It literally is every where, whether we want it to be or not. So how do we combat indulging ourselves in a world that says it's okay? First off dieting is never the answer. For me even the word diet puts so many restrictions upon my choices I fail just because I like to rebel. However, finding a practical tool to help you get back on track is the way to go. Weight watchers is a great tool. Another one is eating from the earth, meaning cutting out processed foods as well as fast food and also seeking a nutrionist or that one friend who just does life excellently lol. Pop, aka soda, is just not good for you so try not to drink it more than once or twice a month if any (life is better without it). Speaking of drinks, limit all sugary drinks such as icees, alcohol, starbucks, dunkin donuts...if it's a drink that you bought, meaning not made at home, allow yourself the freedom once a week. I'm a bit more lenient with these in my current season, everyone is different. Plus I hear there are healthier choices at these places but I haven't found them yet (insert laugh here because I just haven't looked).
The most important part of living everyday life with food is not being afraid of it. If your friends want to go out to eat go! Just eat in moderation. If you struggle with this, put half of it in a to go box before you begin. Prepare your mind with meditation and scripture before you go to the restaurant, keeping the focus on Jesus and not the food. It is also okay to say no to any type of food centered event. But one must find the balance between avoidance and accepting too much.
It really does suck when you struggle so deeply with something you have to do daily to survive. When people become addicted to a certain food, go to food for comfort instead of hunger, or find satisfaction of their hunger for something else, like Jesus, in food it can be an endless cycle. I lived this cycle for years. Eating when I was happy, eating when I was sad, eating because I felt amazing, eating because I felt so awful...eating when insert any type of emotion or uncomfortable situation. The real issue was not the addiction to food or emotional/comfort eating, it was the hole inside myself that I was trying to fill with food instead of God. Yes, I have been a follower of Jesus for years; however, I only let Him in certain rooms of my life. I boxed God up and only allowed Him within certain parts of my life. For instance, I enjoyed being angry, holding grudges, and justifying my unhealthy feelings, or so I thought. Instead of dealing with these issues or people that I had allowed to create these feelings inside me, I avoided it and ate instead. Whether you are avoiding something, emotionally unhealthy, or choosing food over a problem, there is hope.
Will it ever fully go away? It depends on what God's plan is. I know this sounds so cliche. I very rarely struggle with emotional eating since God decided it was time for healing, but I am not you. His plan for you is not the same as mine. It may be your forever struggle, but guess what? That is okay! Return back to our scripture verses within this series for freedom! The first verse is Colossians 3:1-2 which states, "Since, then, you have been raised with Christ, set your hearts on things above, where Christ is, seated at the right hand of God. Set your minds on things above, not on earthly things." It is really hard to desire food over God when you are constantly thinking about Him. The second verse is Romans 12:1-2 and it states, "Therefore, I urge you, brothers and sisters, in view of God’s mercy, to offer your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and pleasing to God—this is your true and proper worship. Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will." If you are focused upon creating the best sacrifice for God to use then you will choose the apple over the ice cream. Or if you do choose the ice cream, make it a small instead of the large. Focus on transforming your life to let others see Jesus in you as well as to continue transforming yourself to be within God's perfect will for YOUR life. The last scripture verse is found in 1 Corinthians 10:31. It commands, "So whether you eat or drink or whatever you do, do it all for the glory of God." Don't you find it freeing to know that God knew we would desire food and drink over Him so He commands it to bring Him glory..... Selah (pause and think about this).
Tips and Tricks:
1. Pick a person you trust a ton and ask them to come alongside you to keep you accountable, asking you daily what you have had to eat.
2. Tell God how you feel, let Him in every box (every part of your life)!
3. Pray before you chew anything!
4. Never eat seconds.
5. If you are hungry but just ate something wait 30 minutes and drink 2 glasses of water.
6. Make a list of stuff you are avoiding and hang it up somewhere.
7. Pack your lunch the night before.
8. Accept your flaw and allow God to change you. This can look like writing a prayer out, sharing with a friend, or repeating over and over your flaw and God's intent for freedom and redemption.
9. Eat when you are hungry! Just choose wisely!
10. Drink a glass of water while getting ready in the morning, this starts your body out right, gets your tummy moving, and if you are someone who wakes up hungry it will prevent over eat at breakfast.