My church is doing the Made to Crave book/video series by Lysa Terkeurst. I've read about 6-7 chapters of the book and we watched our one video and I've started the participants guide. I tend to be something of a rule follower, at least in the beginning. And I've realized a few fairly profound things. One friend suggested journaling, which I don't disagree with, but I feel like a few of the realizations ought to be shared. In case someone else can realize they have as similar thought, pattern, problem, whatever.
One of the first things was something Lysa said during the first video. That this obsession and craving for food constantly, this replacing God in our hearts and minds with food obsessions and thoughts and plans etc is like a war. 1 Peter 2:11 says "Dear friends, I urge you, as foreigners and exiles, to abstain from sinful desires, which wage war against your soul" And at first glance that seems kind of strong wording for something as simle as food, but if you truly consider how you interact with food, it may be true for you too. I often spend minutes and sometimes up to a half hour or more thinking, pondering, justifying, rationalizing, deciding the simplest things. Should I go get a pizza or should I make something at home. Should I drive across town to get the super delicious Chinese food I adore, or should I make something at
home. I have literally spent half hour to an hour going back and forth in my mind trying to decide if I have the money, if I've been good enough with my other food, if I deserve it etc. And as my friend KG pointed out, it is definitely like a war. That realization alone has freed me from a lot of the warring.
Just last night I went to Logli to get a movie from Redbox and as I pulled out I thought "Oh, I should run and get Chinese! Wait, I'm not sure if I have the money for that. Well, I did just babysit last night and got paid cash ..." And just that quickly I was able, for the first time I can ever remember, to say "Nope, I don't need Chinese. I'm not sure where my finances sit. I'm going home to eat something I already have." And I did. VICTORY!!!
Another realization I had has to do with my love language. I am a physical touch person. I always have been. I realized that eating, food, chocolate, cakey-goodness, coke, sugar-laden coffee, are all ways of attempting to fill up that Touch Bank that is nearly empty most of the time. The worst part about this realization is that I don't really have a way around it. God, in all his power and might and grace and mercy and amazing wonderfulness, cannot re-incarnate himself simply to come down and give me a hug. Well, He can, I just don't think he will. Sometimes I can get a similar sensation through thinking of him and imagining him hugging me etc, but it's not quite the same. I've asked friends at various points to rub my arm, tap my knee, ruffle the back of my hair, give me a hug; but most haven't done much more of that than they ever did before. So, this will be an ongoing place of work for me. If you know me, feel free to give me a tap or a hug or whatever you're comfortable with. Or send your kids over to give me a hug, they work just as well, sometimes better. ;)
In Chapter 1 of the book she talks about that commercial for a weigh-loss program that personifies Hunger/Cravings as a small orange creature which dogs a woman's every step.
She asked you to consider what your cravings "look" like. I thought about it for a minute and immediately discarded this particular orange guy. Then the picture came to me. My Hunger, My Craving is a parrot on my shoulder. He gets louder and Louder and LOUDER until I give in to him. But Polly never wants a cracker. He wants cake, or cookies, or cupcakes, or brownies, or cinnamon bread or pasta or coke or another coke or another coke. As with many things in my life, once I realize something like this, it immediately starts to lose power. But then, I'm also at the very beginning of my journey here, so here's hoping that I can focus on Philippians 4:13 "I can do All Things through Christ who gives me strength." And that I am choosing to be Empowered and not focusing on being Deprived.
I'm still processing through my most recent revelations, but I will tell you it was in Romans 8:5-10. Just this morning verses 5-6 blew me away!
"For those who live according to the flesh are concerned with the things of the flesh, but those who live according to the Spirit with the things of the Spirit. The concern of the flesh is death, but the concern of the Spirit is life and peace!!"