As of late, I have really been convicted of my eating habits and lack of physical activity. Well, it seems that everything has come to a head. I'd like to credit all of it to God for fitting in all of the pieces in a synergistic fashion.
Paved with good intentions
Growing up, I never had to worry about my weight or what I ate. In fact, obesity isn't an issue on either side of my family. But ever since becoming married, I succumbed to the "newlywed nine." Maybe it's unknowingly serving up myself a plate of the same portion that I dole out to my husband. Or since we've moved from a neighborhood to a condominium complex, I haven't been taking our dog on daily walks like I used to. Either way and for many more reasons than those, my clothes are ill-fitting. It dawned on me that the clothing industry will always provide a size of clothing to fit any shape I grow into or out of; i.e. there is no magical "ceiling" to stop me. I realized that I am an avid snacker too. Eating out of the box is such a bad habit for me! Nevermind the constant barrage of office parties or goodies that coworkers lure you with. And let's forget the fact that I majored in Health Promotion with a minor in Foods & Nutrition, geez...
So what caused a dramatic pause in my eating habits? Would you believe a section from my Bible study??
Flabbilicious and (not) loving it
I'm working through Shaunti Feldhahn's "For Women Only: what you need to know about the inner lives of men." Our theme for last week was entitled, "Keeper of the Visual Rolodex" which focused on men and the temptations they face since being so visually wired. I was quite shocked when on Day Five the focus shifted to the wife and her appearance. Huh? One of Shaunti's key points is that "a man wants to see that his wife cares enough about him to make an effort." Ouchie....all I seemed to be doing was complaining about my flabbiness with no effort to back it up. Not only do I want to be attractive to my husband, but I also need to respect my body according to God's standards.
1 Corinthians 6:19-20, "Don’t you realize that your body is the temple of the Holy Spirit, who lives in you and was given to you by God? You do not belong to yourself, for God bought you with a high price. So you must honor God with your body."
Romans 6:12-13, "Do not let sin control the way you live; do not give in to sinful desires. Do not let any part of your body become an instrument of evil to serve sin. Instead, give yourselves completely to God, for you were dead, but now you have new life. So use your whole body as an instrument to do what is right for the glory of God."
Let's face facts, gluttony or overeating is something that the Church doesn't do a lot of talking about. (Can you imagine the squirming in the pews that would occur?) We hear about the problems of alcohol or drugs, but not necessarily those of food addiction. It comes down to a matter of self-control, which is one way others and yourself can see the Holy Spirit working in your life. Ironically, I think the first step is not only admitting to yourself that you struggle in the area of self-control, but also admitting it to others.
"Hi, my name is Megan and I'm an overeater."
I came clean with my addiction/lack of self-control the other night when my husband and I shared our prayer requests with each other. I also asked the girls in my Bible study for prayer. And while I don't have an accountability partner, I figure letting others know about it will only help me deal with the challenge.
Because I don't fit into the "all or nothing" mentality, I choose to make small, gradual changes instead. I've begun to incorporate more fruit in my diet. I actually adhere to the recommended serving size of a particular snack (so that's 3 tablespoons worth?). I even started keeping a list of "Things I've said 'No' to," like the Krispy Kreme glazed donuts gleaming at me in the staff meeting last week. "No" is a difficult word to say to my "old friends;" but I'm learning that if you never say "no," you'll never be able to say "yes" to a healthier body.