About You

You are LOVED by God. There is nothing you can do, or can't do to make him love you more or less. He loves you because he loves you. Because you are His child.

YOU ARE~
Redeemed
Worthy
More then your past
Forgiven
Whole
Enough
Worth it
A treasure
Righteous
Free
Accepted
You matter.


Monday, November 24, 2008

God is showing himself.......... :)

First of all this morning I have to say "Wow!" I came downstairs and looked out the window and saw a nice blanket of snow on the ground and my bushes and trees look beautiful with a covering of snow! It is still snowing and looks so pretty coming down. Don't get me wrong, I am NOT by any means a winter girl. I don't like the cold at all. If I could stay inside all winter and never come out I probably would. I'm a huge baby in the cold and I would rather spend a day in 90 degrees. However, I do love to see the snow and watch it fall.
So I've been wanting to write about how Christ has been so blatantly showing himself in my life lately and it's really putting me on a "God high" I like to write about these things so I don't forget them in the future when I'm not feeling quite so close to him, or seeing him in my life.
It's hard to be really open on my blog sometimes knowing that I share it with other people, it's even hard to figure out how to write things so someone else will understand it, but I have to try to remember that is not why I started this blog. I started it to write down things I wanted to remember about my days as a mother, funny things my kids do, and my life in general, for me. I just chose to share it also! I will try to do a better job for myself and family of being candid and not worry so much about what other people think, after all, I am not perfect!
I think ever since I was a kid I have loved to eat and have had a slight weight issue on and off. I have been "dieting" through my 38 years, I lose weight then gain it back again. I can do good for as long as 9 months and then just go right back to the way I was. I just got done w/this cycle again. I exercised and ate well for 8 months, then in about June I hurt myself running and just quit exercising and starting eating bad again. Well, in the past 3 weeks or so, God has kinda been convicting me, but in his subtle ways as usual. ( I always tell him he needs to be more of a slap in the face for me to get it right away, but he's a loving God, :) ) So, after hearing that voice a few too many times I realized, I am being a glutton again, and I have an addiction to food. It's NOT normal to be eating popcorn and be thinking about what I can eat when I'm done with it. So I was thinking to myself, what do I do?? Do I go back to weight watchers again? Do I do some other diet that I've done before and failed? Do I go back to the Y and exercise 6 days a week again? OA? Where do I find someone who will understand what is wrong with me and be able to help me? I felt frustrated. Then I think it was 2 or 3 days later, I went to middle school ministry on Wed night and one of the other ladies that I just started to get to know better was saying how she was trying to eat right. Well the more we emailed each other after that night, we figured out we have the same problem. A food addiction. That is not a coincidence to me. God brought us together for a reason. So here God is showing himself in my life, how close he is to my thoughts. I'm already praising him, thanks God for sending her! How wonderful! Then Sunday comes, I am walking out the door at church, and one of the ladies at church says "Hi Amy! How are you?" and I say "Good, how are you?" As I'm walking in the parking lot, I'm thinking of the song by Casting Crowns called Stained Glass Masquerade.......here's the lyrics....


"Stained Glass Masquerade"

Is there anyone that fails Is there anyone that falls Am I the only one in church today feelin' so small Cause when I take a look around Everybody seems so strong I know they'll soon discoverThat I don't belongSo I tuck it all away, like everything's okayIf I make them all believe it, maybe I'll believe it tooSo with a painted grin, I play the part againSo everyone will see me the way that I see them Are we happy plastic peopleUnder shiny plastic steeplesWith walls around our weaknessAnd smiles to hide our painBut if the invitation's openTo every heart that has been brokenMaybe then we close the curtainOn our stained glass masqueradeIs there anyone who's been thereAre there any hands to raiseAm I the only one who's tradedIn the altar for a stageThe performance is convincingAnd we know every line by heartOnly when no one is watchingCan we really fall apartBut would it set me freeIf I dared to let you seeThe truth behind the personThat you imagine me to beWould your arms be openOr would you walk awayWould the love of JesusBe enough to make you stay


Referring to how we smile at church and act like everything is great but it's not. We are hiding behind some mask. Well that's what I felt like when I was walking to my van. Oh sure, I'm great! But did she really want to hear my story walking out of church? I'm sure not!
Well, this women happens to be someone that has had struggles in the past with eating. She is also someone that has helped me w/it in the past. Think she was put in that doorway by coincidence? I think not! God again. So after seeing her, it finally hit me a day later to email her and ask her to do a study with me again because I can't do this eating thing without God. She wrote back and said what you ask? That after seeing me, God laid it on her heart to pray for me! How amazing is that?? When I read her email, I thought, Wow God you are really something. Not that I'm surprised, but amazed at him and thankful is more like it.
Then I pick up the magazine from middle school ministry table this wed and Thursday I started reading it. What is it about? How close God is to us. lol. I had to laugh! Is he trying to tell me something? He's here. He's with me and he's going to help me. Thanks Lord. I so appreciate you showing me how close you are to me and that you care about everything in my life. It's not that I didn't KNOW this. I ask him for little things all the time, like when I'm in the shower in the morning to please keep my kids asleep so I can have some time to myself in the morning to have a cup of coffee in peace. Selfish I know, but a lot of days, he answers that prayer. Or giving me close parking spots when the kids are with me and it's raining? He hears my "little" things and a lot of time answers. He's so wonderful and it's when he's so close like this I that It makes me love him. I used to wonder, how do people say they "love" God? How do they fall in love with him. I know how now. He loves me. That was proven at the cross, but in the daily things, he shows me. I think sometimes you have to be looking for him or you won't see how involved he really is in your life.
Another thing that is that on Wed nights Josh has been talking about serving a lot. Of course I have heard the story about Jesus washing his disciples feet before, and I've heard that he wants us to serve, but what I didn't get was that serving is also something we do to be obedient to God. Why do I want to be obedient to God? Because I love him. So when I heard that I think there was a click in my head. Oh! I need to eat well to be obedient to him! I need to serve at home and not complain to be obedient. Hmmmmmmmm. Not saying that's easy, but it makes more sense to me now. Why I didn't get this years ago I don't know, but I guess we learn everything when we are supposed to. So now when I'm grumbling at home about the pile of laundry or the messy house I try to tell myself, "Amy, you are here to serve and right now my job is to serve my husband and four kids. Now just because I had this realization that doesn't mean it's going to be a piece of cake but it does make doing things a tad easier when I think about doing it for the Lord.

I'm quite sure that I was brought to the middle school ministry for many reason! Not only to serve the middle school kids. :)

2 comments:

Debbie said...

Hi Amy,
I totally get what you are saying. Sometimes it's hard to see God all the time in the up close. Other days it's like every word and thought point directly to Him. That Casting Crowns song is one of my favorites as well. When I start wishing my life is like someone else's, I remember that song. Who knows, maybe some people think I have it all together. LOL.
It's good to get to know you.
Debbie

Dawn Ward said...

Amy,

Hi. This is my first time visiting your blog. I was reading a couple of posts and when I got to this one, I just had to respond. I, too, am a food addict.

I have struggled with the issue of food and weight my entire life.

I crash dieted my way through high school at a time when I thought a size 5/6 was fat b/c my friends didn't have curves and I did. Oh what I wouldn't give for a 5/6 body now! Oh well! Anyway...

When I was 20, I went through something very traumatic and put on A LOT of weight very quickly. I have always turned to food for comfort. I gained about 40 pounds in less than two years, and gradually continued to put on another 20 over the course of the next 5-7 years. At my heaviest, I weighed 208 on a 5'2" frame.

I tried so many different things. I would lose some weight only to quit and put it back on. I tried exercising. I was at my wit's end. I cried out to God. I told Him I didn't want to be this way, and I needed His help. I knew I couldn't do it by myself, but nothing worked.

It was so bad that there were times when I would stand in the kitchen and eat something and then hide the wrapper in the trash can so my husband wouldn't see it! I hated myself for eating, and then because of the guilt and anguish I felt, I would then eat some more! What a vicious cycle! I was filled with such self-loathing.

Finally, about 5 years ago, I was crying out to God again about the weight situation and in my prayer time with Him, He spoke to my heart about my addiction for the first time.

At that point, we had worked through a lot of other issues, and I guess maybe I was finally ready to hear it and take action.

God told me I had an addiction to food, and that I needed to repent of it and ask His forgiveness. He would then be free to help me.

I cannot tell you how freeing that was! For the first time EVER, I felt hopeful about my weight loss efforts.

Since that time, I have lost weight in stages. First, I lost about 25 pounds. I then got tired of trying but was able to maintain the weight I had lost. After a couple of years, I slowly started to creep back up and knew that was not the direction I wanted to go. I renewed my efforts and was able to lose another 25 pounds. I have gained about 10 back from the lowest weight I had reached, but I have maintined for over a year at that weight and just continue to try to do the best I can.

As is evidenced by the last paragraph, I can't tell you that my food and weight issues were solved by repenting of my addiction. To be honest, I think it's like an alcoholic. Although I haven't been one myself, I hear that once you get sober, if you want to stay that way, you can't ever touch a drink again.

Obviously, we can't do that with food. I think most likely I will always struggle in this area. I know God could heal me of it completely if He chose to do so, but it certainly does keep me dependent on Him for help. I know I truly cannot do it alone, but I am trying to trust in Phil. 4:13 and really believe that I CAN do all things through Christ who gives me strength. The key is that I have to keep asking and knowing that my efforts on my own are in vain.

One thing that I did to help me not feel overwhelmed by how much weight I needed to lose (and I'm not saying you have a lot to lose..I don't know) was to focus on the middle digit changing, which was basically 10 pounds at the time. I would just set a goal of seeing the middle number change, and I was able to feel like I had experienced a major accomplishment much more frequently. Not that any weight loss isn't an accomplishment, but I'm sure you know what I mean.

I wish you much success in this journey. It sounds like you have made a good start and God is definitely in your situation. Keep doing as you are doing, and you will find success.

Just remember to measure the success by God's standards and not the world's. You are beautiful in His sight, and He loves you. Psalm 45:11, "The King is enthralled by your beauty." What a wonderful thought.

Blessings,
Dawn