Day 141: The Impossible Life

The other day as I went shopping, I started trying to figure out how long I had been on the covenant in “months”. I write down every day what day I am on but for a non-math person I have to take a moment to divide by 30… and even then I usually abandon that method and just count the months since January 11th when I started.

So by that method I am a little past four months. Cool!

And then it hit me. Had I only done 3 months like I originally planned then I would have been finished with the covenant last month. And I would have missed out on the last month of blessings.

Day 93: Fallen And Forgiven
Day 106: He Is.
Day 117: HE WILL DO THIS!
Day 118: Trippin
Day 132: A Celebration Of Life
Day 136: A Fast Shopping Trip

And looking back at those days I am so glad that I chose to stick to God for a full year. Or I should say that I am so grateful that He called me to stick by Him for a full year.

Honestly it makes me wonder what my life would/could be like if I chose to do this covenant indefinitely. I mean… when I first started I would have thought it was nigh impossible to stay on this covenant for five years, twenty years, the rest of my life… but now I honestly have a lot less respect for the word impossible.

Jesus looked at them intently and said, “Humanly speaking, it is impossible. But with God everything is possible.” Matthew 19:26

Last year at this time I was sifting through my clothes and giving away almost all my size 8s, 10s, and 12s that I had been keeping in hopes that I would some day get skinny again. I was, in essence, giving up.

Last year, I did not really understand that what has happened was actually possible with God. Because, yes humanly speaking, me… being frees from food… it was impossible at that point. There was nothing that was gonna work to that end.

But, now I see… when you have the power of God on your side, and when you allow God to work His Power inside of you… really, really, really… ev.ery.thing. is possible.

It sorta makes me want to, like, take on the world! It makes me realize that this covenant diet is minuscule compared to what He can really do. And yet this covenant diet is the biggest thing that I have ever seen God do in my life.

Looks like I have an impossible life coming my way!

Day 131: We All Need A Job

I love having “nicknames” for my friends that are doing the covenant… ya know, so that I don’t have to worry about them being embarrassed about stories I tell about them, or letting the cat out of the bag if they are “secret-fasting”, or whatever.

You have heard me talk about my friend “Christy” several times… ya know, my spiritual, emotional, and personality clone? Ya know what’s funny… we went to high school together, came up in the same church together, and I remember thinking she was cool and funny but that was sorta… it. For some reason we never really became good friends. Well, after doing a bible study with her at church I very quickly decided she needed to be my friend! (And I think she is one of those “magnetic” type of people that has like 500 people list her as one of their best friends while she would only write down four or five names of her best friends.) But nonetheless, she is certainly on my top 5 list whether I’m on hers or not! Haha!

And I say all of that to give you a little background to understand that I deeply care for my friend Christy… I’m truly elated when she has success, I’m entertained when she has some crazy hilarity in her life, and I am pained when she has sadness or struggle.

And, well, lately she has just had… struggle.

And so, well, lately I have just been pained for her.

So the other day I was praying for her and I got this overwhelming sense of Satan attacking her and then of future blessings for her. Now I know that might seem ridiculous… we all have times in our lives marked out by blessing and times marked out by sadness and struggle. But nonetheless, it was so strong that I stopped chopping the celery I was working on, and I put both hands on the island to rest under the weight of this… this… impression put on me that was nothing short of supernatural.

At this point I’m sure some of you might be wondering why in the world I am telling you all of this. You might be thinking, “Oops, January accidentally put a post up on her covenant blog that was supposed to go somewhere else!” (Now… don’t put that past me… it wouldn’t surprise me as flighty as I can be some times.) But here comes the covenant part!

Ya see, Christy is doing a covenant. And Christy is being attacked. And Satan is trying to bring her down. I told her soon after she started having troubles with being sick, “Oh no- I tell ya what, I shoulda warned everyone… number one guarantee when going on the covenant: Satan WILL attack your health.

And I think that she is a big ol target of Satan’s… cause ya see, Christy is a very vocal woman of God. She loves to talk about God in a real way. In the kind of a way that cuts down to the marrow of your soul and makes you face who Jesus really is. And Christy, during and after this covenant, could do some major damage to Satan’s goals.

So to say that she is having spiritual warfare… honestly, after that wave of Revelation from God… well, I’m afraid calling it “spiritual warfare” doesn’t quite cover what I think is going on.

I think “Christy” is having a Job-attack. (Job as in the guy from the Bible… not the word for occupation.) Has her house fallen in on her entire family? No. Has all of her money and money-making ability been stripped from her? No. Has she been plagued by life-altering illness? Okay, well, yes a little bit of that one.

Here’s why I compare her to Job. I think she is under direct attack by Satan. I don’t think any of his minions are working on her. I think it’s the big dog himself. And he is working in a far more devious way than he did with Job. He is working subtly. quietly. slowly. trying to eat away at her joy. her peace. her love. her resolve.

He is working to make Christy feel… defeated.

And I think there is nothing more devastating to us than feeling defeated. It sucks our life away. It strips us of our joy. our love. our hope. And this just just what Satan was going for when he attacked Job. And I think that’s what he’s going for by attacking Christy.

But here, too, is where I think Christy is like Job. You see, Job, at the core… was stubbornly obedient to God. I’m sure that theologians have come up with a gazillion reasons as to why Job was able to resist cursing God, but ultimately it doesn’t matter: the guy stuck by God. And well, my friend Christy certainly has a bit of a stubborn streak in her as well… and I think it will pay off for her in this: Christy is stubbornly obedient to God. I mean… the girl won’t bend. she won’t break. she is going to obey God.

So… Satan, you might as well give up. Cause you gonna lose this one just like ya lost the one with Job.

And then, God is going to bless Christy. Abundantly.

And so I guess this is a word of encouragement ultimately… for Christy and for anyone else that feels the secret, silent, stealthy, sneaky assault of Satan. But ya gotta have a bit of a Job in ya. A bit of Christy in ya.

Ya gotta be stubborn. Ya gotta wag your finger in Satan’s face and say, “No flippin way. God is mine and I am His. I will follow Him. So, in the name of Jesus Christ… go away.”

Because at the end… Job got to chat with God, and God gave Job a one-on-one lesson in Who He Is. And I love Job’s response:

I had only heard about you before, but now I have seen you with my own eyes. Job 42:5

So here is my prayer for you Christy and for all of your comrades…

God, I pray that Christy would have the same level of integrity that Job had and that you would double her blessings as you did with Job. God, please give her strength to endure Satan’s attacks and to look to You so that she will have the chance to say, I had only heard about you before, but now I have seen you with my own eyes. In The Name of Jesus Christ, Amen.

Day 120: Deserving Donuts

I was thinking a bit more on the topic of “deserving” food after my post yesterday. It is something that I can hear myself saying… to myself… deep in my subconscious. I don’t think that my consciousness would really allow me to say it anymore because, well, I have a different look now on… deserving.

Let me look at what I really deserve…

yeah. nothing.

I’m lucky that God chose to allow me into Heaven, but do I deserve it? Nope.

I’m lucky that God gave me a great husband and two wonderful children, but do I deserve them? Nope.

I’m lucky that God placed me in a beautiful, well-constructed home with fresh running clean water, but do I deserve that? Nope.

Because for every “great” thing I have done, there have been just as many moments of decrepitness in my heart. For every kindness I have shown, I have felt selfish and wronged. For every gentle moment I spend, there as has been rage and envy and jealousy.

So, for every night I have spent up with Saxon that I thought might should have “earned” me a donut as a “prize”… I have kept my husband awake with my snoring, or my tossing and turning, or my sleep talking. Do I deserve to have anything special then? No.

But so often the brownie batter, or cookie dough, or bag of Oreos, or sour cream chocolate covered donuts, or whatever that I would eat… was more pleasurable because I felt like I was “treating” myself to something that I “deserved”. But God is the one that gives us… everything. And not because we deserve it… but for a whole different purpose…

“Therefore, give the people of Israel this message from the Sovereign LORD: I am bringing you back, but not because you deserve it. I am doing it to protect my holy name, on which you brought shame while you were scattered among the nations. Ezekiel 36:22

If God chooses to bless me… it’s not because of ME… it’s because of Him. Which is really kind of cool… that means that it is not about what I do or don’t do… a blessing from Him is to protect his holy name. I actually kind of like that better… takes the pressure off of me!

So, really, whenever I do something I think is “deserving”… then I should remember this about when I will receive what I deserve for the “good” I have done…

For we must all stand before Christ to be judged. We will each receive whatever we deserve for the good or evil we have done in this earthly body. 2 Corinthians 5:10

And really, if I have to choose between receiving a reward now in the form of a donut or in the form of an eternal blessing from GOD ALMIGHTY? Well, then, I’ll just have to pass on those donuts for today.

Day Sixty-Four: Greater Gifts

Today I was thinking of the difference between our countries and those that are in want… in a generality, third-world countries. It seems so odd to me for my major life focus to be unlearning my overeating habits when there are people in other countries that would give anything to have what I typically eat for snacks!

But all the same, it is a problem of the heart for me. And I am reminded of the verse…

Great gifts mean great responsibilities; greater gifts, greater responsibilities! Luke 12:48

I have grown up in America… I have lived a life that is essentially a “greater” gift: salvation at the age of eight, great parents, an awesome brother, and an amazing husband and children, financial security, extravagant shelter, and an abundant food supply.

Therefore, I have greater responsibilities. It is my responsibility to deal with that greater gift the way that God wants me to.

It is my responsibility to become a better disciple of Christ each day.

It is my responsibility to honor my parents, to encourage my brother, to respect my husband, and disciple and train up my children.

It is my responsibility to help maintain our financial state (or at least those parts that I do control).

It is my responsibility to take care of my home so that it will last as long as possible for us.

It is my responsibility to eat wisely and with control.

It is my responsibility… given to me from God.

This puts yet another spin on approaching food with the right attitude. But, I guess I sort of accidentally also came across those other things. It sorta changes the way I will even look at chores and paying the bills and making sure my children are exposed daily to the Law of God and the Grace of Christ.

When I imagine that God has deemed me with these greater gifts… it makes me want to accept those responsibilities with graciousness and thankfulness. And not in hopes that I will receive more simply because I have been a good steward (that is a parable study for another day), but just because I want to honor God through appreciating His gifts by upholding the responsibilities that He has given me.

Wow. Honestly. That is all some kinda heavy stuff. But, hey, I’d rather have some heavy emotional and spiritual stuff and a lot of responsibility than the opposite of that. I’ll take blessings… any day!