Day 657: I Quit.

i quit

Yep.

That’s it.

I’m done.

Out.

No more.

I quit.

… … …

Seriously.

I’m not joking.

… … …

You see, for months I’ve been just downright struggling with this whole experience. I’ve put on a whole pant size for sure (and yet you can be darned sure that I’m still squeezing my size ten rear into my size eight jeans because I don’t want to go buy a bigger size… because I WON’T go buy a bigger size) and I’m just so weighed down and shackled to food again it’s become nigh unbearable.

I can’t make it through a Sunday School lesson without breaking down in tears.

I’ve cried to my husband multiple times.

I seriously, seriously, seriously was considering calling my church to see if they would work out some kind of deal for me to get counseling up there.

Things in my soul have been a total and complete roller coaster.

I mean, every few days I would find a new “resolve” and would have faith in myself again that I could do this and then day three or four would hit and well, all it takes for me is that one bite of chocolate…and well, it would all go downhill from there.

And so this past week, I’ve just really had to face up to what is going on here…

I can’t do this anymore.

So, I’m going to quit.

Okay, but I’ll end the suspense.

I’m not quitting The Covenant Diet… I can’t quit it. God has brought me so far and I know… I KNOW… that He is faithful. I’ve read too many accounts in the Bible where He brought people through terrible, terrible adversity to reveal His Glory OR to make them face up to the fact that He really IS in control.

And here’s the deal: He has shown me over and Over and OVER and OVER and OVER again what I need to do. Like I said on Day 653: Just Like Jonah, I just keep running from it. But in my heart for months He has been telling me through friends, through the wisdom in his Word, through Sunday School, through prayer… He has been saying that I have GOT to make this sugar thing a total and complete lifestyle change.

As in… never again.

As in… quit.

Quit.

Quit eating sugar.

For.ev.er.

… … …

I know, right?!?!?

… … …

For.ev.er.

… … …

That’s nuts!

Wellllll, yeah, but so was giving up sugar for a year. But it was one of the best years of my life. Total and complete freedom.

So, this post could go on and on today… and I’ll explain more about how I came to this point in the following days’ posts… but here’s the deal.

I’ve been running from God.

Just like Jonah.

And I’m tired.

I’m tired of running.

I’m tired of trying to do this battle with food my way.

I’m tired.

And I’m failing at doing it my way.

I’m tired of failing.

So, I’m looking at this raging sea in my soul and I know that it’s raging because of me.

Because of my decision to go my own way.

And I’m done.

I’m just ready to quit.

So, this morning, I took one last sigh.

{Sigh}

Stood up and walked to the edge of this boat in this raging sea.

And I dove in.

I dove into the waters of His grace and mercy.

I dove into the waters of self “sacrifice”.

I dove into the waters of freedom.

I dove into the waters that will guide me back to where I need to be.

Will it be easy to give up sugar for.ev.er.???

Heck to tha NO.

It sure as heck wasn’t easy for Jonah to live in a whale’s stomach either.

But it got him back to where he needed to be.

And that was where God wanted him to be.

And as I tread water in this sea that is my soul, I realize that as soon as I jumped in… it was immediately calm. Refreshing even. Going His way instantly brings me more peace than I had during any of the days of trying to do it on my own.

The peace I have felt just in this one day… well, it just makes me so glad that I finally… finally…

quit.

i quit SUGAR

Day 445: When It Rains, It Pours… Literally.

As in, it’s 2:24am as I start this post and I’ve already been up for about thirty minutes because it is POURING at our house.

With full-boar lightning, the kind of thunder that makes things rattle in the house, and overflowing gutters all around.

Oh, and shall I include a nightmaring toddler?

Not that I can blame him… creation is LOUD tonight.

So, what does a girl like me do at 2am when she can’t sleep cause of the rain?

She blogs.

And reads the bible.

Well, honestly, first I opened up Twitter… not because I was checking anything for my Twitter feed, but because I follow Jesus Calling on there and sometimes they just have one little tweet that rocks my world. I think I was hoping that they would make it easy on me. And after scrolling through the last week or so of their tweets, I was like “Ummmm, I’m in the wrong place” and so I hoped over to YouVersion to see what God had to say.

I sorta stared at that screen for a minute, like, “Uhhhhhh… what should I read?” So I clicked on my bookmarks and skimmed through those. And then, I thought “Well, why am I up in the first place? Rain. I’ll search for verses that have the word rain in them.”

And I saw this one in the book of Joel.

Rejoice, you people of Jerusalem! Rejoice in the Lord your God! For the rain he sends demonstrates his faithfulness. Once more the autumn rains will come, as well as the rains of spring. Joel 2:23

And that part “The rain he sends demonstrates his faithfulness” sorta grabbed my attention, so I thought… “Hmmmm, I’ll read some of Joel. Cause I mean… who reads Joel?!?!? I don’t even REMEMBER the last time I read the book of Joel. Not sure I even remembered that it was a book of the bible.”

And then I changed my readers version to The Message… cause, I mean, come on. It IS 2am.

And then I was reminded why people probably don’t hit up Joel very often… from the onset you get verses like these:

Get in touch with reality—and weep! Joel 1:5

Joy is dried up and withered in the hearts of the people. Joel 1:12

A black day! A Doomsday! Clouds with no silver lining! Joel 2:2

Yikes… who wants THAT story??? But, just like God’s grace, the story turns…

But there’s also this, it’s not too late— God’s personal Message!— “Come back to me and really mean it! Come fasting and weeping, sorry for your sins!”Change your life, not just your clothes. Come back to God, your God. And here’s why: God is kind and merciful. He takes a deep breath, puts up with a lot, This most patient God, extravagant in love, always ready to cancel catastrophe. Who knows? Maybe he’ll do it now, maybe he’ll turn around and show pity. Maybe, when all’s said and done, there’ll be blessings full and robust for your God! Joel 2:12-14

I mean, that was good, don’t get me wrong. But then, there it was… the reason God sent me to Joel. And let’s just say that the “locust” in my life was gluttony.

I’ll make up for the years of the locust, the great locust devastation— Locusts savage, locusts deadly, fierce locusts, locusts of doom, That great locust invasion I sent your way. You’ll eat your fill of good food. You’ll be full of praises to your God, The God who has set you back on your heels in wonder. Joel 2:25-27

And it just reminded me… God will… wait, no… God IS making up for the years of slavery that I spent to gluttony. And now, I’m eating my fill of GOOD food. I’m full of praises to Him. He is my God, who has set me back on my heels in wonder.

So, like the rainbow was in the days of Noah, rain will be for me. I will remember that like he said in verse 23, “Rain demonstrates His Faithfulness.

Thank you rain, for waking me up.
Thank you toddler, for getting me up.
Thank you Joel, for reminding me.

Thank you God, for saving me.

Day 410: Overlooking Neglect

On Day 406 I wrote about our blow up pool. Hmmmm, never thought that I’d write about a blow up pool on my blog about covenants and dieting. Ha!

Anyway, that morning before the post went “live”, I was doing my hair and I was wondering what caused the hole to get into the little rainforesty part of the pool (which has since been cut off of the pool cause it got a little too bothersome). I guess it could have been one of the boys jumping on it. Or maybe driving a Hot Wheel across it. Or maybe it was when I was dragging it out of the little shed. Perhaps it was when we left it out back, empty of water, during a huge wind storm and watched it as it flew back and forth through our backyard like a pinball (that was actually kind of fun to watch).

Not sure what did caused the hole, but I do know this. Whatever did it was a result of neglect.

The word neglect immediately makes me think of sad-faced puppies on TV with Sarah McLachlan’s voice hovering around us.

sarah mclachlan dogs 2

But I’m not talking about that level of neglect. I’m talking about a far more dangerous level of neglect: the kind you don’t even realize is happening.

Okay, yes, so watching the pool bounce around the backyard was an obvious neglect.

But a lot of the other things… the basic “use” of the pool… didn’t seem like neglect. When it boils down to it, I didn’t take super awesome good amazing care of the pool, and it got a hole in it.

As I thought through this while I globbed gel on another section of my hair, I was like, “Oh, well, I won’t put this little thought process in my “Patched Up” post because it’s not like me neglecting my pool relates to me and my faith. I mean… it’s not like my faith was struggling because of neglect.”

{Picture me sorta freezing my hands mid curl-twirl as a wave of Holy Spirit goose bumps slid over me while I realized how wrong I was about what I had just said to myself.}

Honestly, that is exactly what had caused my faith to just sorta want to puff out slowly through a little hole. I neglected it. I mean, I went to church for women’s bible study, and I went to Sunday School, and I taught lessons in the youth department, but I was neglecting my own personal study, meditation, and prayer at home. I was neglecting God.

You neglected the Rock who had fathered you; you forgot the God who had given you birth. Deuteronomy 32:18

It was parental neglect… only I was the one neglecting… I neglected My Parent. My Father. My Rock. My Maker. And I had been overlooking it for so. very. long.

Sure, I had little verses here and there, but I was not taking much time for Him. I was too busy. too tired. too busy. too tired. And that led to me being too unmotivated. You know how it is, you skip a day, then another, and then another, and then, well, you’re just so behind… why keep it up? Take a few more days off while you’re at it.

And as much as I hate to say it… I know exactly what happened.

  1. I became a vegetarian after being a meat eater for 33 years, and my vitamin B12 levels got realllllly low (although I didn’t know it at the time).
  2. When my vitamin B12 levels got low, I got realllllllly tired.
  3. When I got reallllllly tired, I didn’t want to wake up early in the morning.
  4. When I didn’t want to wake up early in the morning, then I missed the chance to read or pray in peace and quiet before my sons got up and demanded all my attention.
  5. When I missed the chance to read or pray in peace and quiet before my sons got up, then I never got another chance until bedtime.
  6. When I didn’t get a chance until bedtime to read and pray, then I would fall asleep on my bible because my vitamin B12 levels were low.
  7. Rinse, and repeat.

So, like I said on Day 406, I was still getting in little snippits of God, but I wasn’t following the example of Christ and going up on the mountain away from everyone else to take an extended amount of time to focus on My Lord and what He wanted to say to me.

Essentially, if we jump back to the pool = faith analogy, and my pool got a hole in it that needed a patch = my faith got a hole in it that needed a patch. So, God = the patch for my faith. And before going to God, I kept having to blow up that dadgum faith pool because the patch wasn’t sticking. Well, it’s just like any patch… you have to give it enough TIME to stick. If you fill the pool back up with water before the patch is ready then it’ll just float on off.

And that’s what I have been doing for months. Going to God for only a few moments a day when I need to be going away to find Him and seek Him and allow Him plenty of time to apply a patch to my ever deflating faith, so that He could breathe in His Spirit. But now I know how to keep my faith aired up. Not that I won’t do the exact same thing again, but I can alsways remember…

The Lord is faithful; he will strengthen you and guard you from the evil one. 2 Thessalonians 3:3