Day 449: Blame It On Beth Moore

Beth Moore Patriarchs Best Verses Ever

No sugar for five years.

Really, January? Really???

Hey. That’s what God said… don’t look at ME.

One year is cute… five years is getting wayyyyyyy closer to real sacrifice.

What can I say? Blame it on Beth Moore.

She was the one who wrote The Patriarchs. She was the one that was open and honest on page 62. She was the one that put those three, little, almost insignificant verses in between those little, almost insignificant parenthesis.

You know. The kind of verses that you read at just the right time. when you are in just the right attitude. when you have just the right heart to receive them. The kind of verses that you have read a gazillion times before, but this time… this time you are seeking God so fervently. you want to meet with Him so much. you need a word from Him. a vision. a Hope. And then someone like Beth Moore goes and throws them all together…

I was done for.

Here are the three verse chunks… first I’ll put the plain on scripture and then I’m going to do some verse interrupting because I think it’s just as important to know what was simultaneously going through my mind as I read them.

Give your bodies to God because of all he has done for you. Let them be a living and holy sacrifice—the kind he will find acceptable. This is truly the way to worship him. Don’t copy the behavior and customs of this world, but let God transform you into a new person by changing the way you think. Then you will learn to know God’s will for you, which is good and pleasing and perfect. Romans 12:1-2

 Give your bodies to God {Let go of the need to control this experience with your body… give your body’s control over to Him} because of all he has done for you. Let them be a living and holy sacrifice {Hmmmmm, he’s repeating this whole “give up” mentality} —the kind he will find acceptable. This is truly the way to worship him. Don’t copy the behavior and customs of this world {Like diets, balance, gluttony, doing things my way}, but let God transform you into a new person by changing the way you think. Then {Give up and THEN He’ll show you the way to do it} you will learn to know God’s will for you, which is good and pleasing and perfect {That’s what I want… the PERFECT diet that’s not a diet!}. Romans 12:1-2

Honestly, after these verses, I was already feeling His pull. I knew that I had tried to do it “my way” with the slackened covenant, and I knew that it wasn’t going to work unless I did things His way… which might not look normal to the outside world. But after reading those, I was so terribly curious about the other two verses. I mean, could they say anything more???

We are human, but we don’t wage war as humans do. We use God’s mighty weapons, not worldly weapons, to knock down the strongholds of human reasoning and to destroy false arguments. We destroy every proud obstacle that keeps people from knowing God. We capture their rebellious thoughts and teach them to obey Christ. 2 Corinthians 10:3-5

We are human, but we don’t wage war as humans do. {Oh and this fight with food is a battle, a war!} We use God’s mighty weapons {the Word, faith, truth, His righteousness, prayer}, not worldly weapons {like typical diets}, to knock down the strongholds of human reasoning and to destroy false arguments {My OWN arguments}. We destroy every proud obstacle that keeps people from knowing God. {This obstacle of food drains so much of my thoughts and life that it does keep me from spending that time focused on God, so it must be destroyed! Mwah ha ha ha!} 2 Corinthians 10:3-5

And even though the next verses only called for verse 23, I was struck by a few more verses.

They (the Gentiles) live for lustful pleasure and eagerly practice every kind of impurity. But that isn’t what you learned about Christ. Since you have heard about Jesus and have learned the truth that comes from him, throw off your old sinful nature and your former way of life, which is corrupted by lust and deception. Instead, let the Spirit renew your thoughts and attitudes. Put on your new nature, created to be like God—truly righteous and holy. Ephesians 4:19-24

They (the Gentiles) live for lustful pleasure and eagerly practice every kind of impurity. {I hate to say it, as miserable as I was, I was EAGERLY eating that chocolate.} But that isn’t what you learned about Christ. Since you have heard about Jesus and have learned the truth that comes from him, throw off your old sinful nature and your former way of life, {that. right there. that did me in. throw off your former way of life. stop eating sugar.} which is corrupted by lust and deception. {Yep. Those would be the two words I’d use to describe me with sugar.} Instead, let the Spirit renew your thoughts and attitudes. Put on your new nature, created to be like God—truly righteous and holy. {Let GOD do this. Go back to the new you that God formed you into.} Ephesians 4:19-24

And well, yeah… I can’t really blame Beth Moore. God put those verses there. For me. For that moment. And, truth be told, I was really far behind in my study, but now I’m actually glad… I needed those verses at just that moment. He really does work all things together for the good of those who love Him and are called according to his purpose!!! (Romans 8:28)

So, there ya have it. That’s partially how I came to the conclusion to go back to a sugarless life that I referred to on Day 444.

Oh, and next time I’ll talk about how God told me to give up something else for those five years. It’s almost as shocking as me giving up chocolate!

Day 319: Half-Car Garage

A couple of days ago my husband and I set out to clean the garage. My mom offered to watch the boys all day (thanks to my request on Day 303: Zero Car Garage!) so that we could really “git ‘er done” as we like to say here in Texas.

And look at me here… so optimistic.

20121120-212402.jpg

We got a goin’ right after I got back from dropping the boys off around 9:30. And we sorted and cleaned and purged. And sorted some more and cleaned some more and purged some more. I just knew we were gonna get that garage in ship-shape condition.

We ran a trip to Goodwill, then to the ReStore (a Habitat for Humanity resale store), and got some lunch. And when we got back and I saw the mounds that were yet to be touched, I started to feel a little doubt creeping in that it might not be possible to clean out an entire garage in 8 hours. A garage, mind you, that had not been sorted, cleaned, or purged in about 5 years.

But I was just so determined to finish that I plugged on ahead. I only had a limited amount of time to finish… so it simply HAD to get done.

No excuses. Play like a champion.

… … …

Yeah. We didn’t get it done.

And I was really pretty disappointed. As I hooked back in the kids’ car seats to go pick them up, my husband kept trying to remind me that we had done A LOT. And he was right. He was. But, it wasn’t DONE.

And I drove off feeling semi-accomplished and semi-failure.

{And how does this relate to the covenant???}

Oh yes. Well, as I drove off I was like, “Why am I disappointed? We did so much work! …… But we didn’t finish. And I really thought we’d finish. I dunno maybe cleaning out the garage in one day was an unrealistic expectation.”

Bam.

That was it. Unrealistic expectation. And I immediately started thinking about a mental conversation I’d had with myself earlier that day about how I was a little bummed that I was going to have to keep in the covenant for another year. I’d sorta started feeling like within this year I should have been all healed of my obsession, a size six, have my blog written into a book, and all of that with a nice little bow on top.

But. It was an unrealistic expectation.

Or maybe it’s more so that it was a undivine expectation instead of looking for God’s divine timing.

Cause again and again I am reminded…

    “For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways,” declares the Lord . “As the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts than your thoughts.

Isaiah 55:8-9

And I also came across this verse:

    This vision is for a future time. It describes the end, and it will be fulfilled. If it seems slow in coming, wait patiently, for it will surely take place. It will not be delayed. “Look at the proud! They trust in themselves, and their lives are crooked. But the righteous will live by their faithfulness to God.

Habbakuk 2:3-4

I added in verse 4 as well… because it is like the opposite of waiting patiently. Trusting in myself… had all of those things happened in MY timing, I might have trusted in myself. I might have thought that I was the one that made it all happen. Even if it was just a tiny seed in my heart… we all know how dangerous a tiny seed can be.

So, now I’m glad that my covenant has not reached its fulfillment yet. I’m glad to have a chance to be a righteous one and live by faithfulness to God.

But the garage… well, I wish that HAD been finished in MY timing. Haha!

Day 305: God Vision Goggles

I was thinking about yesterday’s post and as I tried to embrace the verseGod doesn’t see things the way you see them” I had this moment where it moved away from being all about my fauxfat and more about food…

Like, I was hungry this morning and was looking through my pantry for something and thought, “Oooooo, look… chips… yummay!” And then I thought to myself: Okay, this is when I need to come up with a verse to help me… and the verse that I focused on yesterday was God doesn’t see things the way you see them, but that doesn’t really apply to food… that was about appearance. But, well, really God probably doesn’t look at these chips the same way that I look at them. And God probably doesn’t look at a banana the same way that I look at it.

And then I really started to think about looking at my food options the way God might see them. I mean, remember Luke 16:15? “The things that most people think are important are worthless as far as God is concerned.” Like, I see Nacho Cheese Doritos and think “yummmmm” and He probably sees them as black gunk and tar. I see a bag of my mom’s famous chocolate chip chunk cookies and think “delishhhhhhh” and He… well, actually, bad example. I’m pretty sure even GOD knows how amazing those things are. So, let me try something else… I see an ad for a supreme chaulpa from Taco Bell and think “soooooooooo goooooooood” and he thinks “gonna suck your life away”.

And on the flip side, I see a banana and think… “{insert sarcastic tone} wow. a banana. that’s just so… healthy. woo hoo.” And He sees His creation, His gift of easier days for me physically, His blessing of a longer life.

(Okay, yes, this is me being heinously overdramatic… but go with it), what if God looks at the world and everything in it, like, in infrared like that picture of my fridge up there??? And all of the things going on that are pleasing to Him are in red and all of the stuff that is temporary and just eternally lame is in that green and blue color??? Wouldn’t that be RAD to be able to see the world that way!?!? To see the world His way?!?!

Cause here’s the deal… I spend so many of my days looking at the world and longing for those areas that are green and blue… areas of life that separate me from Him. Food. Popularity. Gossip. Fashion. Entertainment. Etc.

But His thoughts are not my thoughts… His ways are not like my ways. (Isaiah 55:8)

So, this week one of the things I’m going to do is to put on my God Vision Goggles and try to seek out those eternal things that are glowing red hot with holiness. I’m going to look at my fridge and pantry with that vision and I’m going to reach out for those things that please Him. I’m going to look around at the people I see, and do as Jesus would do… I’m going to aim for those people that are blue and green on that infrared scan and I’m gonna let the blinding red of Jesus’s life and goodness shine through me… and maybe they’ll want to join in with the red crew.

And maybe, after I’ve worn those God Vision Goggles for a while… maybe they’ll just become, like, part of me. And maybe I’ll start to see like that all the time. And maybe I’ll love God all the more for the way He sees this world.

Hmmmmmm, probably not “maybe” on that last one… pretty sure that one will be a “definitely”.

Day 111: Patiently Persist

I think maybe I’ve gotten in a bit of a rush lately with my covenant. I know that might seem a bit weird to say considering that nothing I do will speed up the time for me. I mean, the end of the year won’t come any faster or slower and I’m not stopping my covenant before the end of the year.

But what I mean is that I’m in a rush for more “results”. And I don’t just mean outward results like losing more weight but also inward results like resisting tortillas and whatnot.

Part of the reason that I signed on for a year of this is because I know, based on some other times in my life that God has worked and molded me into a new person, that sometimes being completely renewed is a long process. Or at least it can be longer than I want it to be sometimes. I know that He can perform a change in me overnight but I also know that sometimes I resist his changes and renewals. Sometimes subconsciously resisting and sometimes quite consciously.

But recently in my bible reading I came across this verse and the message really told me to slow. down.

“And the seeds that fell on the good soil represent honest, good-hearted people who hear God’s word, cling to it, and patiently produce a huge harvest.” Luke 8:15 NLT

And here is another version of the same verse…

The seeds that fell in good soil stand for those who hear the message and retain it in a good and obedient heart, and they persist until they bear fruit. Luke 8:15 GNT

I just really like both of those versions… and I loved both the words patiently and persist. They remind me again that God’s ways are not necessarily my ways. Or, in another light, God’s timing is not necessarily my timing.

But I am to patiently persist until I produce a fruit… a harvest.

So. realllly, putting a time limit of a year isn’t even right. I’m to do this covenant until I produce fruit to harvest.

That’s gonna take some patience! Haha!