Day 220: It’s Whatev

Day 17 of my hard-core Daniel Fast.

So a covenant companion of mine has reworked her covenant terms and it’s essentially opposite of what I am doing and I am totally okay with it!

She is a type I diabetic and so, naturally, she’s “allowed” to make her own rules! But she texted me the other day excited about her new covenant “terms” and told me that she is doing a low-carb, high protein diet and that she has been having perfect sugars with it!

My response: awesome!

Cause it’s not about making the foods the thing that rules in our hearts but it is about relying upon God to sustain. to fulfill. to redeem.

And then I came across this verse and it totally made me think of her…

    I want you to do whatever will help you serve the Lord best, with as few distractions as possible. 1 Corinthians 7:35

So I mean, whatever you want to covenant… pray to Jesus about it and if you see a green light from Him then go for it!

Day 134: Back To School

I’m just gonna say it… I have been realllllly wanting to weigh myself the past few days.

I know… I know… I KNOW! It’s so utterly ridiculous that I should want to! I mean… when I really sit down and write that down it forces me to remember not so long ago when I was so beat down by the scale that my husband and I straight up threw. it. away.

Yesterday I was even trying to convince myself that it would be okay to weigh, like, just once because I never really explicitly said that I was going to add not-weighing to the covenant… you know, that I wouldn’t weigh for the rest of the year. My mind was like, “Oh you know, you just said you wanted to just not weigh all the time. You never really said ‘I’m covenanting with God to not weigh.’”

Sooooo, to make it clear to myself that there is no room for negotiation here…

God. I covenant with You to not weigh myself for the rest of the year. If I go to the doctor, I will request that they not tell me my weight. And while I’m at it God… thank you for keeping me from weighing myself the past couple of days when I was really tempted to do so. And thank you even more for helping me to see what a detriment weighing has been for me through this process and for freeing me from the “measurement” of the world, so that I can focus on your measurement of me.

Alright. There ya have it. Sealed the deal.

And here’s the cool part… I think that I have wanted to weigh because my size 12s have been… just sorta loose lately. Like, my Old Navy jeans that were my “skinny-girl jeans” are now having to be rolled on top (I sorta have this passionate dislike for belts) to keep them on me. So, I thought… “I bet that I have lost a little more weight! Oh I wish that I could know for sure… just one little weigh-in and that would be it!” Again, thank God that He kept me from it… what if I had actually gained according to the scale? The emotional fall out from that would have not been good, I’m sure.

But after deciding that this post was going to be about be explicit with God about adding the no-weigh to my covenant agreement, I thought… ya know, I do have one dress that is a size 10. I guess I could try that on to see.

It is my college graduation dress… and it’s just so classy and kind of timeless (I think… I have noooooooo clue about fashion), and the cut of it was pretty flattering for me.

And it fit!!!!

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I mean… sure it fit better in college when I was a “big 8/little 10″ instead of a “big 10/little 12″ but that’s not the point. It fit. Now why going through that process doesn’t emotionally bother me while weighing myself can send me spiraling into an abyss of depression… I. don’t. know. (Although I do think that the same process of trying on clothes in the store might not be as “emotionally easy”… even when I was skinny that process would sort of get me “down” since I don’t have a toothpick figure even when I am a size 8, but a lot of “trendy” clothes are aimed at toothpicks.)

But I do know that if trying on clothes in my closet to see if they fit ever does make me depressed then I’ll slap that on the covenant as well! I’d much rather be a happy and content person that finds my identity in Christ than a person who knows if she wears a 10 or a 12.

All the same… it sure was nice to fit into that dress. Even if just for nostalgia cause I have no idea when I will ever actually wear that dress! But it sorta… ya know… took me back to that day in school… or well, the end of the school for me. When Hope was capitalized in my soul. When Dreams were still possible. When nothing from the world could weigh me down.

And after I had taken the dress off (which, I got a little worried that I might have to go and pick my son up in the dress because it has that kind of fabric and one of those “hidden” zippers that get trapped in between seams and I was getting afraid that I would not be able to get it off!) and I had quickly put back on my t-shirt and Nike shorts (and I say quickly because the mowers came right to mow right as I was changing and even though they don’t ever peek it made me feel oogie)… I looked at myself in the mirror, and I smiled. Because at that moment…

Hope was capitalized in my soul.
My Dreams suddenly seemed all too possible.
And nothing in the world could weigh me down.

Day 130: Nit Gonna Get Me Down

Over the past day my oldest has been scratching his head a lot. I thought it was because of a recent change in shampoo and decided to give both he and his brother a good ol Head N Shoulders washing.

And then I went to check the scalp on my youngest to make sure it was squeaky clean and noticed these itty bitty brown dots on his scalp.

My stomach flip flopped. Oh please Lord, let that be something he got caught in his hair playing outside and not lice.

Apparently though you have to pray that prayer way before they even get it. Haha! Cause lice they were… well, a bunch of those little nits that turn into lice. So I sent my husband out to the pharmacy to pick up that RID stuff (which, for the record, smells exactly the same as it did when I had lice in fourth grade).

I looked through the hair on my oldest and he looked clean but I decided to treat him anyway. Good thing- he had more than his brother.

All of that to say, after four hours of scrubbing, rinsing, gelling, picking, combing, gelling again, picking again, and combing again, then washing again… both of my boys were deloused.

And I don’t know if you have seen a pic of my curly fro, but getting lice would be catastrophic for me, so I thought y’all would get a kick out of how I attempted to “protect” my scalp while I was working away on the boys and their little friends…

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Now. That is gross information for someone getting on this blog… haha, maybe it will keep you from wanting to eat though for a bit!!!

But I bring it up to say that delousing a toddler and a four year old is a rather stressful event… especially since you have to do it well or else you’ll just be in the same boat again the next week. There I was delousing and feeling all sorts of tense and then I had a cool moment… I realized that I had not even thought of chocolate. or sugar. or bread. okay, I did think about eating a saltine.

A saltine?

Yes. A saltine.

Why would you be tempted to eat a saltine???

My toddler loves them and he was snacking on them while I picked at his head like momma orangutang. And when I passed the little stack of them I was about .5 seconds away from popping one on in my gullet.

Annnnnnnd ya know what stopped me? The covenant.

I am so glad that I “upgraded” the covenant to include cutting out bread and chips… and yeah I know a cracker isn’t a chip, but yeah… it might as well be. As I reached out to snag one, my brain said, “Hey Jan… covenant. Upgraded covenant. No chips.” And I put it back and that was that. I returned to my ever glamorous life of delousing children.

And I know that I have mentioned this verse a lot lately, but I just have to bring it up again. I think maybe God is in the process of writing it on my heart. deeeeeeeeep on my heart. Haha!

O Lord, God of Israel, there is no God like you in all of heaven and earth. You keep your covenant and show unfailing love to all who walk before you in wholehearted devotion. 2 Chronicles 6:14

But also this one… I had to have strength to resist the saltine (haha- that even sounds funny to me, but, eh, such is an addiction to food. All of it qualifies)! And that strength comes from God- and out of my love for God.

And now that I look at this one, I’m liking it just as much as the previous verse:

Now all glory to God, who is able to make you strong. Romans 16:25

Cause that’s where it comes from! My strength comes from God. There is no other way to explain it.

Yep. Even that saltine. those dad gum lice. that bully Satan. They’re “nit” gonna get me down. Haha! Gotta love the malapropisms!!!

Day 113: Why Be You, When You Can Be New

So, my youngest son lovvvvvvves the movie Robots.

Okay, I’ll admit it. I love it too! My husband is an inventor and an out-of-the-box kind of guy and so any story along those lines just totally matches up with our family!

Well, aside from the many inspiring parts of the movie, there is one scene in particular that caught my attention today when the movie was playing in the background.

Essentially, the old-school boss of the corporation (Bigweld) has been booted to the side and the fancy-pants money-making robot (Ratchet) has taken his place. Ratchet has decided that it is time to stop making spare parts for the robots forcing them to “upgrade” into expensive shiny new parts.

And it was his sales pitch that got my attention…

What’s our big ticket item?
(“Eye Of The Tiger” plays while images of sleek, sexy robots appear on a screen all the robots are watching)
Upgrades, people, upgrades. That’s how we make the dough. Now if we’re telling robots that no matter what they’re made of they’re “fine”, how can we expect them to feel crummy enough about themselves to buy our upgrades and make themselves look better? Therefore, I’ve come up with a new slogan: “Why be you, when you can be new?”

Originally I started to think about how this is such a parallel to our society. We are pushed by marketing into that mentality of “feeling crummy enough about ourselves to buy upgrades”… upgrades being, like, a zillion things… wrinkle cream, makeup, expensive hair gel (can you tell that’s a personal issue of mine- haha), hair extensions, nails, tanning, containers of SlimFast, subscriptions to Jenny Craig and Weight Watchers, gym memberships, personal trainers, laser hair removal, contacts, tats, earrings, jewelry, clothes, shoes, purses, lasik, hair dye, highlights, extensions, Botox, plastic surgery, etc. etc. etc. etc.

Now I have worn contacts, had lasik, occasionally wear makeup, have had a gym and a Weight Watchers membership. I’ve tanned, got highlights for my wedding, paid a mint for acrylics, and I would love laser hair removal. I can’t even count how many purses, shirts, and shoes I’ve owned over the years.

But… well. None of that “newness” matters. I was still the same… me.

Except where Jesus has made me new. Like I said, originally my entire goal was to mock the catch phrase “Why be you, when you can be new”, but the more I thought about it… the more I realized… wow. That really is enticing if the right voice is saying it to me.

Why be you… addicted to food?
Why be you… a liar and a gossip?
Why be you… who has the self-confidence of a flea?
Why be you… full of lust and greed?
Why be you… self-centered and weak?

So Jesus says to me, “Why be you… when you can be new?” But it’s the kind of “new” that won’t be out of style next season. It’s the kind of new that feels amazing on earth and will be even better in heaven.

It’s the kind of new that I want to be. need to be. am designed to be.

Anyone who belongs to Christ has become a new person. The old life is gone; a new life has begun! 2 Corinthians 5:17