Happy Valentine’s Day!
Welcome to all those visiting from the Blog Tour with Made to Crave webcast! I am giddy with excitement that you have decided to drop in today. I feel like I am hosting you all in my home…well…you are…in the home of my heart. That is where God dwells and has me share from most days. Glad you are here, grab a cup of coffee and sit a while. At the end of the post today I have a GIVE AWAY but let me share my story of how God got a hold of my cravings.
As I have mentioned to you in recent days, I have been reading a book called Made to Crave by Lysa Terkeurst. This book has helped me revisit and cement a teaching God took me through about 3 years ago. It was about the same time Lysa was going through all of her weight loss and revelation of how our eating habits can sometimes reflect the spiritual aspects of our life as well.
In 2008, I had a routine visit at the doctor…you know the one that all of us women dread each year. Well, I thought to myself that day – “let’s just get in and get out of here” kind of mood as I walked through the doors of the doctor’s building. My doctor friend decided it was time I had a “come to Jesus” meeting about my weight and the potential issues it could cause years from now with my history.
Let me back up. In May of 2002, I had just 2 weeks post-delivered my 2nd child when life came to an abrupt stop. Gallstones were causing many issues during the pregnancy and post delivery. Especially when this particular day the stones were big enough to get stuck in my bile duct causing all the pancreatic enzymes to back up and cause a burning effect inside my entire body. (You can read about it above in the “about” section.) Talk about messing up your day!
I spent the next 49 days fighting for my life down at Shands Hospital in Gainesville, Florida. Needless to say, God and I won! I am a walking, talking and now writing MIRACLE. There is a whole LOT more to that story but back to the weight issue I struggled with.
During this time of healing I gained up to a weight of 200 lbs. The doctor’s told me I would eventually lose the weight during the healing time and I did. Down to a weight I haven’t seen since after college. I did finally get down to 135. I tell the numbers because I have come to realize that I am not defined by the numbers only the Grace of God! I also didn’t stay there, I am sad to say.
Being grateful for having your life back is a good thing but eating your way through it is another. I now have ping-pong my way back to 160 at the time of my doctor’s visit. A number my doctor didn’t think well suited my small framed body…hence the prayer meeting we now needed to have to get me back on track.
During that time of the pancreatitis, I developed Diabetes as well as serious heart problems. I have since been totally healed from Diabetes and I am no longer on any of the 5 heart medications that I was told I would be on for life. Another indicator that God miraculous healed me. But these red flags are the reason my doctor and I had to have the “come to Jesus” talk.
I agreed with him and decided this time – I had to do it for ME, not my husband, not my kids or not even for the reason to be able to fit in those smaller sized jeans…this time is was for ME.
I think that is what made it stick. I had to do this because my life and my body was God’s holy temple. I needed to start treating it like it was God’s temple! Paying attention to what I ate and how much I ate.
That is where I began. I remember crying a lot, the struggle was hard! I did not know what exactly to eat and I realized I needed lots of help.
I took the first step by acknowledging that I needed to get some education and accountability.
I walked into Weight Watchers for a meeting one day in October.
This is where I began to get some education about which foods were right. But something was still missing. My spiritual side needing some revamping too.
I began to realize that with each meal that I planned and prepared there was still temptation that came around the corner of my kitchen like Satan on a mission. I had to realize that I could not fight this battle on my own. I needed me some bon-a-fide Jesus to help me win this battle.
I searched many of the scriptures that I am now reading in Lysa’s Made to Crave book. Praise God she had the boldness to step out and put them all down in a book! I now have a battle plan to go to each day when Satan starts to try to get me sabotaged!
I am here to say, (like I think many others are saying that are reading this book) “Lysa, how did you get inside my head!”. SO many of her struggles are ones that I face daily.
Here are some of my favorite underlined portions from the book:
* “I had to get honest enough to admit it: I relied on food more than I relied on God. I craved food more than I craved God. Food was my comfort. Food was my reward. Food was my joy. Food was what I turned to in times of stress, sadness, and even times of happiness.”
* “Each time I craved something I knew was not apart of my plan, I used that craving as a prompt to pray. I craved a lot. So, I found
myself praying a lot.” (My PANTRY became my prayer closet! )
* The whole entire chapter 9 of “But Exercise Makes Me Want to Cry!” – this is still my battle every week!
* “Our flesh buys right into Satan’s lie that it’s not fair for things to be withheld from us. So we bite into the forbidden fruit and allow Satan to write “shame” across our heart.”
* “God’s power is made perfect in our weakness! 2 Corinthians 12:9-10”
Oh, my list could go on and on girlfriends! There are some amazing encouraging words that many people are finding and putting to good use from this book. There is such freedom in the Word of God and Lysa does an amazing job in making us see things the way I think God wants us to put Him into the reality of life.
After 9 months on this journey, I am proud to say I lost 20 pounds! I look back and I absolutely could not have done it without Jesus! I am sure this walk has not ended. I still struggle with wanting what I can’t have. Some days are good and some days are bad. But I am here to say the good sure does far out weight the bad now a days. Where I get my “go to” strength from now on is a different place than where I was when I began this journey.
Let me end with sharing with you a neat story that just happened this Sunday. I was helping out with the kids program in church and a little girl was standing next to me while we were singing praise songs during the worship time.
I did not know her. I had never met her. She hugged me with the biggest hug during one of the songs and looked up with these gorgeous green eyes and said, “You are so pretty!” I was caught totally off guard!
Tears are now flowing down my face as I write this because I know my God sent that as a message to remind me that HE has made me pretty on the inside and out.
Oh, I pray that you will know that Jesus thinks you are pretty! You are His child and no matter what is going on in your life or even what you look like on the outside, Jesus is your biggest cheerleader! He thinks you are PRETTY!
Now for the fun part! Today, I have 5…yes, you saw that right…5 “Made to Crave” books that I would like to GIVE AWAY! FREE! Just post your favorite “go to” scripture in the comments below and I will draw from the list and announce the winner Wednesday! So be sure to check back and see if you won! 🙂
God bless you in your Journey today!
Enjoyed reading this Amy!! I have not heard of Made to Crave but it sounds like something I need to read!!
My favorite go-to scripture is James 1:2-3. No matter what is going on, I go to it to remind myself to “count it all joy.” I went to talk to my pastor about an issue that I was dealing with several years ago and he pointed me to this scripture. Even though I had read it so many times before, it jumped off the pages and spoke to me then like never before.
See you Wednesday!
I would have to say myfavorite is Psalm 119:105, Thy word is a lamp unto my feet, and a light unto my path. This is one of the first scriputres I had memorized during my quite time with Jesus as a young teenager. The verse always seems to pop in at the right time when I need it. Whether it by my walk with Him, a money issue, or just a good ole pity party. It always seems to suit. Thank you for posting your heart for us to read. You are an encouragement!!
This one is a foundational one! We need those lamps of Jesus in our lives! Thanks!
I love this post Amy! My favorite “go to” scriptures are Colossians 3:23 (motivation), I John 4:16 (strength), and the extra push Romans 8:37 ( a reminder of God’s current and past help in overcoming my alcohol addiction). I love you and am so touched by the words, thoughts, and music you share!
Hey Sweet Chick! I have already noted your scriptures! They are fabulous! So glad you are my friend! Blessings to you!
LOVE Colossians 3:23! Wow! Thanks for pointing me to that verse. Lately, James 1:22 has been jumping out at me (not just hearers but doers) and hearing Col 3:23 just backs that up! So cool!
Thanks for sharing!
I just love this one:
May the Lord direct your hearts into God’s love and Christ’s perseverance. 2 Thes 3:5
Thank you for sharing your heart and hope with us:)
Blessings & hugs–
Thanks Tori! Lysa’s teaching on this scripture tonight totally inspired me! Thanks for coming by! Come back again! 🙂
Daniel 32:11b – Those who know their God will show great strength and take action.
This scripture is incredible! I am noting this one! Might have to put this one on the door of the pantry! 🙂 Thanks so much for coming by – come back again! 🙂
Thanks for sharing this! When we draw near to God, we will want to show that strength and love in our actions – yes! Amen!
Mine is not really a scripture, but before I roll out of bed each morning I pray for the Lord to give me strength to eat healthy that day. Like, Mandisa & Lysa have said it’s about saying “yes” just one day at a time…not worrying about tomorrow for tomorrow has enough worries of its own.
Hope, You are exactly right! Sometimes I even have to take it one meal at a time. Snacks included. Praise God for your obedience!
You ARE beautiful inside and out! I thank the Lord for you and your encouraging ways! Jer. 29:11 is always my life verse. When I am unable to see past the pull-ups and potty training failures, mounds of dirty clothes, ministry work, messy house, and endless dirty dishes from little people who want to eat 3 times a day I remember that HE has a plan for me and all this is to bless me and not to harm me. I am also reminded that all this is for a season and His big picture is to make me more like Him. He has plans for me that are full of hope and a future and when I call on Him, He will answer me!
I love you my sweet friend. I love your blog and am so blessed by it! I may not comment everyday, but the Lord uses it daily to encourage me!
My favorite verse has always been Jer 29:11. But lately with all the flu going around and “life” that just seems to get in the way of our family routine, I have been turning to Matthew 11:28-Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Don’t we all need that rest? Especially us moms who try to hold the fort down with all the world crashing around us!
Proverbs 3:5-6 has always been a go to verse for me and I just love the verses following. The Message puts Proverbs 3:7-8 this way: Run to God! Run from evil!
Your body will glow with health, your very bones will vibrate with life!
Also Psalm 46:1 reminding myself that God is an ever present help and deliverer in times of trouble.
God is our refuge and strength,
an ever-present help in trouble.
So nice to meet you and hope to meet you irl at She Speaks this year!!
This is my second or third favorite passage in the whole Bible – Proverbs 3:5-8. (1 Thess 5:23 is the second or third, too. I can never decide which one is more important to me ; )
I appreciate your sweet reminder to tap into that truth from Proverbs. I really needed to hear it today : ) Thanks.
Also, very interesting, is that you listed a nearby reference (Psalm 46:1) to my absolute favorite verse (Psalm 46:10). It’s too funny (but no coincidence) that God is speaking! Wow!
Let all who have ears hear the great message the LORD has for you today!
Be still and know that He is God ~ paraphrased from Ps 46:10
It is nice to meet you, Amy! I got your web address from the blog-roll of the last Made to Crave website, and I am so glad I made time for a visit.
You have an amazing God-story of how He led you rise above your circumstances and focus on Him. Wow! Thanks for sharing your story.
My favorite go-to script is one that I discovered about 2 years ago . . . at a time when I realized that I was allowing the Voice of Lies and Deceit to drown out the Voice of Truth. For many years, I allowed a lie to keep playing over and over like a broken record in my head: “You are ugly. I mean, look at you. You have crooked teeth, stringy-straw hair and you have blemishes all over your face! Yuck.”
Then, God spoke the truth over me – and set me free:
“But now he has reconciled you by Christ’s physical body through death to present you holy in his sight, without blemish and free from accusation -” Col. 1:22 (NIV)
How sweet the song that now plays in my head: “I am a fearfully and wonderfully made Child of the One, True, Most High King – free of blemish in His sight!”
Amazing Grace! Sweet Mercy!
Shelly, you are a breath of fresh air! Such an encourager! So glad you came – I have written up a lot of the verses you shared and they will be posted in so many places today! My children would like to thank you too! 🙂
Please come back! 🙂
My favorite go to verse is:
Psalm 37:4 – Delight yourself in the Lord and He will give you the desires of your heart.
It reminds me not to try and fulfill all my own selfish desires but to rely on God, seek after Him first and then He will give me the desires that are best for me and work them out in my life. Such an amazing promise to cling to!
If your giveaway is open to Canadians also, then please enter me too, thanks!
This one is good – We could preach a sermon on what it means to just “Delight” – LOVE IT! Thanks for stopping by! Come again!
I am glad I was able to read your words on God and weight. It is easy to lose focus when food is staring you down. My favorite go to verses are Proverbs 3:5, 6. Trusting in the Lord is what I am trying to do as I go through the journey of life. When I listen to Him I learn and grow. Thanks.
I am so glad my story ministered to you. I love Proverbs 3 too! Leaning not on my understanding but trusting in the Lord is a reminder we all need daily! Blessings to you!
Thanks Amy for your words. May God continue to Bless you!!!!