In our society there is an obsession with weight. Check out the “new books” section at your local library and you will find scores of weight loss books. Most of them promise that it will be quick and painless, too. I have been at a stable body weight for about 20 years. Of course, I’ve traveled up and down the scale at times, but I usually bounce back to the same number. This is where my body likes to be.
A couple of years ago I developed some rather OCD behaviors related to my body weight. I would go into this cycle of going out of town, eating out, gaining weight, coming home, and then trying to lose the gained weight so I could return to my target, healthy weight. I think that all of us can agree that losing weight is not painless or quick! It can be sheer torture.
I started being very controlling over my meals and planning them obsessively. I read every library book about diet and weight loss. I subscribed to blogs that would help me lose weight. I weighed myself all day long, literally. Taking off my clothes and standing naked on a scale, all day long. I even had panic attacks in grocery store parking lots about what food to buy!
My “stinkin’ thinkin'” got so out of control that I went to prayer ministry over this struggle. I did get some measure of freedom from prayer ministry but the true “lie of my heart” was not yet uncovered. When my pastor preached a message on “Strongholds of the Mind,” I knew that I needed freedom. I cut and pasted his handout in my journal and studied it.
Soon afterward, we went out of town. I felt out of control as I knew that we would be eating out a lot and I could not control my meals so that I would not gain weight. I am ashamed to admit it, but I had fearful thoughts about gaining weight and being out of control at least once a minute on the five hour drive up there. When I came home I looked at the sermon notes again and I sought the Lord to reveal the lie I was believing once and for all.
I was surprised. The lie was not about how I looked in the mirror, or being healthy, or what meals I ate, or how my clothes fit.
It was about dessert.
I wanted to eat dessert every day as I’ve done for many years. As long as I was at my target weight, I felt free to have dessert. If I was above my target weight, I could not have dessert. Since I always wanted dessert, I controlled my diet so that I was always at my target weight so that I could always have dessert.
Because eating dessert made me happy.
This was the lie: Denying my flesh of desserts is extremely difficult and depressing so I must always remain at my healthy weight so that I can eat dessert daily. I am miserable, frustrated, and unhappy if I cannot eat dessert each day.
Simply put, I thought that I needed to eat dessert daily to be happy.
The truth: I do not need dessert to be happy. Eight simple words, but as I allowed this truth to sink down into my heart, it brought such freedom.
What about you….is there a lie that you are believing that is causing you fear and torment? Ask God what the lie is, and listen quietly as He speaks the truth to your heart.