“For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the cosmic power over this present darkness, against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly places.” -Ephesians 6:12
For those of you who may be wondering why I have been posting so much about my current weight loss journey……
For me, it is about so much more than looking good. I have wrestled with food addiction since I was 12 years old. I am now 49. That is 37 years. 37 years that I have carried shame about the way that I eat. 37 years that I have struggled. 37 years that I have felt hopeless and sure that I could never be free.
About 20 years ago, I gave up. I just figured that I would be overweight and addicted to sugar and junk food for the rest of my life. I stopped trying to fight and let the monster win. When I went to the grocery store, I was embarrassed by what was in my cart, but I wanted to eat that crappy food more than I wanted to take care of myself.
Two years ago, I had a cardiac scare. You would think that being sent to The Cardiologist would have scared me skinny. It did, for a while. I managed to lose 20 pounds, but then came the winter of 2015. My Mother falling down the rabbit hole of dementia. The nursing home. Trying to hold on to a house we cannot afford. Rejection related to my calling and where I fit in the Church. It was all just too much. Fear, doubt and insecurity are potent adversaries. The “buy one -get one free” bags of Twix bars started making it back into my cart. Oreos. Doritos. Whole birthday cakes- when it was nowhere near my birthday. Trips to my old favorite place, Pepperidge Farm…..Before I knew it, the weight that The Cardiologist had scared off of me was back- and I was doubly sure that I was doomed to failure…….
Then came the Summer of Rest, 2015. One of our many glorious weekends on Cuttyhunk Island, and my Husband’s prophetic remarks which just may have saved my life…….
A couple was struggling to get their boat under control on a very windy day. They were having steering trouble and were stuck right in the middle of the channel. A kind Cuttyhunk fisherman was already on the way to their rescue, when my Husband called me up from our cabin to watch the scene. The wife on the stricken vessel was large, useless and clearly overwhelmed by the crisis. She was basically standing there, wringing her hands and looking worried. As we watched the sad spectacle, my Husband looked over at me, and with the quiet certainty of a charismatic faith healer, pronounced….”See that woman? That is you in another one hundred pounds.” I am not exaggerating in the least when I say that the Universe paused at that moment. I froze. For some reason (which I choose to call the Grace of God), those words entered into my soul. A switch was flipped. You know those life changing moments- when you will forever mark time with “before” and “after”? That was one of them for me. Truth. My Husband was telling me the Truth, in a way that The Cardiologist couldn’t. I could not hear her the way that I could hear him. I just couldn’t.
Something changed that day in June of 2015. In a moment. Because of two sentences which will forever mark my “before” and “after”. There is no doubt in my mind that the voice that came out of my Husband that day was the voice of God. The battles that we fight- the battles of addiction- are not battles fought on an earthly plane. They are spiritual battles being waged against the powers of darkness. The powers of darkness which present themselves in the form of shame and lies and gluttony. The powers of darkness which present themselves in the lonely hours of the night, when the voices tell you that you will never be free. That you are unattractive. That you are a loser. That you are hopeless and weak and doomed. That you have no self control- and you never will have any. That if you told anyone how weak and helpless you feel, they would pity you and mock you and walk away. The thing about that crap is…..It isn’t true. Not even a little bit. Not even one, tiny, little bit.
Here is some Truth for you powers of darkness……Here is some Truth:
“Do not participate in the unfruitful deeds of darkness, but instead even expose them; for it is disgraceful even to speak of the things which are done by them in secret. But all things become visible when they are exposed by the light, for everything that becomes visible is light. For this reason it says, “ Awake, sleeper, And arise from the dead, And Christ will shine on you.” -Ephesians 5:11-14
The Truth is….that I have Jesus and that makes me a person of the Light, not a person of the darkness. The Truth is….that I CAN cultivate the fruit of self control, by the power of the Holy Spirit. The Truth is….that when I am weak, the power of Light can make me strong.
Addiction is cunning, baffling, and powerful- but it is a power of the darkness.
And, in the end, the Light will always overcome the darkness.
“In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was in the beginning with God. All things were made through him, and without him was not any thing made that was made. In him was life, and the life was the light of men. The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it.”
Free at last….Free at last…..Thank God almighty…..I am free at last.