This week I started Priscilla Shirer’s study, “Breathe.” Holy moly ladies. I could just stop writing these posts and refer to that study. It is so good.
When I was younger I used to honestly pray God would make me anorexic for just a month or two. I have always struggled with my weight, it is a constant thought in my brain and a constant struggle in my life. Towards the end of 2013 I was approached to teach a new Rick Warren study entitled, “The Daniel Plan.” I taught a lunch group at our church and loved it. I truly felt like I had turned a corner on the food addiction in my life. Then BAM April hit with a vengeance. I was really making headway with this struggle and knowing I was emotional eater Satan gave me emotional issue after emotional issue. These emotional issues were starting to take their toll on me physically and I was mad about it. I had a pity party for a couple of months. Stopped eating healthy. I basically gave up. This went on for months. Then one day I was making room in my closet for more junk and came across a box of journals. Normally, I would appreciate finding these keepsakes and reading how I’ve grown. But this time all I found was a box of disappointment. Journal entry after journal entry proved to me that food was an issue 14 years ago, 10 years ago, 5 years ago, and so on. How had I allowed something to still haunt me? All I wanted to do was burn that box. I felt stuck and ashamed.
A few days later I received a text message from a friend telling me, yes, telling me, we were going to meet Friday morning to run and I was going to run the Bentonville Half Marathon with her. You read all that right, she told me all those things. Normally, my stubborn self would have replied, “Oh thanks, but I’m super busy in my life right now.” But this was different. I replied back, “I’m game. I really need this.” Best decision I’ve made this year was, hands down, responding to that text.
2014 has been a heck of year for me. Little did I know that praying all those years that God would just make my love for food go away, He would, in fact, literally close my throat to certain foods. Yep, that’s right, close my throat. It happened twice this year and after an array of scratch tests and blood tests it was confirmed I was allergic to wheat, eggs, and corn, but mainly yeast. You read all those right. Guess what? Yeast and wheat are in a TON of things. Knowing what it’s like to have my throat close I’m more than able and ready to stay away from those foods.
I know you’re asking, “What does this have to do with breathing?” Let me tell you, the limitation of not eating those foods has brought more freedom in my life than I have ever known relating to my struggle with food. I stopped consuming myself with counting calories. I have the freedom to eat what I can and exercise when I can and trust God is using this year for His glory. I am taking a deep, long breath in the fact that my Creator knew these insane allergies existed and He knew when the right time to bring them to light would be. He knew 2014 would be a hard year for me. He knew 2014 would stretch me further than I ever intended to be stretched in life and in ministry. He knew it all. In the first video of “Breathe,” Priscilla Shirer says, “I am not God and I’m leaving room for Him in my life.” The entire video was 35 minutes long and that sentence spoke the most to me.
How often to we really breathe in God? How often do we really let God be God?