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Food for Thought

June 11, 2017

Let’s just start by saying that this blog has been brewing in my heart for quite some time now. I’ve wrestled with it, continually thought about it, and consciously prayed about it. This topic has become an integral part of me and my journey of dealing with it. 
        If you know me or about anyone that knows me, you know that I am kind of a health nut at times. I actually enjoy exercising and eating healthy foods. Being healthy is something I aspire to achieve and enjoy working through, yet this passion came pre-packaged with some major struggles of its own for me, and maybe for some of you. I became so enveloped in the idea of having a “fit, toned body,” the kind you see on super models or on your popular page on Instagram. I, by no means, am saying that this type of skinny body is bad at all, yet when the thought of it consumes your mind, as it did for me, it can lead to more serious problems. I began thinking so much about how much I was eating, when I was eating, and how I could fit time to workout into my day. For an eighth grade girl who is still trying to find her identity, something I still am working on, this infatuation with being “healthy” led to some not-so-fun times. I could no longer go through the day free of worries because all I could think about was how I could “control” the situation to fit my “health standards.” This became a destructive pattern for me, one that my mom raised awareness to and called me out for it. I am so thankful for her talking to me about my anxiety and worry over food, even though I was so embarrassed for not being perfect. I thought if I looked a certain way and ate only certain things, I would only gain praise from others, not concern for my health. Personally, I hate disappointing others and having someone call me out for things I do wrong, but I am working to accept feedback from people I love, no matter how harsh it is. Through my conversation with my mom, I was brought to tears because I finally realized how scared and worried I had become over my own self. The habitual thinking about food and concern for looking a certain way had caused me to lose control over my happiness. The devil had gripped me tight, not allowing me to enjoy the normal things a teenager should. I am not saying that I still didn’t experience happiness or peace, but I definitely didn’t have the joy that God continually offers. Sometimes I think it is silly to say my worry over food consumed me, but it really did. For some, it may be their anxiety over being popular, pleasing everyone around them, or like me, their looks, but in the end, I believe it is only natural for us humans to hold onto something that steals our joy. We look to earthly things for satisfaction when there is no lasting substance to them at all; we lose our eternal joy daily to our temporal satisfaction in worldly objects or ideas. I am not saying that I never worry about what I look like now or how I eat; I still think about it too much sometimes. Although through my whole experience, I’ve come to realize that it is not something I am meant to battle on my own. The Lord says for us “to not fear them [our worries], for it is the Lord your God who fights for you” (English Standard Version, Deuteronomy 3:22). The Lord also tell us to “not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus” (English Standard Version, Philippians 4:6-7). By consciously praying over my struggles and leaning into God for peace in them, my freedom from evil is secured. Your freedom from evil is secured when you do this. This is my prayer for all of you. We are not meant to and we were not made to carry our burdens by ourselves. God’s plan, His will for us was to lay those heavy, gross, joy-stealing worries at His feet, not at our own. He has so much greater things in life for us than worrying and being consumed by fear. God works ONLY for our good. I know this because I’ve experienced it. I’ve seen myself go from constant struggle to peace in God’s plan, even if I still worry at times. The Lord’s got me, and friends, He’s got you.
With love,C

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