A New Road

2014 has been the beginning of a new way of living for me. It would be easiest to say I'm on a weight loss journey, but that's so incomplete, so inadequate a description. Yes, I hope to lose weight. Yes, I hope to become fit. But more importantly I hope to break cycles of thinking that have brought me to where I am today. This is truly a spiritual battle, one where I am relying on the same omnipotent God who redeemed my husband from a destructive addiction and who restored our marriage. I have seen Him work, and it has been spectacular.

And so I have surrendered my food addiction to Him. I have been reluctant, even snarlingly unwilling, to relinquish this. I love food. I enjoy it. I savor it. I anticipate it and plan around it. I depend on it. Which is precisely the problem. God has been gently, firmly, unrelentingly reminding me that I must depend on Him, and Him alone. Food has become my idol, and my idol must be demolished: cast to the ground and pulverized to dust. 

I am not capable of this. I have tried and I have failed. I could try the remainder of my days, and even if I succeeded in choosing kale over pizza, even if I succeeded in losing 80 pounds, I would still have failed. Because my goal is not just to be healthy; my goal is not just to be slim. My goal is to be devoted to my gracious and benevolent Lord, and to serve only Him. As long as I am subject to food, I am serving only myself. 

It has been a slow slog so far, but that's good. I want to be a living sacrifice, transformed by the renewing of my mind (Romans 12:1-2). And that takes time. The kind of time that requires perseverance. The kind of time that cultivates faith. The kind of time that forges a new road. 'Cause I'm sick of the old one. That one that's littered with lies like "I had a hard day; I deserve a treat" and pockmarked with shame and failed attempts. I'm parting ways with that road. I'm taking the one made through the depths of the sea. 

My Love/Hate Relationship With J. Crew

J. Crew is my inspiration and my nemesis. It beckons with its hearty wools and chunky tweeds, and crushes my spirit with its size-0 tailoring. I imagine myself dressing in its casually-draped button-downs and bold necklaces, its Audrey Hepburn skimmer pants and narrow flats, but my plus-size self has no place here. I should avoid it – I've learned not to cultivate discontentment – but I also think it's good for me. It's good for me to remember that I am the same person I was when I could fit into these slim clothes. (In fact, I'm a better person than that girl; not because of my weight, but because of what's happened in the years that have passed.) It's good for me to remember that my worth is not proportionate to my weight. But it's also good for me to remember that my body is a temple, that God desires me to be my best, that He calls me out of my ways and into His. I want to knock food down a few pegs, to be able to sincerely say (like Jesus), “My food is to do the will of Him who sent Me, and to finish His work" (John 4:34 NKJV). 

And so I take tiny steps into this journey: saying "yes" to kickball with the boys, joining (and going to) Curves, saying "no" to chocolate before bed once (or dare I say twice?!) a week, finally doing the Freedom From Emotional Eating study I've procrastinated for years. I move into this process tentatively, warily, but knowing that I can harness the power of the One who created all, who saved my marriage, who fulfilled my dreams, who overcame even death.