Monday, March 16, 2015

Starting Over....Again

Well, it's time for a re-do, a fresh start, a new beginning.  The 'freedom' I had decided to embrace in my last Monday check-in for healthy eating quickly spiraled down into the old familiar lack of self-control.  I have been eating terribly.  Not only have I been eating terribly, I've been eating a LOT.  It's been binge eating if I'm honest.

I am so grateful that even though I fail time and time and time again, that God loves me through it all.  And, he always has grace and new mercies to shower on me.

I'm done beating myself up about my consistent failures.  When I do that I only sink deeper into the hole of self-loathing.  Am I disappointed in myself?  Am I frustrated?  Absolutely.

But, here's the thing.  I could wallow in that.  I could sit and lament how far I'd be by this point if I'd just stayed on track.   I could be angry at myself for gaining back all the weight that I worked so hard to lose last year.  I could convince myself that I'm doomed to repeat this pattern of lose, gain, lose, gain for the rest of my life.

OR I can set my face forward in hope rather than looking back in regret.  I can pick myself up and start over knowing that God doesn't love me any less for my failings.  And, He's always willing....eager strengthen me as I turn to Him.

I had mentioned that I had started keeping a small journal of 'words' or reminders that I felt like God was giving me.  I looked back at that journal and found an entry from February.  I remember I'd been having a particularly rough day with my kids that day.  And, I know I was feeling extremely low.  I was feeling like a failure.  Much like I could easily allow myself to feel now.

But, as I read through that entry, I was refreshed and encouraged once again.  Here's just a few of the things I had written down...things I felt God was saying to me.
 - I am here.
 - I'm always here.
 - Keep seeking me.  It won't always be easy.
 - Remember all that I have done for you.  My purposes will stand.
 - No shame.  Only moving forward.
 - I am a gentle Father.

I am claiming these today as promises.  I am thanking God for his faithfulness even when I'm faithless.

I've also been convicted in my spirit that a lot of my issues that I struggle with - food issues, time management, angry reactions toward my children - stem from a larger issue with self-control .  The Bible has a lot to say about self- control.

Galatians 5:22  "But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control.  Against such things there is no law."

I Thessalonians 5:6  "So then, let us not be like others, who are asleep, but let us be alert and self-controlled."

1Thessalonians 5:8  "But since we belong to the day, let us be self-controlled, putting on faith and love as a breastplate, and the hope of salvation as a helmet."

1 Peter 1:13  "Therefore, prepare your minds for action; be self-controlled; set your hope fully on the grace to be given you when Jesus Christ is revealed."

This is just a small sampling of the verses that speak about self-control.

Again, I feel weak.  I don't know how to achieve this self-control that God so obviously wants for my life.  But, I know that I can ask Him to help me in this area.  And, so that is what I plan to do.

What are my goals?  What will the daily changes look like in my live?   Well, here are few of my goals for each area where I know I lack self-control.

Food issues  - Eat mainly a plant-based diet with small to moderate amounts of meat & dairy
 - Avoid most processed sugars
 - Eat mostly whole foods.  Avoid processed/ packaged foods.
 - Avoid preservatives, food dyes, & artificial sweeteners.
 - Only drink alcohol occassionally
 - Incorporate exercise into my life

Time management
- Spend less time on Facebook, watching tv, surfing the internet.
 - Create a general game plan for the day.
 - Start to formulate patterns for my days, weeks, months
 - Embrace opportunities to spend time with my kiddos rather than looking at them as interruptions.

Anger/ Dealing with my children
 - Begin my day with an attitude of thankfulness (even when I don't feel like it.)
 - Invite God into my day & my day's activities each morning.
 - 'Catch' my kids doing good things.  Let them know when I see that.
 - When I feel angry or frustrated, be conscious of using and even, calm voice rather than yelling (which only exacerbates the situation)

Pray.  Pray.  Pray.

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