“I rejoice in following your statutes as one rejoices in great riches.” Psalm 119:14 (NIV)
I’ve shared recently that I haven’t been succeeding in the area of diet and exercise. I have the tools – I just have no willpower or desire to obey the tools I’ve been given. I want to want to… but I haven’t done anything about my want to. I’ve started and stopped and started and stopped multiple times this summer, thinking this time will work. I’ve had health scares reminding me if I don’t take charge of my health I’ll be heading down a path I really don’t want to walk… heart disease, diabetes, high blood pressure, etc. and even that hasn’t changed my behavior. God’s lavished His grace and love on me… putting people and reminders and even speaking to me directly Himself about what He desires and finally I started listening, really listening.
I truly desire to love and obey God with my whole heart. I know that when I choose to live a life of disobedience I block God’s blessings from my life. You would think I would want His blessings more than I would want a cookie or ice cream or (fill in the blank). However, the food keeps calling, I keep answering and then feeling guilty for being too weak to resist things I don’t even truly want.
Yesterday I realized an important truth. Unless I make a personal covenant with God, I don’t stick with my choices. Something always comes up, I somehow justify my actions and what I want to do never happens. I end up circling around the same issues continuously. So, I sat down and thought about why I was successful last summer versus struggling so hard this summer. Last summer I knew that God wanted me to fast and learn a new lifestyle. I felt better living in that lifestyle and after a while, it wasn’t difficult anymore, it just was.
I know the guidelines God has asked me to live under. They aren’t difficult and while they require giving up some food, possibly forever, there is still a lot of food left to choose from. I sat down this morning and dedicated my life to living a lifestyle of fasting. Fasting from the things God wants me to stay away from permanently, permission to eat certain things on certain occasions but not regularly and freedom to eat other things always. I wrote it all down in black and white so there would be no arguing when cravings hit and no way to justify giving in to temptation. This time it’s not a time period of fasting… it’s a lifestyle of fasting.
I truly want to live under God’s blessings. I truly want to obey Him in all areas. In order for me to actively succeed with those goals, I have to live a lifestyle of fasting. Not a temporary fast, not a “diet” or meal plan. A fast from certain foods and a complete surrender to His way.
I am serious this time. So much so that the snack cupboard that is permanently off limits to me has been relocated from beneath the microwave (where it stared me in the face and called my name multiple times a day) to a cupboard I will now never have reason to open for myself. A lifestyle of fasting. Feel free to ask me how I’m doing. I choose to be authentic and accountable to those who want to ask.
© Cheri Swalwell 2017