Getting Real about My Little Food Idol

I recently posted a picture of myself holding a big rubber "blob" of fat that represented five pounds of weight loss. And I held up my hand with five fingers extended. At that point, I'd lost more than 25 pounds.

Sounds great, but I know the truth. It's hard work. It’s fighting emotional hunger. It’s struggling against self-will.
I don't think I've got this weight thing licked.

And I don't think I'm a total success even though losing 25+ pounds. No ... nothing could be further from the truth.

Most of the time in this journey I’ve been a mess, sliding back into fleshly habits and making choices that hijack my "success."

I'm learning that destructive choices are only a short slide away from faithfulness.

I may "look good" some days  eating my lettuce  but when it comes to food, there's this little idol I worship called "pleasure." (God created us for pleasure, but too often, I find pleasure in the wrong places, don't you?)

          Even good things (like eating) can become an idol.

We’re to keep ourselves from them … we're to flee idolatry (1 Corinthians 10:231 John 5:21; 1 Corinthians 10:14).

Idols are a matter of what the heart loves. Especially when it loves something more than loving or obeying God or taking care of His Temple (our body) in this world.

The scriptures say, “…sin will have no dominion over you, since you are not under law but under grace” … but “where sin increased, grace abounded all the more” (Romans 6:14; 5:20).

So I've been getting real about my idol. Many days, it's a matter of picking myself up again and saying, "Jesus, I can't do this... I keep proving to you (and others) I can't." (John 15:5)

And then the Gospel of God's great grace reminds me that Jesus can do the impossible in and through me (Philippians 4:13).

Any success I'm having is His.

Do you struggle with an idol of addiction? What does God's message of grace mean to you?


Marja Verschoor-Meijers said...

Eating disorders can turn into idolatry, because they possess your mind. it is amazing that you have lost 25 pounds, wow. I cannot even get a pound off :) I am learning to be disciplined, but sometimes I am sick and tired of trying. Your blogpost is an encouragement :)

Dawn Wilson said...

Thanks for your encouragement about MY encouragement, Marja! I went to a certified nutritionist who taught me how my body basically works ... how God designed us to use food. When I stopped feeding my body all the sugar / high fats / high carbs, the weight started coming off because instead of my body working overtime to burn off those foods, it could start burning off all the fat in my body (that showing and that around my vital organs). I'm feeling stronger and healthier!

That doesn't mean it's easy. My fleshly desires for pleasure are often met by these kinds foods, instead of pleasures God meant me to have. I've learned when I am "sick and tired" of trying, it's usually after I've eaten a high-carb food, which tricks my brain into thinking I need more and more and more. If you are in San Diego, I recommend the nutritionist Kim Ruby at University Compounding Pharmacy. She is such an encouraging woman who never shames me, but always encourages me to look at the big picture of my goal to be healthy. (As with any program, there is $$$ involved, but the way I see it, I'd be spending those dollars on more meds and doctor visits, because I was getting so sick.)

The idolatry is real. The addiction is real. And when I recognize that and remember what it takes for my body to "fuel the furnace" of burning off my fat, I do better. I also read Lysa TerKeurst's "Made to Crave," and I'm just starting (today) a 60-day devotional book she wrote, "Made To Crave Devotional: 60 Days to Craving God, Not Food."

Let me pray for you ... for us.

"Father God, I ask you to help Marja in this battle -- and it is a battle -- to overcome the lack of discipline and idolatry of food addiction. Give her encouragement today that though she cannot, you can. Thank you for her word of encouragement to me today. I am so thankful for you, Jesus, because you bore all the shame of my addiction and will give victory to those who listen to and trust you. Thank you for amazing Gospel grace in this and every area where I mess up in life. You are my Rock, and I love you." Amen