My best “before and after” pics so far.
In the past two years, I have gone from 324 lbs and a size 26, down 155 lbs (100 lbs of this in a 120 day INTENSIVE window of time) to a BMI healthy weight of 169 lbs (so far) and a size 8.
I was at one point on 16 different prescriptions, including multiple inhalers, had chronic fatigue and pain issues, recurring pneumonia, sometimes serious digestive issues (I thought this was normal for everyone!), breathing and heart-racing issues, cyclical migraines, hormonal imbalances, systemic yeast infection, and bad skin issues, to say nothing of my depression and purposelessness –
I didn’t even know that my core belief was that I was not “worth” saving.
In spite of a 4 month window where I had to have spinal surgery, I have not gained back any of the 155 lbs I have so far lost, and I am HEALED of almost all my issues.
Now – NO pneumonia, NO remaining prescriptions, NO fatigue pain issues, my menstrual cycle has been 4 weeks regular for over a year (first time in my whole LIFE!) and only “normal” cramping (instead of the excessive, debilitating pain to which I had grown accustomed), and more than one medical professional has told me I have a heart “conditioned like a runner’s” .. and I have energy like never before, and clarity of thinking.
ALL because of GRACE. ALL because we have a GOOD FATHER in God who gives generously to all who ask for wisdom, without finding fault.
ALL because God gave me a vision of what he had MADE me to be. ALL because He introduced me to my best friend who “just so happened” to be a fitness/nutritionist who faithfully encouraged me for YEARS beforehand to do the HARD thing, to be prepared to “pay in pain” because I didn’t get to my state overnight, a friend who would ultimately give me the tool I needed to succeed, and teach me to use it! ALL because He led me to the godly woman who would also be my wellness coach to deal with all the mental/spiritual mess I was in that led to my morbid obesity in the first place. ALL because He wanted to SET ME FREE from my mental and physical food addictions. ALL because he wanted to strip away the WASTE I had made of my life, and make me NEW. Again. 🙂
He is GOOD.
I haven’t quite gotten back into the groove of blogging, as you can see – Most of my updates are in short bursts via Twitter, because it’s much like “bullet pointing” and I like the challenge of forcing my thoughts into a SUCCINCT format – being an otherwise naturally VERBOSE person … *coughcough*
So I will share a couple of my latest tweets, again, here, but with a LITTLE bit of commentary attached:
- Ur spouse is not ur be all & end all; u SHARE life, u BUILD life together. Nurture ur own gifts/interests so u HAVE something 2share!
- Better the couple who MISS each other from time2time than the couple who is bored with – or worse, loathe each other. Hv strong friendships.
- Each spouse shd hv their own friends, but they must “keep the foxes out of the vineyard.” Agree on boundaries w/others “outside” &KEEP them.
It is so tempting to view your “significant other” as the WHOLE of your existence – we want to get lost in the other person, we want to set our lives in orbit around them, and love songs since forever have praised these passions as though they are the hallmark of true love. I do actually beg to differ – in fact, I suspect the ferocity of my emotion might just mean I’m making you the object of my obsession, of my “worship,” putting you in the place of expecting you to meet all my emotional needs, etc. These expectations unchecked will DESTROY the very person meant to be Beloved!
In the blaze of any given moment, these depths of emotion can be INTOXICATING, oh I know! When you love the other person SO intensely that you want to feel every fiber of their being wrapped up in your own; like there is no way you can physically be close enough, so you press into each other, you want to spend every waking minute with each other – to the falling away of all other life responsibilities and interests and tasks, etc. May I humbly suggest – there is a point at which you can make the other person almost like your drug-of-choice; you want to feel those emotions all the time .. to the despising of all other kinds of “emotions” or life pursuits.
Sometimes distance will separate, sometimes life responsibilities will require your focus, sometimes your Beloved WILL “fail” to “meet your needs” and you will fail to meet his/hers. None of these things need derail the confidence of love’s genuineness. Recent circumstances in my world have caused me to revisit this truth – If we are each about our own “business” – if we are each being faithful with God’s calling on our lives, in any given moment, it is not inconceivable that we will have seasons where we are kept from being with each other as we would like. This need not be a death knell to the relationship – MISSING one another, LONGING for one another – it’s an opportunity to reevaluate whether our affections and expectations have gotten jostled out of balance, and to ask myself “Am I seeking more to be ‘served’ than to ‘serve’? to BE ‘loved’ more than to ‘love’?”
“But he’s not meeting my emotional needs! He doesn’t love me anymore! He doesn’t love me enough! IF he loved me, he’d … [fill in the blank] …”
Oh, sweetheart, if you feel greater NEED to be loved, that’s often when you most need to reach out and SHOW love. Call a friend you haven’t seen in a while. Sign up to sing with the church worship team this month. Work in the nursery. Pick up a project you’ve been neglecting for the past few months. Ask your Beloved how you can encourage and help him/her, see if there is something you can do to meet HIS/HER “emotional need” and do so without the expectation of reciprocation.
And when you feel heartsick over missing him, remind yourself – It truly IS better to be missing one another, because you haven’t been able to spend the time with one another that you wish, than to otherwise resent one another for being too [emotionally] demanding, or to be bored with one another because you don’t each have your own life tasks and friendships to SHARE with one another when you come together once again.
.. and I’ll be a fly on my own wall. ❤
read this quote, today: “Most of the teaching on love in the church centers on loving God or other people. Very little of it talks about loving ourselves. We have been taught how to subjugate ourselves, but not how to love ourselves without being selfish. Loving ourselves out of our soul is selfish; loving ourselves because of what God has done in our spirit is beautiful. Some of us have never learned that distinction.” ~Graham Cooke
I responded thusly: “I see what you’re trying to get at, here, but I humbly beg to differ because of these things, biblically speaking: a) Jesus did *not* command us to “love ourselves” as that was already presumed, and is more often talked about in Scripture as the root of our PROBLEM, namely that we love/seek-after ourselves too much, b) this idea of “loving” ourselves IS taught very MUCH in the modern church (it’s not a “neglected doctrine”!), though I’ll grant that no distinction is often made with regard to what you describe as “loving ourselves because of what God has done in our spirit,” BUT I daresay, c) this “distinction” – while attempting to hit on a real truth, is nevertheless a false distinction, because the truth is that when we LOVE GOD for who he is and what he has done in spite of the fact we are “unlovable” in our fallen state (while we were yet his enemies), the FRUIT of this loving God *does* produce a supernatural ability in us to NOT LOATHE ourselves, because of grace. But “not loathing” (or let’s call this “accepting” ourselves BECAUSE of the work God has done to redeem, and HE has MADE us acceptable) is NOT the same thing as “loving” ourselves, but instead we are commanded to DIE to ourselves, and I think THIS is in fact the distinction that most of the modern church is missing…..”
see the so-called “proof” text for the presumed command to “love” ourselves, but the command is NOT to love self, but to love OTHERS:
Amplified Bible (AMP)
Amplified Bible (AMP)
Romans 12:3, 9-10
Amplified Bible (AMP)
Dear friends, let us love ONE ANOTHER as Christ commands and as HE enables by the power of his Holy Spirit. Let us love in the way HE has loved us, and as the FRUIT of our loving HIM first with all our hearts, souls, minds and strength!
God help us be discerning, and help us truly “die” to ourselves in keeping with the Gospel of your grace, NOT that we loathe ourselves for sin, because that also denies your GRACE, and the fact you have RESCUED us from ourselves!, but rather that we simply have our gaze so fixed on YOU! (Heb. 12:1-3) that our ability to look our ourselves too long – whether for love or hate or anything in between – would grow strangely dim in the light of your glory and grace!
Two Unrelated Topics??
Well, a conversation with a friend about “speaking in tongues” has naturally progressed into a discussion on biblical masculinity and femininity because of “headship” and “submission” ~ I did not predict this course! haha! (if you’re interested, check out 1 corinthians 11-14, romans 12, jude 1, 1 timothy 2-3, 1 peter 3, genesis 2-3, ephesians 4-5 ~ all of which are making appearance in this discussion. see if you can spot the connections in these two topics?)
aka #ilovethedeependofthepool ♥
Here’s a link to ALL of the above texts in one spot for your convenience 😉
I LOVE HOW SCRIPTURE calls out Sarah (wife of Abraham, mother of Isaac) as a “holy” woman who *adorned* (dressed/clothed) herself with submission (grace/humility/yieldedness). She is held up as the example of a woman with a quiet and gentle spirit, trusting GOD more than her husband time after time, a woman who “by faith, received strength” for the miraculous to be made manifest in her life precisely because “she judged Him faithful who had promised.” Neither “walking by faith” nor “submission” have been great hallmarks of my own life ~ I feel I am just now walking (toddling!) where I have only till now “crawled.” But I truly *aspire* to be more like Sarah in the above, and in that God gave her a NEW name, and blessed her because of HIS good pleasure. ♥ ♥ ♥
(see 1 Peter 3, Hebrews 11, and Genesis 17)
I LOVE HOW SCRIPTURE says of Mary (mother of Jesus), and the miraculous that had entered her life, that “she treasured up all these things and pondered them in her heart.” I have far more often been the “wear your heart on your sleeve” type gal. But I truly *aspire* to be more like Mary both in the above, and in her prayer concerning the Word of God, “I am the Lord’s servant; may it be to me as you have said.” ♥ ♥ ♥
(see the Gospel of Luke, chapters 1-2)