Monday, March 3, 2014

Made to Crave Study, Chapter 18: Things Lost, Better Things Gained

Continuing with the Made to Crave Bible Study hosted by Proverbs 31 Ministries, Chapter 18 discusses the fact that we have to come to grips with the fact that we will have to say "no" to some foods forever. Lysa says that is "part courageous sacrifice and part utter repentance," and though those words can speak of hardship, they can also speak of victory. "But victory won't stay for long if I start resisting and disliking her essential requirements of sacrifice and repentance."

Being at one's goal weight can be dangerous, partly because we want to celebrate and may be tempted to do that with food, partly because we can be tempted to let up on our watchfulness and carefulness. 

Studies have shown that some junk foods are indeed addictive and require more for the same amount of pleasure, so sometimes a little compromise can trigger a major reversal.

"It's really difficult for a chips-and-chocolate girl to uninvite foods to her party that have been regulars for years. And it's even more difficult to reconcile that they aren't my friends. Some can be casual acquaintances on a very limited level, but others need to be banished for good" (emphasis mine).

Lysa brings up I Cor. 6:12 again, "All things are lawful unto me, but all things are not expedient: all things are lawful for me, but I will not be brought under the power of any." The very next verse says, "Meats for the belly, and the belly for meats: but God shall destroy both it and them."

"Food is not the enemy here. Satan is the enemy. And his stategic plan is to render us ineffective or at least sluggish for the cause of Christ. When we're defeated and stuck in issues of the flesh, it's really hard to fully and passionately follow hard after God. So, lest we start mourning what will be lost, we must celebrate all that's being gained in this process."

"No food will ever taste as sweet as victory does."

Lysa describes tossing away something and says, "This isn't a sign that I am being deprived. This isn't a trigger for me to pout and say it's not fair. This is a sacrifice I am willing to make in order to gain something so much greater than he rest of this biscuit. This is the most empowering thing I can do in this moment!"

"We can't have the mind-set of this being a hard, impossible sacrifice. Focusing only on what we're giving up will make us feel constantly deprived. And deprivation leads to desperation, frustration, and failure. Instead, we have to focus on everything we're gaining though this process and see the gains as more valuable than the losses."

Then Lysa deals with the issue of repentance, for all of the past times we have chosen wrongly and craved food more than God. Instead of "beating ourselves up" with our failures, we can hand them to Him and seek grace, forgiveness, and the power to carry on.

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