In this installment of Faithful Fridays, I want to acknowledge what inspired me to write my previous post on overcoming bulimia and insecurities, and what gave me the angle and perspective to tackle it from: Lysa TerKeurst’s 21-day devotional, Made to Crave.
The devotional follows Lysa’s own weight-loss journey – which turned out to be more than just about weight loss. I have decided to follow this devotional, because I was so tired of being a slave to food: when something good happens, I celebrate with food. When I’m feeling bad, I turn to food (specially of the sweet kind). When I’m bored, I turn to food. It was a lot like taking Psalm 23, and turning all references to God with “food”.
If you are looking for a ~biblical diet plan~, this is not it. However, Made to Crave highlights as to how we truly are wired to desire and to crave, except that it should be pointed at the right direction: God. Food is functional: for nourishment, for celebration. “Comfort food” is, to me, something that aids in summoning thoughts of comfort – like a hot bowl of sinigang for lunch in the middle of a stressful work day would give me thoughts of home. However, I have turned to food as my comforter, which is a different thing! Junk food, sweets, and overall excessive eating has become my crutch!
Lysa, through scripture and personal anecdotes, aims to help the Christian woman dig into her own experiences and struggles, and shows that indeed, even something as stubborn as weight loss or getting into the discipline of honoring God through our bodies is something achievable – possible, with God. I realized that any outward hunger that I experience – and not just over food, mind – is but a manifestation of a deeper hunger: the need for security, for assurance of provision, for a source of comfort.
I would like to thank Mrs. TerKeurst for sharing her struggles, and I thank God for working in and through her life to bless someone like me. Made to Crave helped me realize that I was not just struggling with ~diets~ or ~lifestyle changes~, but with decades-old wounds that lead to me making food into my drug.
And with that, I am also further encouraged to write. I know that my readership may not be as big, but if Mrs. TerKeurst had not written about her struggle, then I would not have been able to realize God’s work in my life and share it with others.
I did not realize that Tuesday’s post would get the attention that it got, and for that, I am extremely grateful. It goes to show that indeed, God makes beauty out of ashes. I have received not just words of love and encouragement, but messages telling me that what I have written have encouraged them as well.
I also cannot keep this story to myself – not when it has become a testimony as to how God changes lives. It was a leap of faith to share my battle with insecurity and bulimia. I am more open to share about my past – and wrong – relationships. The post was also supposed to have been just about me dealing about my getting older, but I realized that I could not write about overcoming insecurities about aging without tackling something that runs deeper.
I felt that I just needed to keep on writing and get that story out there – because I know that I am not alone in my struggle. Women like me, from a very young age, have been conditioned to feel awful for how they look. We are told to base our identities on something as fleeting as these mortal bodies, on money, on what we can buy and how much we own, on what food we have on our plates, on whose arm we are attached to…
But I have learned that I can secure my identity on something – Someone – mighty; the unlimited source of love, grace, forgiveness, mercy, and beauty; and that Someone with a love so deep that if I were the only human left in this world, He would still come and die for me: Jesus.
Now: I am a firm believer that God is the ultimate healer, and it follows that He also equips and sends people with the heart, knowledge, and expertise to help others out. Eating disorders are no laughing matter and they are deadly. I cannot stress this enough. If you are struggling with an eating disorder, if you are experiencing anxiety and insecurity, please talk to someone and seek help from specialists.