I have struggled with my weight for as long as I can remember. Even when I was at my healthiest, and by medical standards, at a perfect weight/height ratio, I was absolutely CONVINCED I needed to lose more weight. I was still not as thin as other girls around me and in my mind, I had decided that I wasn’t good enough.
Even as a child of 7 years I can remember off hand remarks from fellow classmates that I ate too much and if I just tried I could be skinnier. Seriously… I was a child. And SERIOUSLY – I was a small child. No chubs on this little girl.
But I remember these moments. From a young age, I was told that I wasn’t good enough and that I needed to be more petite. There was no truth in my mind at such a young age that God made everyone different, that bone structures vary or that as your body grows, you grow into your own skin that was so perfectly designed by God.
Perhaps these ideas do stem from and fester in our hearts due to the society we live in. Either way, I know that Satan is behind every single one of these lies.
As the New Year has come and “resolutions” are being tossed this way and that, I have been overwhelmed and anxious once again by the dreaded word “weight loss.” This is my constant battle. Even when I had no need to battle this demon I did.
Now, as I take on my role as a mom, I am filled with more guilt and shame than ever. Pregnancy was hard for me and I gained more weight than I am proud to admit. I was sick almost constantly with Lillian and if I ever let my stomach go hungry I would begin vomiting with a vengeance. I was tired and uncomfortable and I dreaded the inevitable throwing up over and over. So I would snack constantly to avoid it. Unfortunately, I didn’t gravitate towards the healthy snacks and no, I didn’t freaking crave carrots so all you perfect, healthy, pregnant people who talk about how they craved veggies can shove it! And working out? Yea… that didn’t happen that often either because I was drained from all energy heaving into the toilet bowl.
Pregnancy stretched my skin to the max, forcing vibrant red stretch marks on my stomach and hips. Heartburn attacked my stomach and ripped through my chest like a fire-breathing dragon.
But I was content in spirit knowing that my baby was alive and healthy – growing more every day. I would take the pain and vomiting and discomfort and ignore everything else because, after the miscarriage, I would do just about anything to have a healthy baby in my arms.
Lillian came as beautiful and precious as ever. She was so worth it AND pregnancy was finally over! Thank goodness!
But as time flew by my weight simply hung on. My body didn’t bounce back like some women’s. I had little motivation or energy to work at it. So when I looked in the mirror I was embarrassed.
It’s been over a year since Lillian was born and I still feel this way. Even though my stretch marks begin to fade, I realize they will never be completely gone. Even though I’ve lost a little weight, it’s still not as much as I need to lose. That extra skin around my belly feels like an anchor and the daunting task of losing weight feels so impossible and out of reach, I have basically given up.
But as I sat on my couch this week reading my Bible Study I had a moment of enlightenment. The Lord opened my eyes to a truth I already knew but did not apply to this particular circumstance.
Satan is deceiving you. ANYTHING is possible with God.
The devil is the ultimate deceiver and he is never NOT messing with your head.
If you struggle with weight loss, you better believe that the devil is going to use that weakness against you! He wants to thwart you on the path God has for you and he will do it in whatever way possible.
Do not be deceived.
As you struggle in your heart and mind with your body image, your desire to lose weight and improve your health – do not believe the lies of Satan telling you it’s not possible. It’s too hard. It will never happen. You can’t do it. You had better just learn to be content with your unhappiness regarding your body. Satan, get behind me!
What terrible lies! No problem is unsolvable. No weight is un-losable. The devil wants to drag us to a place of defeat and hopelessness and leave us in a cloud of guilt and depression and misery. For if your mind and heart are clouded with lies, how will you be able to hear God tell you where to go or what He wants for you?
This is his plan. When you are focused only on the displeasure you feel regarding your body and weight, you forget that you are loved and capable of being used by God. AND, you forget that with God you CAN accomplish anything.
In the book ‘Anxious for Nothing,’ Max Lucado says, “Satan is the master of deceit. But he is not the master of your mind. You have a power he cannot defeat. You have God on your side.” When I believe the devil’s lies, I give up. I convince myself that it’s impossible. So I go ahead and eat a cookie and wallow in discontent. But I have forgotten that God is on my side and that the deceiver is simply feeding me these thoughts.
Take Your Thoughts Captive
You CAN lose weight. With God, all things are possible (Matt. 19:26) and that includes your weight loss journey. With His encouragement and His hands before you, behind you and on you, how could you fail?
“…take every thought captive to make it obedient to God.” 2 Corinthians 10:5
When thoughts of hopelessness trickle into your mind, take those thoughts captive and bring them to the Lord. Are these thoughts from God or is the devil trying to deceive me?
Yes, it’s going to be tough. It’s going to require you to work hard. You will have to fight temptations, train your body, and learn self-control. So you must “fix your thoughts on what is true, and honorable, and right, and pure, and lovely, and admirable. Think about things that are excellent and worthy of praise.” Philippians 4:8
Maybe you feel you can’t do it. And maybe you’re right. But God CAN. Trust in the fact that the Almighty God loves you and wants you to be happy. He wants you to be healthy and content with the body HE created so you can better share His word.
These are the truths I know. These are the truths I am repeating to myself every day.
I will start my day with prayer and truth, asking for God’s help each day, knowing that I can lose the weight with Him beside me. Holding my hand and guiding me each step of the way. I know there will be times I mess up and get discouraged. But overweight or skinny as a rail, I can be happy and content knowing that I am exactly where God wants me, with an open and willing heart ready to serve Him in whatever way He desires.
Yes, there are certain areas of my body that will never be the same after having babies.
But stretch marks and a little extra skin are the evidence of a miracle. A little extra weight does not define you.
I know that I want to be a mom that plays with my children without hindrance or pain. I know that I want to have more babies. I know that I want to go where God calls without being worried I won’t be able to keep up. I know that I want to be as healthy as I can be for my family. I know that I want to be a good example for my own daughter as she goes out into a world filled with body shaming bullies.
We are made beautiful because of Jesus.
If you are in a good place and feel content with whom you are – Praise the Lord! I pray for continued protection over your heart and mind.
If you are living with the lies of the devil, believing you cannot succeed, I pray that you use God’s truth to destroy and blow away every sliver of deceit that Satan has planted in your mind.
God IS capable. You CAN do it. He will help you.
Rest in Him.
You are not alone.
“Your challenge is not your challenge. Your challenge is the way you think about your challenge. Your problem is not your problem; it is the way you look at it.” –Max Lucado
“Be careful what you think, because your thoughts run your life.” Proverbs 4:23
I have been listening to the devil’s lies for too long. But this week my thought pattern has shifted. I have a sense of peace knowing this area of my life rests in God’s hands. I will no longer believe the lie that I can’t lose the baby weight and extra pounds so I might as well give up.
If you have stuck with me through this whole post, I hope that as this year progresses you will encourage me not to give up and to keep working towards my goal. I know there will be times I will feel tired and discouraged. And if you are reading this and struggling with similar issues, let me know so I can encourage and pray for you as well.
(Looking for a quick and efficient workout, check out Shiree’s weekly workout plan HERE)