Friday, October 10, 2014

The Battle

We all know about David and Goliath, but did you know that Goliath had a brother?   And there really was a man with six fingers and six toes.  David's mighty men came face to face with these lesser known giants and defeated them.  (1 Chron. 20:4-8)

Likewise, we all have something with which we struggle, our own personal giants, but not everyone's is the same.  Yours might be cancer or diabetes, autism or depression.  It might even be a personality trait such as shyness or anger.  I have some dear friends, mighty warriors, who are fighting hard at their battles, which encourages me in mine.

Last spring God brought me face to face with a giant of my own, that is, my weight.  For years I've known that I needed to make some changes, but our culture's obsession with skinny caused me to resist diets and the 'starve-yourself-to-fit-a-certain-image' mentality.  Hollywood has set an airbrushed expectation which cannot realistically be met.

That was just one excuse.  I had many others.  Genetics, giving birth to four children, and growing older were among them.  But God was telling me plain and simple that if I was to overcome in this area, I must first take full responsibility for my condition.  I had to stop making excuses.

Yet still, I wondered, where is the power to overcome?   My brain might know what to do but that does nothing for my motivation.  I still desire to eat the wrong foods, eat excessively, or sit on the couch.  Knowledge does not necessarily produce change.  I've been there, done that. 

At the time, I was reading from the life of Joshua where he gave the children of Israel a charge, "Choose you this day, whom you will serve," and it clicked.  (Josh. 24:15) That was my ticket to power.   I did not have to worry about next week, next month, or even next year.  All I need do was choose life for this day.  Those daily, seemingly insignificant decisions, matter.  Real living is encased in making the right choice.  Rather than restricting my freedom, these choices actually set me free.  It was empowering.  I did not have to be a slave to my own desires.

God also brought me to passages in Hebrews which speak of the suffering of Christ. (Heb.2:10-11, 17-18; 4:15; 5:7-8)  Even Jesus, by dying, chose the path of life.  And if the victory Jesus secured required denying Himself, should not mine as well?   He calls us to "take up our cross and follow Him." (Lk. 9:23)  This is a daily discipline. 

We are created to live in righteousness.  Surrender to God's terms is not only pleasing to God, but is also where I find true joy.  It is the best place for me. 

Through the Lord's enabling, I have lost 40 lbs.  I tell you this with great fear and trepidation because my journey is not yet over.  I have 5 more to lose and these last pounds are the hardest yet.  Furthermore, I know my own weakness.  How easy it is to compromise and regress right back to where I started.  Only by the grace of God am I where I am today. My faith does not rest in a particular diet or exercise plan, but in His strength which continues to sustain me each day.  It is Christ who gives me the power to remain on this path of life.

Before (Fall 2013)

After  (Fall 2014)

After  (Fall 2014)
However, surrender to the Lord does not mean that I do nothing.  The consistent, tenacious fighting is my surrender.  I see this scattered all through the Scriptures.  The sword of the Lord and Gideon.  God brought down the walls of Jericho, but Joshua and the people expended themselves in obedient marching.  God brought down Goliath, but David stepped boldly into battle having spent years in the pasture, honing his skill with a sling shot.  I could give countless other examples.

I have a part in this equation, and that is to fight with all my might.  Yet, at times I have fought aimlessly, and so I'm learning that it is important to educate myself in order to fight smarter.  My metabolism is not the same as it was at 20 years of age, 30, or dare I say it, even 40.  I have to fight differently than I did then in order to fit this season of my life.  For that reason, my next post will be about the tools God is using to help me in this fight. 


  1. Congratulations! It IS hard work and God honored your fighting. (, you look 10 years younger. At least.)