Five Steps to Soul Shifting

So, I have gained all the weight that I lost.  Granted, it wasn’t much to start with, but it’s all back.  Every single last gram of it.  Last night, I felt a bit anxious about a situation coming up, so what did I do?  I ate.  And ate.  And ate.  Going to God with my silly anxiety only occurred to me afterwards.  It’s the devil’s lie: making us forget that we are actually God’s, we belong to Him, and He will comfort us and so we look for comfort in every and anything else.

The idea that I can lose weight without changing my thinking is preposterous.  I can, for a while, lose some weight but if my underlying thinking is that I need food for comfort, I will always go back to food for comfort: resulting in weight gain.  Again.

I have spent years harvesting the thoughts of being too skinny and needing to eat and fearing I was anorexic when I wasn’t and now I am reaping the result of years of wrong thinking.  I had no idea.  My parents – okay, more my mother – drummed it into my head that I was too skinny, I may be anorexic, and that I would choke and die.  And I believed her.  She had no intention to harm me, and she wasn’t lying – she was just operating from her own false sense of need.  But, what that has done is that I am now operating from that belief system: that I need to eat.  So, what do I do when I feel anxious or lonely or sad or bored – I eat.

It doesn’t do anyone any good to diet, lose weight, look amazing if you haven’t challenged your underlying belief system.  Because, quite simply, you’ll just put that weight back on.  And that is why I need a soul shift.  And flip, is it hard.  I have spent 36 years believing a lie, and now for the last four or five years been challenging that lie, but I still resort back to needing to eat (i.e. believing the lie) whenever something crops up that I feel uncomfortable with.

So, I still have a long way to go…

And I’m not quite sure how to get this soul shift, but on deeper reflection, I think that the first step is to make sure what you’re believing is true.  If I had challenged my mother’s wrong thinking initially – had I been old enough – I would not be sitting in this situation today.  If you’re not sure – go to the Bible.  The Bible is full of truth – like, whether I am fat or skinny or somewhere in between – God still loves me, I am still fearfully and wonderfully made, God dances over me in delight, my body is a temple of the Holy Spirit…

No one who truly is looking after their bodies in God’s truth and love will allow themselves to get anorexic or gain excess weight to the point of being unhealthy.  All I really needed to do, was to trust God.  It is all I still really need to do!

Then, I think that the second step is to teach yourself to operate from a position of love, not from fear.  Any time I am overeating to comfort, I am eating from a position of fear.  It doesn’t matter what I am eating; if I am eating out of fear, then I am not eating with the right motives in mind.

The next step then is to challenge the lie.  Every time the lie crops up in my head, I need to remember to challenge that lie.  If I even entertain it for a second, then I am allowing a part of me to still believe it as being true – a “what if” it could be true, when it quite simply isn’t.  And this is the part I am battling with – the constant challenging of the lie.  I wish you could challenge the lie once and then be done with it.  But, sometimes you have to challenge the lie – and replace it with the truth (step 4) – a myriad of times during the day.

But, the final step, I believe is the most important.  You cannot do this alone.  And by alone I’m not referring to Weight Watchers or anything like that – I am referring to being in Christ.  He is the vine and we’re the branches, without Him we can do nothing.  You need His strength to do all things, even eating healthily.

  1. Make sure what you’re believing is true.
  2. Learn to operate your life from a position of love, not fear.
  3. Challenge the lie.
  4. Replace the lie with the truth.
  5. Remain in Christ.

Ephesians 4:22-24 New International Version (NIV):  22 You were taught, with regard to your former way of life, to put off your old self, which is being corrupted by its deceitful desires; 23 to be made new in the attitude of your minds; 24 and to put on the new self, created to be like God in true righteousness and holiness.

Changing my mind

Well, I have lost some weight.

And as I’ve gotten on the scale to see, the whole fear and old haunting voices have come out to challenge me:

You're no good!
You'll never succeed!
What if everyone sees the real you - 
what will you hide behind then???
What if you get so skinny, you get sick and die?
What if I choke and get so skinny - and die?

Yes, these are the thoughts running through my head.  And I have become painfully aware of my power.  My power to choose.  To choose to believe the lies.  Or to reject the lies and search for the truth.  And what is the truth?

The truth is that I can step out into the sun, I can feel the gentle breeze on my face.  I can break down the walls I’ve been hiding behind my entire life.  In Jesus, I am safe, loved and accepted.  I can embrace my husband and my life as blessings from God.  I can embrace God who loves me completely.  I can trust in who God created me to be.  I can trust God will always guide me saying, “Here is the path.”  I can trust God has created me fearfully and wonderfully.  I will NOT give up.  I will reap the harvest of blessing if I do NOT give up.

So, as tempted as it is to follow the well-worn paths in my brain to believing the lies, and falling down the well again, I can choose to believe the truth.  This time, I am focusing on God’s word, His truth and His unending love for me.