Friday, August 19, 2011

Letting Go of Guilt

Guilt is very dangerous and very helpful all at the same time. When we do something that is not right our conscience is pricked and we fill remorse for what we do. That is when feelings of guilt are positive. These positive feelings of guilt help us recognize that we have made a mistake or that we are veering from the course, and they cause us to want to correct our faulty behavior.

However, guilt turns deadly spiritually and emotionally when we defeat ourselves with it. When we experience guilt for falling into the same old trap again, and do nothing positive to change. Sometimes we even participate in more of the negative behaviors because it makes us feel better at the time on some levels.

Today’s Step to a Healthier Me, is focusing on the dangers of guilt and not being forgiving towards MYSELF. We will leave the discussion about forgiving others for another time.

Today our Bible lesson to focus on will be from Luke 5:19-21

19And when they could not find by what way they might bring him in because of the multitude, they went upon the housetop, and let him down through the tiling with his couch into the midst before Jesus.

20And when he saw their faith, he (Jesus) said unto him, Man, thy sins are forgiven thee.

21And the scribes and the Pharisees began to reason, saying, Who is this which speaketh blasphemies? Who can forgive sins, but God alone?

This lesson from the Bible was about the paralyzed man, and the great faith he, and the faith the men who lowered him through the roof top had, so that he could see Jesus to be healed. This roof top most likely was not just a pile of straw that was easy to break through. I would have required great effort to dismantle and open a whole big enough to be able to lower the man down. Yet they did what was necessary to accomplish their mission.

Notice what Jesus did in verse 20. He saw their faith. When you are trying to make changes in your life whether they are spiritual or physical changes do you have faith? Do you have faith in God to help you? Do you believe Matthew 7:7-8?

7Ask, and it shall be given you; seek, and ye shall find; knock, and it shall be opened unto you:

8For every one that asketh receiveth; and he that seeketh findeth; and to him that knocketh it shall be opened.

We must be faithful. When we seek God via prayer for assistance with our petitions, or desires, our most secret dreams, which we sometimes don’t even want to acknowledge to ourselves, we MUST believe that He will help us. God is powerful. He loves us. He wants us to be happy and healthy. He wants us to be successful.

Yet, does our faith get bogged down when we keep dumping guilt down on ourselves for our past failures? Can we achieve the kind of faith that would lead us to tear any barrier down to reach our goal so the Lord can see our faith shining through? Or do we let our successes get u bogged down under an empty pizza box, or entire party sized package of M&M’s when we stumble along our path to a healthier eating lifestyle?

I have to forgive myself for my past failures so I can move on to success today, and tomorrow. I have to have faith in God’s promises. When I pray to Him and ask His help with my health and spiritual goals, ones I know that are in alignment with what the Bible says is His will for me, then I have to believe that He will give me the strength and the tools I need to succeed! If I don’t believe, then my faith is weak.

Notice the second part of our Saviour’s actions in verse 20. “Thy sins are forgiven thee.” We must repent of gluttony if we are guilty of it. If we refuse to eat enough to care for our bodies properly, then we must repent of harming the bodily temple God gave us in this manner too. Whatever, your poison, drugs, alcohol, food, pornography, etc, etc., in order to receive forgiveness we must repent. Repentance means to change, to turn from that sin. When we ask for forgiveness with a truly repentant heart and a heart full of faith in His promises we must believe in those promises.

Ask yourself right now these questions.

1.       Have you truly repented of your unhealthy food behaviors?

2.       If yes, have your forgiven yourself?

3.       If no, then why have you not forgiven yourself? After all God forgave you, and wiped it away forever! Let it GO. Learn from it, and let it GO.

Today was a heavy day for me on my weight loss journey. I took a BIG STEP. I am going to share my numbers with you. They are sad, and they are SCARY from a health perspective. But, I want to share my journey with you fully, in hopes that any success or failure even, can help you reach your health goals.

I have been reading a book I bought at least 2 years ago. The name of the book is The Cognitive Behavioral Workbook for Weight Management. (Again, I am NOT buying any new material. I am pulling from my past purchases and free sources on this budget friendly Healthier Me journey!) Apparently, at some time in the past, it did sink into my brain enough for me to know that I need to work with the Cognitive side of my brain. Cognitive means the processes of perception, memory, judgment, and reasoning. Or in SIMPLE terms, I grasped years ago that I had to change how I THINK!

So, I have been undergoing a journey about what makes me tick. And, the emotional side is not so pretty at times and I am still focusing on that side in my private time at this point.

But, I am going to share with you the physical side of my Healthier Steps journey today. I got in touch with my numbers. As of August 16, 2011 my weight is 309 pounds. I discovered today that I am off the charts and not in a good way! I fall into the Extremely Obese category with a Body Mass Index of 49.86% (I like that number better that rounding my BMI up to 50%).

When I looked online for other sources, I found that I was beyond what we have heard called Morbid Obesity and fall in the class of Super Obesity. WOW! Can you say tough to hear!

But, the numbers didn’t stop there. This work book encouraged me to measure my waist line. The number is quite sad, 55 inches. This puts me in a category of substantially increased risk for problems in the following areas: Blood Pressure; Lipid Profile: Cholesterol/Triglycerides/HDL/LDL cholesterol; Fasting Blood Sugar; Sleep Apnea; Nutritional deficiencies: B12, Folate, Calcium, & Magnesium; Thyroid Status, Depression, Anxiety, Binge-Eating disorder; Gynecological issues. I took the liberty of highlighting some things I have already had problems with in the past, and if I still struggle with them today they are underlined as well.

If you want to figure out your BMI you can do so by using this website:

Folks, I am laying it out there. I need to work on getting this issue with unhealthy diet and poor exercise and get it under control. As they like to say at Overeaters Anonymous, “I have to trust my Higher Power.” Well, that Higher Power is God Almighty, and if HE is on my side, then I can beat this.

I want to leave you on a positive note. I also got to a number that is obtainable and that I have already made progress towards since August 16, 2011. (Yes, I am saying that the scales are already slowly tipping downward on my journey!!!) I set a REALISTIC weight loss goal. I did not look at my ideal body weight based on my height. I figured 5-10% of my current weight, which for me is 15.45 to 30.90 pounds. I am shooting for a minimum of 3 pounds per week, with a 10 week deadline for the 31 pounds.

I am also going to be ASKING for God to help me, and I am going to have FAITH that He will give me all I need to be successful. I hope you do the same for your weight loss goals.

Stay tuned to my progress, please keep encouraging me, and may your successes be greater than my own! I will be traveling with work for a few days so I may not be able to check in with you all. I hope my in box, and comment section is overflowing with motivational tidbits from you when I get back in town. My next blog will probably have something to do with the difficulties of eating healthy and getting exercise while on the road!

If I spoke with you on the phone, via email, comments left, or private messages yesterday I want to say thank you for all the wonderful encouragement. It means a lot! AND, I have to add that the comments, questions, and words of support from people who feel like I do made me see that we need each other...people with similar struggles doing the samethings to become successful. Which leads me to a thought about the wisdom of God. Who does He encourage us to hang out with more, worldly people or Christians. Which then makes me think along these lines: like begats like, run with the dogs you'll smell like the dogs, hang out with motivated people you get motivated!

One last thought. I have to have a little faith in myself too. Even with my past failures at weight loss, or keeping weight loss off, I am not at a hopeless point yet. It is when I give up and stop trying that failure is accomplished. All I have to have is just a small amount of as a mustard seed can move mountains.

May your Steps to a Healthier Me bring your closer to God above in the spirit, and to better health in the body! Love and hugs to you all! Leah.

1 comment:

  1. We must be sharing brainwaves ;)
    Last night as I was falling asleep I found myself thinking back to all the examples in scripture where Jesus said "Your faith has healed you." He is the Great Phsyician for body, mind and soul! :)
    You are spot on...Why have I left God out of my health goals? Guilt -- The way I have mistreated His temple and all the negative self-talk going on. Going to work on forgiving myself and seeking His mercies as well! Thanks for such a powerful post!