In chapter six Lysa teaches that self-control is a fruit of the Spirit and we grow closer to God when we exercise it. In other words by denying myself cappuccino (and a yummy cup of sugar and cream with some coffee is not a sin, mind you) I can grow closer to God because I have denied myself, took up my cross and followed Christ right out of Starbucks. The old Catholic girl in me is ready to get all legalistic and bring out the rules and my rosary (made from actual rose petals). Well, not really…legalistic Christanity leads down a road I do not plan to EVER travel again.
We are called holy. Being holy is to be set apart. When I think of what it means to be holy I think of Daniel. You remember Daniel…he was thrown into a furnace and to the lions…there is an entire book about him in the Bible. He chose to keep himself holy by keeping the dietary laws. Now, I am not about to start a Jewish diet. I like the part in the New Testament when God tells Peter that BBQ ribs are good to eat…maybe not in so many words but you get the point. On the other hand, stuffing my face until I am so full that my pants are uncomfortable isn’t all that holy.
The Holy Spirit dwells within me. I am not only a creation of God’s but now His child. I am holy. I think I really need to let this sink in. Daniel was a young teenager and he understood what it meant to be holy. I’ve spent most of my life treating myself like a garbage can. I had my reasons and the Lord pointed much of that out to me during the first part of this study. He went through too much for me and the least I could do is honor His decision and treat myself as someone holy. Holy people do not eat a bag of ranch Doritos in one sitting. Maybe holy people do not eat them at all…I don’t know. There is a connection in how we treat ourselves and how we relate to God. I do not fully understand this whole mind, body, spirit connection…but it is true.
I may not be a very beautiful woman by the standards of the culture I live in. I do not have awesome abs or a fantastic waistline. God made me just the way He wanted me. He gave me a body able to bear four healthy children. How many women would give everything to bear just one child? In Christ I have everything. I only need to abide with Him in every moment and gratefully care for everything He has placed in my care…my husband, my children, my friends, my little world…and this body that I have taken for granted and judged ugly.
Practically, I am not sure about what diet plan to follow and all that. I am going to concentrate on small changes, healthier changes. Do my best to get some exercise each day and make better food choices. Small changes work, there is even a book called The Tipping Point that discusses this point. If I decide to follow a certain diet I’ll share the what and why, but right now I need to discern…listen to the direction of the Holy spirit.