Sunday, September 6, 2015

To My Sisters with Eating Disorders, and Those Who Have Considered

I saw a picture recently. She was a young woman I did not know, too thin. From a heart knowledge, I knew...she had it. Or rather, it had her. ED, the shameless thief of freedom. And I wept for this young woman whom I had never met, a friend of a friend. I wanted to hold her hand and rub her back and hear her story and tell her so many things. Things of the King.

Is she you, or could she be? Dear Sister, do you suspect that you are shackled, held at gunpoint day after arduous day? And perhaps, are you the keeper of that gun? Do you sway from desperation-to-escape to refusing-there's-a-problem-at-all?

May I offer some suggestions? Will you hear some things the King has taught me?

Heed this advice, and listen to His voice for more. And as I speak very honestly, please know this comes from a heart of "I've been there" and "I love you." The Holy Spirit has said and still says these things to me today.

  • Stop lying to yourself.
    The gig is up. You must admit it, or you will not get better. The Father already knows. Chances are, everyone else already knows. You have to stop lying to yourself, and trust that voice within your heart that so desperately wants you to live.
    I know -- sometimes you look in the mirror and you don't see what they see. Who are they to tell you that you're too skinny? What?! Look at this girl, and that woman, and this celebrity. You feel like you have more fat on your wrist than others do on their entire body.
    But girl, you have body dysmorphia. You can't see yourself for what you really are. More than likely, you are drastically more thin than you can see. Furthermore, if you are starving and/or purging, your body is suffering. Your body is dying.
    Eating disorders are self-harm. Don't lie to yourself any longer, and don't believe the lies whispered to you by the enemy. You are hurting yourself. You are hurting others, too. And you must stop.
  • Turn off the tv, throw away the magazines, ditch the diet plans. 
    Media is saturated with unrealistic, impossible images of people. Those people don't even look like that in real life! Why would you want to be fake, anyway? For real. Ask yourself that right now. Maybe you will get to the root of the eating disorder. "Why am I not good enough the way I am naturally?" {Psst. The answer is you're more than good enough!!!}
    All of media is further temptation to continue to harm yourself. DO NOT, under any circumstances, look to the media/magazines/diet books for images to emulate. Be YOU.
    And those diet plans? Those shelves upon shelves of diet books at Barnes & Noble and every other bookstore around -- many of those are junk! There are a lot of people trying to make money off of vulnerable sweethearts like you, and they will have all sorts of theories. But you need one theory - and that is getting well allows you to live the abundant life God has in store for you. So ditch the crappy magazines and diet books, and trade it in for your Bible.
  • Ask people you love and trust to have a candid conversation with you about your health.
    This might lead to the most painful conversations you have ever had. You will be tempted to get defensive. Don't. Listen with heart. Allow them to speak freely out of deep love and concern. Open your soul to the possibility that you need to get well, and know that you have people who are rooting for you. They are with you, and they are for you.
    And during this conversation, be candid and honest with them. Tell them how scared you are to hold on to ED, but how you're even more afraid to let go! Put them in your shoes, in your head - teach them about the complications of this without justifying your self-harm. We can all learn from each other.
  • Make a decision.
    Decide that you are done. Circle it on the calendar. Draw a heart on the day. This is it; you are getting a new life. You are turning your back on fear, condemnation, and death.
  • Give it to God.
    People used to tell me that I would suffer from "eating disorder thinking" for the rest of my life; the disease would never truly be gone.
    I call their bluff.
    That is only true if you live in a purely secular world. But I have Jesus, and He has me - the war is won already!!! I NEVER, EVER, EVERRRR have to go back to ED. I walk with confidence that I am free. If I have a bad day or two, when the enemy surrounds me, I just hold up my shield. I stand firm with the Holy Spirit speaking lovingly to me, guiding me through battle. I am not perfect at this yet, but I know that I will NOT have ED forever. I am healthy, courageous, strong (even when I am weak, then I am strong because of Jesus!).
    I say this often: I do not know anything of healing without full surrender to Jesus. You may have ED forever ... but that's only if you don't give it to God.
    Sister, He will make your life more beautiful than you can even dream of right now.
We are Daughters of the Most High, and we refuse to live in bondage.
We put down the gun.
We let Jesus break the shackles from our wrists.
We are victorious.

Say it. Right now, Princess Warrior. "I am victorious."

Shout out to Pastor Shane Holden for the verses and reminder today!