The beginning was many many years ago now. I see it far off in the past distance. So thankful that there was a beginning though. So thankful.
Sometime I will share the very beginning again, here for y'all but for today... just know that we have many beginnings in our life and this, today is a knew beginning for me again, a new chapter. I love knew chapters. I love letting go of what doesn't grow us and feed us and make us who we need to be.
"I am no longer a slave to fear. I am a child of GOD." And this statement is my new beginning. I am truly born again and I no longer have to be afraid to experience anything that GOD has for me.
If you have followed me on Facebook or Instagram, you know I've fought the good fight with food, losing and winning like the ocean waves that come and go on the coastal shore line.
I know GOD gave me a direction when I prayed about it years ago. I know with everything in me that HE is leading me. HE's changing me. HE has changed me, so so much. I didn't know when I prayed that I would get more than I bargained for. I thought those frantic prayers to lose weight where an end to a means. I was 303.3 pounds and everything in my life was out control. All I could do was eat to comfort myself. My friends had betrayed me, one by one. My husband had betrayed me. People had quite me. I didn't know how harmful I was being to myself. My self hate was destroying me. I didn't know grace. GRACE through Jesus Christ saved me.
And from that moment on, in prayer, GOD changed everything. EVERYTHING. HE still is. HE still is.
So. My journey continues but this is where y'all join me. Today. You join me today and I am touched and blessed by your presence in my life. The knowledge that we do everything for a gift, as a blessing to others is beyond beautiful to me. Nothing I have ever done for myself is as satisfying as it is to give to others. I mean that. I love giving and I hope this story and continuing journey gives you hope and inspiration to never quit, to never give up. GOD is our hope. HE is our constant help. I write this for y'all. I write this because I won't always be here but my words can outlive me here on earth. I have a story of hope that spans the walls of time and JESUS has saved me from myself. I am no one special, except that I am a child of GOD. You can be too. And if you are... oh my! The joy GOD has for you when you give up the things you love more than HIM!!!
But. I'm jumping ahead. Reeling the story back in.
I've talked with GOD over the months several times about blogging. He had to open some doors back up inside me that I closed and locked years ago. From the time I was a child and could hold a pencil and spell and understand words I have had a passion for writing. Perhaps a gift. Absolutely a calling for it. It desires me. It won't leave me alone. GOD whispers to me and says to pick up my pen. I have often ignored HIM.
I'm sad to admit that. How could I ever ignore our FATHER? Fear. Simple fear. I remember the words of those that criticized me and told me I was stupid for the things I've written. I remember the fights because I could pour out my heart and express in such a fashion. I closed the door and locked it to protect myself.
I'm really good at that... at protecting myself. I have a huge heart. I am so full of love but when I see rejection I just walk away so I don't hurt. I'm not a beggar. I have never been. So I close the door and some of those doors get locked. BUT, GOD didn't want this door locked and as HE's been healing me on this food journey, HE decided today was the day that HE was going to give writing back to me. How cool is that? Beautifully cool and gracious of HIM that HE didn't take away the gift that HE had gifted me even after I discarded it. For real. Gracious. Loving. Mesmerizing.
So here is my new beginning and apparently writing is part of it. And I am over joyed. Truly.
So let's begin.
So this is me. Today. I change every day so I wanted a picture that showed me today. History is a gift and I am a photographer so... here I am. :) I also wanted a picture at this weight. Cuz things are about to change :) I started this battle at 303.3lbs. I got down to 200 this past year for 1 day but over the next 6 months I put 15 pounds back on. Then this last 6 months it continued to creep up. Today I was at 226.6.
I know GOD told me to cut out meat. I have. Easily. He gave me eggs and I adore them. Just this morning I looked up what a woman needs in protein in a day and I am getting way more protein that I need most of the time. HE sure is a good good GOD. GOD also told me to cut out grains and processed foods. Grains where hard a year and a half ago but not anymore. I don't crave them at all. Talk about healing. Bread was a monster in my life. Gone. GOD chased him away. Next GOD told me to eat fruits and vegetables, nuts and seeds. While I added them in, they have not been my portion. I need to make them my portion. I know this.
AND GOD told me to eat at home. I have an addiction, that came up the past two years. I have been addicted to eating out. I didn't know I had an "entitled" bone in my body but in being real with myself, I have to admit that I have felt at times quite entitled to eating out. I work hard. Really hard. It seemed a burden to have to go shopping and then to prepare the meal. It seemed a burden to wash the dishes after words. It seemed a burden. Even though GOD told me to eat at home, it seemed a burden.
I knew that GOD would only give me blessings for my obedience but it seemed a burden.
I knew that GOD would only ask me to do what HE would help me with but it seemed a burden.
I knew that GOD would only want something that was excellent for me but it seemed a burden.
I knew that GOD would only give me life and not harm but it seemed a burden.
Truth. Let's talk about some crazy. There's mine. Shining for all to see as my belly is getting bigger.
So I started praying, cuz prayer is my one way path to my FATHER GOD and I am telling HIM I need a church and a church family and that I am sick of this desert. I am tired of this feeling of out of control, to please show me what I'm doing wrong. I'm still not eating meat. I'm still not eating bread. I don't even desire these things. What gives? My diet isn't that different. BUT.... in the silence I knew I was lying to myself. It was different. When God took that 100 pounds off last year I didn't eat potatoes at every meal and I didn't get all those bad transfats that I get when I eat out. I just didn't. It was really different. It really was.
So I shut up. I prayed and asked GOD just to help me. Just to help me.
First. last week HE gave us a new church. HE really did. I knew it in my heart. I'll tell the story one day.
And this morning, I humbled myself. Not by my doing. Oh no. I'm ridiculous. Remember?
By HIS doing.
I wanted HIM to change me more than I wanted the comfort of those potatoes. AND I REALLY Did and do!!! I realized this morning that over time I had found a way to feel that same great feeling I use to get with bread but with potatoes instead. That feeling that let's me hide my hurt, that leaves me so full that I can't feel any of the pain. Weird, I know, but it's true.
AND It's easy to go back to old habits. I had some hurt from these past few months, that I didn't realize till this morning. I was hiding from that hurt in my food again. WOW. All of this came to me while talking with GOD this morning. True Story.
This morning we go to church. Praise GOD. It's our second week at this church and I am deeply blessed. I'm going to save that story for another blog like I said but just know that GOD answers prayers and if you will wait on HIM it will be perfect. Truly.
So church happens. AND this:
The church meeting was about prayer. And it was brilliant, and beautiful, peaceful and true. And my spirit knew it. My spirit recognized that every word was true And I knew GOD was speaking to us. That HE was reminding me that my prayers are our sharing and talking and our actual relationship and that HE is with me and that HE's not done and that the next steps are moments away. How beautiful is that?
Then Communion happened.
I couldn't believe it. Today's Church's don't always have communion. Just this morning, as I was getting ready, communion crossed my mind. For real. How sad that we don't always do that, I told the LORD. But when I was praising and singing at The Church... I saw the communion stands and was overjoyed... and amazed. WOW! "We just talked about this Lord!"
And then this... the pictures above these writings. They had passed out a paper in our directories that had 28 Days of Prayer and Fasting. WHAT?? The past few days God had brought fasting from eating out across my heart at different times during the day. WHAT??? The whole Church was encouraged gently to fast from food or something else if needed, but definitely food if you could and to be in prayer about it. I teared up instantly. I knew I was suppose to fast from quick food, quick restaurant food. Restaurant food.
GOD is a mountain moving GOD and I knew that. I have it written on my heart every day of my life now. It is in my thoughts and prayers. I see HIM moving my mountains constantly. Today's Word was about that. In those terms. Right before communion we wrote our mountain that needed to be moved down on a piece of paper that The Church had provided. I looked down at it when The Pastor asked us to roll it up and put it in the prayer wall after communion and was blown away.
He said that this fast was for that mountain to be moved.
My mountain, I wrote on the paper, was FOOD and doing what God had told me to do about it.
THIS FAST WAS SO GOD COULD MOVE MY MOUNTAIN.
The mountain that has stood in my way. The mountain that has stolen my joy. The mountain that keeps me from walking my strongest walk with THE LORD.
It is time for that mountain to crumble and it's only going to go away with prayer and fasting and GOD has already prepared my heart and my faith. How beautiful is that? HE is such a gracious and beautiful GOD. I am in AWE!
And so. Though I had eaten breakfast out this morning and even cut the potatoes out by eating eggs and tomatoes, I told my husband that I knew I was to fast completely from restraints and to cut them out of my life for the next 28 days. I was scared. I didn't know what Tim would say.
But you know what he said? Okay.
Praise God. He said okay!!!!!! There was a mountain GOD just moved. Not kidding. Y'all don't know. GOD must have prepared Tim's heart too. For real. What GRACE!
And... I know GOD will heal me of this stubbornness. He wants me to quit holding on to this world and to hold on to HIM! HE's leading my way!
Would you please pray for me. I ask you because it's powerful and it will help me. I ask you because it's a gift to you too. Praying for others is a beautiful way to spend time with our FATHER. Beautiful.
And so, once I knew we were eating at home, I had to decide what to make. What better time to share a food blog lol! I will share my lunch with y'all below. Dinner hasn't happened yet even though it's 7:33pm now. I'm not hungry yet and I guess Tim isn't either. He hasn't said anything yet. :) Interesting.
Thank GOD I'm the queen of concoctions lol! I opened my fridge and threw this together so that I could move on with my day and not go shopping. :) Tomorrow I will shop. Today I will enjoy.
I made a type of salad out of cucumber that had been gifted to us. I also made some dip cuz this guurl loves some dip and tortilla chips lol. I didn't need eggs at this meal. I wasn't feelin it but I fried Tim, my husband some chicken to go with his meal. It was so good.
Lets go through the steps in case you want to fix any of it latter!
Please click the images to see them larger.
First I made a dip. I love textures (or hate them lol) and I might not want the salad but blend it up and give me some chips and you just served some amazing health in a yummy way! And... Raw organic cashews are the bomb. I can't even remember where I bought these but I'm for sure going to be hunting them down again! They add a creaminess that I love! So I threw some of them and a bag of organic broccoli slaw into my Ninja.
Day #1 of my 28 day fast.
I lived and feel happy. Thankful. Overjoyed actually. No withdrawal symptoms yet. Oh their coming. When my eyes open in the morning and my feet hit the floor running and I can't go to breakfast like normal the pout will come on full force but for tonight I'm going to wallow in how good it feels to do my FATHER's WILL.
Pray for me.
I'm not the person that I was the day I met my husband over 20 years ago. He didn't bank on me changing but man am I thankful for it. It made it rough at times. The person I was is no more. Love has changed me. Forever changed me. GOD's love has changed me.
My husband probably still wants his fast food, pizza eating girl that wallowed in the food gutters with him but I see the positive changes in his life too because of how GOD is changing me. It's quite the ripple effect.
It's a process.
And I love it.
Thank YOU GOD.
Whatever you need to give up and change, know that GOD will help you! Truly. Just ask HIM and wait for HIS timing. HE's AMAZING!!!!
I love you guys but HE loves you more.
I needed a place to write and share and grow, a personal space to thrive in written form. I finally realized I had it at my finger tips. This space is perfect to invite you into. So happy you have joined me here. - Shannon