Wednesday, September 26, 2012


"I wanna quit!!" That's the theme of my life some days. I think I get easily caught up in my own little world which seems to magnify EVERYTHING. Raising five kids, three of whom are adopted and have a whole 'nother set of issues, the role of wife to a man who is out of town regularly, trying to eat healthy and exercise every day, homeschooling two kindergarteners, a third grader, an 8th grader and a 10th grader, daily quiet time with the Lord, managing all of our schedules, soccer, co-op, races, discipleship opportunities, time with friends, and oh, managing the ministry administrative just gets a little much some days, you know?

Recently our family had the opportunity to go to Disney World where we had a blast...I wouldn't say it was restful...but it was good. I have to honestly say that it was the most fun watching Zeke...after EVERY single ride, restaurant, show, parade..he would squeal with delight. I saw several Disney cast members laugh because of his reaction. I think this picture sums it up...and it makes me laugh daily.

While we were so grateful for the time away, we had to face the reality of coming back home. And getting back into the swing of healthy eating (we ate about 80% healthy at WDW) and exercise (we did exercise there too) has been HARD! I wanna quit...every day!

So, whoever said this gets easier...YOU LIED! It is still a mental battle that I must surrender to the Lord every moment. This past Saturday I ran with JT and Madison who are both training for a half-marathon in November. They are ahead of me on training but I've been running on their long runs on Saturday anyway. Hey, who knows, maybe I'll just run that half-marathon with them at this point? I should if I'm training...or that's my thought at this moment...I'm sure that could change at any given moment. Anyway, back to the story. They were supposed to run 8.3 miles which would be the furtherest I've run (and them too) but I had agreed to go 7.5 because I had to take our oldest daughter to a birthday outing.

The first 3 miles were difficult and my body and mind kept screaming, "I wanna quit!" But once I get settled into the rhythm and focus my mind on God, I just keeping running. I am so grateful that the Lord is using the time to tame my mental laziness and turn my attention to His great name!

So, on Sunday we agreed to participate in an adventure race for Sozo Children (they work in Uganda...check it out..pretty cool stuff). We had never been in an adventure race and didn't know what to expect. Naïvely I thought that there would be a short obstacle every mile or so for 3 miles...I was WRONG. There were a dozen or so obstacles and most involved mud and water. The picture below is not a clear picture as we had to swim across a small part of a lake at the end which washed all of the mud off! But, looking back, it was fun....and I would do it again.

Just this morning I did NOT want to run. But the air was cool (thank you Lord) and crisp, and so I headed out. I spent the whole first mile (that's ten minutes) telling the Lord why I wanted to quit and justifying quitting at any given second. God gently reminded me that I need to spend that time praying and to stop complaining. So, I mentally recall the prayer list that He has given me.....

I think of friends waiting for their travel dates to China to meet their new children and a friend who is waiting for a double lung transplant and missionaries in Guatemala and a child who will forever be in a wheelchair yet praises the Lord and friends battling cancer and a friend who will marry off her daughter soon and friends who have children in college now or grandchildren and a friend battling an autoimmune deficiency and another who is battling an addiction and so many more. God is so good to take my mind off of me...and to place it on Him.

And now I can officially say that I am NOT a quitter. I am in this for the long haul. It is a lifestyle and not a quick fix. I am most looking forward to the half marathon in February because God has given me 53 people to pray for..that's someone every 1/4 mile (and one for the last tenth)...and I will need EVERY one of them. I will write their initials on my forearms and intercede.... I might miss a few princesses along the way..but my attention will be heavenward. I seek nothing less.

Monday, September 3, 2012

I have an enemy, and his name is ....

Chocolate. Yep, chocolate. More specifically, Hershey’s dark chocolate chips. And, he comes dressed in a brown bag with beautiful writing on it. He tempts my soul.

In Matthew 4 satan tempts Jesus in various ways. I can say that I would have been the most tempted by the bread...hunger trumps fear in my life. Hunger trumps a lot in my life...more than I would like to say. To make matters worse, it's not even REAL know, the kind my three youngest kids have known. It's hunger based on past poor eating habits and gluttony. It's hunger from boredom...and it's hunger to avoid stress. But it still feels real, and I want to feed it. EVERY.SINGLE.DAY!

The enemy seems to tempt each person in their weakest area in ways that are unique to that person. Oswald Chambers says, " "A man's disposition on the inside, i.e., what he possesses in his personality, determines what he is tempted by on the outside. The temptation fits the nature of the one tempted, and reveals the possibilities of that nature. Every man has the setting of this own temptation, and the temptation will come along the line of the ruling disposition." Matthew 26:41 tells us to pray in order that we might combat temptation because "the spirit is willing but the body is weak." It appears to me that satan tempts me PERSONALLY in the areas where I am weakest....eating and exercise.

My biggest struggle right now (and the struggles seem to change as I obey the Father) is chocolate! Yep...chocolate! We do not have junk in our house but we do have dark chocolate chips that the girls use in baking ABC muffins. They are delicious yumminess in a dark brown bag. Every time I enter the kitchen (whether at 6 in the morning or 9 at night), I am tempted to eat them...every last one of them! If I eat a few, I will find myself going back in ten more minutes to eat a few more...and again and again and again.

I have NO will power....which is a good thing in that God will use His strength only to fight this battle. I have to take those tempting thoughts captive and drink a glass of water instead. There are days where I am totally winning this battle and days I am losing it BIG time!

I am still at my goal weight and exercise has been a constant around here. It's helpful to have the family on board when it comes to hitting the road for a run every day. But, I am still weak and easily tempted. I am frightened and scared that somehow I will slip up and fall back into old habits.

I must daily relinquish my will and desire and hopes and plans to the Father. I must desires for chocolate that He will increase!

Dear God - You know my heart. It is wicked above all else. I am a sinner unworthy of Your goodness or mercy or grace. I am humbled by Your love, and I am so grateful for Your sacrifice. You paid a debt You did not owe, and I am so thankful. You know that I struggle with eating and exercise. I have been gluttonous, prideful, lazy and mindless with eating and health and the welfare of my family. Thank you for forgiving me...I am overwhelmed by Your love in forgiving me. Please show me Your ways when it comes to chocolate...I want it desperately...and not just a little...I want it a lot. I cannot seem to eat just a little without going overboard. I cannot do this but You can. I am asking You to do what only You can do. May You receive all the glory. I will boast in my weaknesses and magnify You in Your work. I pray that You will use this struggle for Your glory and my good.

What's your temptation today? Where do you struggle? Am I the only one who thinks chocolate may be the death of me? Does anyone else dream or think about it this much?