Thursday, February 28, 2013

Relying on God more...

Week three of Craving Him More brought back so many memories for me. These are some of the first real lessons God used to show me how much I had relied on myself and how little I loved Him. He broke me with this study, again.

ALWAYS start with God's Word and see what He says about food and healthy cannot go wrong there! So, we looked at Exodus 16:1-16, 35. The WHOLE Israelite community was grumbling about food. It was their FIRST complaint. Not the hot weather, sand, lack of shelter...not even was about FOOD! How often we do the same thing when we don't get our food on time and in the way we want it. Yet, we feed our bodies and the bodies of others stuff that is not healthy...because it is what we want, not what He wants for us.

Our grumbling WILL have lasting effects. It spills over onto others, most notably our families and friends. Misery LOVES some company, so we complain. Our "I can't" or "I don't have time" or "It's really hard right now" or even "You just don't understand" will permeate our sphere of influence. Is that really what God desires for us? NO! Time to back away from and put down all excuses. Commit today that this will be a NO EXCUSE ZONE!

The people of God LONGED for the day when they could eat all that they wanted. Their desire was for food and NOT for God. He was in their presence and they had seen Him move in mighty ways (remember the parting of the Red Sea and their deliverance from the pharaoh?), yet they wanted their bellies full more than they wanted God Almighty! Oh, how I can relate!

Next, we studied more of the Israelites' plight in Numbers 11:1-9. Verse four shows us the people began "to crave other foods." They made a list of all the tasty eats they had in Egypt and longed for the days of slavery. Just like Esau being willing to forfeit his lifelong inheritance, they were ready to go back to a life of bondage in exchange for food! I am JUST like that...I am often ready to sell my soul for the desires of my stomach...oh, that is so hard to say but it's true.

Psalm 78:18 sums up the Israelite's demands: "They willfully put God to the test by demanding the food they craved." Now, we may wrap it in a different package and use other words, but many of us do the same with God daily. We choose our own cravings and hunger over what He desires for us.

Then, Mitzi Eaker shared her story, and well, I don't want to give it away. I've read it before, and it inspires, encourages and challenges me. Go here, and find out more about God has worked in her life. And, in case she doesn't mention it, she just finished the Mercedes half marathon in Birmingham two weeks ago. Way to go Mitzi!!!

We concluded the night looking at several highlights from chapters 2-3 in Made to Crave by Lysa Terkeurst:
-This is a battle that rages in our hearts daily.
-It is possible that we love and rely on food more than we love and rely on God? (that question alone made me despise this book in the beginning. It is still a vivid reminder daily of how much I need Him more than anything else)
-Psalm 5:3 reminds us to lay our requests before God and wait in expectation. Try that with your hunger!
-We often desire the benefits of being healthy and in good shape but do NOT want the work required to get there (remember the story of the man's beautiful garden).
-Get a PLAN!!! Plan for what God wants you to eat (I personally have used the 17 day diet and Zone diet but also recommend Paleo) and when He wants you to eat. Make sure it is SUSTAINABLE...not a liquid diet or miracle pill or lose-10-pounds-in-a-week diet. Get organized with your exercise as well! No plan will lead to failure!
-Share your plan with the world or your accountability group (whichever you prefer).

Next week our group will be joining the church-wide prayer gathering ('cause we need to seek His face in a serious fashion about our unhealthy ways and shout out some confession and repentance!!). For the following week, read chapters 4-5 and come with your plan of eating/exercise to share. This is for EVERYONE who is part of this study (not just the ones in physical attendance). Sharing your plan is one of the first steps in honoring the Lord through your body!

Monday, February 25, 2013

Temptations Abound

There are days when the sun is shining, temptations are minimal, and exercise feels good...then I wake up. And reality hits. Like last Monday.

The morning was semi-normal (if you count two kids wetting the bed, spending 2 hours on one child in math, refereeing three arguments, teaching 5 kids at various grade levels and going to Crossfit normal....). Then, it was time for a nutritious lunch - chicken and veggie soup- with water. So far, so good. I've exercised, drank plenty of water, and had 2 healthy meals. Check, check, check.

Madison graciously volunteered to go with me to take a meal to our good friends who just returned home from Colombia. Generally, the older girls make a dessert but they were swamped with schoolwork yesterday and didn't have time. So, we agreed to go by Edgar's Bakery. Uh-oh. I adore that place. It smells so good, and they make everything look so delightful. I went in, picked up the cookies and waited at the counter.

For some unknown reason, the lady who was ahead of me in line had a hard time choosing her cupcakes. It seemed to take her FOREVER. And, of course, the guy behind the counter was not helping as he suggested every indulgence in the store. I was dying.... Then, he asked me if I was sure I didn't want something from the case. "Nope, I'm good, but thank you," I responded. We left immediately and congratulated one another on getting out victoriously.

After dropping off our meal, we decided to go by Krispy Kreme in Hoover to get a gift card for an upcoming birthday. We were only a few minutes away, and that seemed to be the best use of our time. As we enter the parking lot, the drive through line has several cars waiting, so I decide to go in. MISTAKE...BIG MISTAKE.

There was a group of three people in front of me. They were clearly together. And had NEVER been to Krispy Kreme before. NEVER. They ordered a dozen doughnut holes...for three people? Seriously, I knew these were newbies. But, do not fear. While the cashier went to collect their order, they collectively decided to try more a dozen of them...assorted. Did you hear me? ASSORTED!! I was about to die at this point. The doughnuts were already on the conveyor belt smelling of yummy delightful goodness, and I was standing in line for a gift card.

As Miss Krispy Kreme comes back to her post, she eyes me with the "You will have to wait your turn, lady" look. I am praying and asking God to sustain me. 'Cause I want every doughnut in that place....right heard me. The group says "assorted" again...and again. It's like they were rubbing it in. Do you think they got more than one kind of any doughnut? NOPE, they did NOT. They ordered each one individually and then sang the praises of their choices...I KID YOU NOT....

"Ooooh, raspberry filled. Yes, let's get that one. I LOOOOOVE raspberries. And a doughnut with raspberries..that's even better!"

"How about a cinnamon bun one? Oh, yeah. One of those too. We like cinnamon buns. That one has to be good."

"Do you like cake ones? No? Okay, no cake ones."

"Chocolate glazed....are those good? Yeah, we want that one too."

TWELVE times people...not including the ones they rejected. I stood there through every flavor of Krispy Kreme being heralded as the most delicious item they had ever had....and my mouth agreed. I was drooling..and hungry..and drooling... I wanted those doughnuts SO badly.

Let me be VERY clear....I wanted to cave...I could've given in so easily. But, thank God that He is so MUCH MORE than my cravings for food. He was faithful to His promise to sustain me and kept reminding me that He would give me strength. And, He did. He keeps His promises like that. It is when I turn my eyes off Him and onto my own desires that I get messed up.

Keep your eyes on the prize today and seek Him more than anything else!

Thursday, February 21, 2013

Soup for your birthright?

The second week of Craving Him More has now come and gone. We read the introduction and first chapter of Made to Crave and walked right into the heat of the battle.

We started our time with a study of Genesis 25:27-34 where Esau willingly forfeits his birthright for a bowl of soup. That sounds so daunting just to type. Didn't he realize the impact of what he was doing...really realize? Was he in his right mind? We looked at the core of the story:
-Esau had a need - to eat
-Job 31:7 He was led away by his senses. Aren't we often led away by what our eyes see and what our noses smell and what our tongue desires to taste. We crave what we see (in food and in others). Do not allow your feelings to manage your behavior. One of my graduate school professors used to regularly say, "Feelings are like children. When they are good, they are really good. But, when they are bad, don't let them run your house!"
-Esau EXAGGERATED his need (v. 32). It is so easy to criticize Esau here, but we do the SAME thing every day. We are just adults now and can easily satisfy our desires. If we want something sweet and it is not in the house, we go buy it. We even suggest that we are starving. As the mom of three kids who HAVE starved before, I can honestly say, "I may be hungry I am NOT starving."
-Esau wanted his needs met IMMEDIATELY (v. 30). Instant gratification is our enemy. We do NOT have to eat what we want when we want it. Everything needs to be laid before the Lord...EVERY thing.
-Esau was willing to give up the end result (inheritance) for the temporary gain/pleasure
-A bowl of soup for his birthright??? What are we giving up today for the temporary pleasure of food/lack of exercise? For far too long, I gave up my own health and the health of my children. I allowed my own indulgences and desires to be forfeited at the feet of our future. No more.

Then, we looked at the temptation of Jesus in the desert in Matthew 4:1-11. We do not face any temptation that Christ Himself did not face as well. He was 100% divine and 100% human. His body worked just like ours. And, yet we see that He had fasted for forty days and was able to stand firm against the attacks of the enemy.
-Jesus was led by the Spirit. When we lay a "blank check" (as David Platt says) on the table before the Lord, food/health/exercise is a part of that check. Take every food/meal/plan before Him and see where He leads. Ask the Lord before you put anything into your mouth...that allows for much more time with the Lord, first and foremost. And, it gives us the much needed time between our desire and filling that want! We must follow Him and not our feelings or desires.
-Jesus was alone (same as Eve). Accountability is essential to our journey. No hiding. No excuses. Be honest with those who are going to hold your feet to the fire...brutally honest.
-Jesus was hungry. We are NOT alone in our desire for food and the need to eat. He ate. He wanted to eat in this passage. But, His craving for God was MORE than his desire for food.
-Satan takes advantage of our OUTWARD condition. When we are hungry or bored or sad or happy, the enemy will attack our weak areas. Be constantly aware of his tactics.
-How did Jesus react? He quotes Scripture (Deuteronomy 8:3)! Spending time in His Word allow us to fight the battle daily.

Do we BELIEVE that God is enough?? Do we believe that God’s Word can fight our battle against undisciplined physical lives, laziness, gluttony and mindless eating?? Do we LIVE it?

Next we discussed the first parts of Made to Crave and highlighted these concepts:
-It is easier to make excuses than to make changes
-The rich young ruler in Matthew 19 - he goes away sad and unchanged because he refuses to give up the one thing that he craves more than Jesus. We think this applies to riches, but God is talking to us. Give up unhealthy food, easy choices, laziness, lack of exercise, gluttony, secret eating, etc. and follow me.
-How does this journey really affect us? (1) Spiritually - what we eat is of spiritual importance. God says to honor Him in our bodies.
(2) Physically - admit the truth that what we eat and how we exercise matters. My weight is a direct reflection of my choices and the state of my health. (3) Mentally - have to admit that we are tired of compromises and need to change
-My resolve is strong until the next time I get hungry
-God made us to crave - Psalm 84:1-2. Satan wants to replace our craving for God with ANYTHING else!
-The more saturated we are with truth, the more powerful we’ll be in resisting temptation.

Join us next week as we open God's Word to see how the Israelites put God to the test over FOOD...and we will review chapters 2-3 of Made to Crave. This is hard, and we all know it. But, the end results will be lasting, and it will be good.

Monday, February 18, 2013

They are YOUR children!

"We crave what we eat"...I read those words from Lysa Terkeurst's book, Made to Crave, and set the book right back down. That is NOT true, I thought. I can change what I eat anytime I want...I just don't want to change right now. AND, my kids can eat healthy if I wanted them to...but they are just kids, and they deserve to eat special things sometimes.

IT WAS ALL A LIE!!! And I had bought it, packed it up and lived with it for years. I was a believer.

The truth was and IS this: I craved what I ate. I ate junk. I craved junk. I ate empty calories. I craved empty calories. I was lazy. I craved more laziness. My kids ate unhealthy foods ALL the time. They craved unhealthy foods ALL the time. My idea of a "special" occasion had become breakfast, lunch and dinner..with a snack thrown in for good measure.

Even people who eat healthy give their kids JUNK! Why? Your kids WILL CRAVE what we feed them. Do we want them to be in the same position many of us have been in? NO, I DO NOT!

In fact, it was a moment in the pediatrician's office that gave our family cause for alarm. One of our girls was bordering on high blood pressure. What? That was impossible, right? Nope, it was possible.

And, JT and I had to look at the situation and realize that WE WERE AT FAULT. 100%. NO DOUBT. NO ONE ELSE TO BLAME. WE WERE RESPONSIBLE. IT WAS OUR FAULT.

We MUST take responsibility for not only what we eat, how we exercise and what we learn about health BUT ALSO what we are teaching and living out in front of our children! Our goal is simple: Teach our children how to honor Christ with their bodies. But, how do we REALLY do that? Here's our plan:
(1) Provide healthy food for our children (they can have sweets as a treat occasionally and "free" meals twice a week where they get to
have something not on our plan).
(2) Teach them why we eat what we eat and foods to avoid. They know what foods are proteins, carbohydrates and fats. They can even
tell you if a carbohydrate is complex or preferred or if it needs to be avoided.
(3) Exercise WITH our kids. We provide opportunities for our children to run with us or operate a little boot camp at home. Of course,
they play outside almost every day and get plenty of exercise and sunshine too.
(4) Teach our kids to say "NO" to foods...this is an important lesson for them to learn.
(5) Encourage them to drink water and to avoid sodas at all costs.

What are you teaching your children today? Do you think they are learning how to eat healthy from you or in spite of you?

Thursday, February 14, 2013

The Beginning

The Craving Him More study has begun. A group will be meeting each week on Wednesday night at The Church at Brook Hills (modular 15) from 6:30 until 8 to study God's Word. If you are unable to join us, you can visit the blog on Thursday to catch up on the lesson, participate in discussions and find out your next assignment).

What this study is NOT:

This is not a quick fix.
You will not lose 50 pounds in 2 weeks.
It is not a place for excuses.

We want to look into God's Word, study it diligently, meditate on it and apply it to our lives. We long to crave the Father more than we crave anything else in life. We want to want Him desperately, and that's what this study is about. If you are tired of easy outs, quick fixes that put another 10 lbs on, equipment that is used as a coat rack and feeling shameful and embarrassed by your health, this is the place for you. Join a group of believers who are struggling to honor Christ with their bodies but desire to be obedient above all else.

Last night we spent a great deal of our time introducing ourselves to each other. It was humbling and overwhelming to hear my own story retold by woman after woman in that room. I could identify and see myself in each of them. There were admissions of shame, guilt, humiliation, weariness, and loneliness. We were all in the same boat but feeling like we were alone in the battle. God is so good to bring us together to learn from Him side by side.

From Genesis 3 we read about the first sin and how Eve was deceived. We looked at Eve and noticed how her fall is the exact same way the enemy approaches us with food today:

1. The enemy is alive and well. He is seeking to devour us daily. He hates Christ followers and wants us to fail. He desires that our lives NOT bring glory to Christ in any way.
2. Satan knows our weaknesses and attacks us there. He is crafty and cunning. Do not underestimate the enemy and his ways. He will do whatever it takes to bring you down. If he can ruin your witness to a dying world, he will.
3. Eve was near the tree that was forbidden to her. Why? We are often tempted because we refuse to run when we are attacked. We give in when it is convenient or close. Run, people, run!
4. The enemy sought Eve out and placed doubt in her mind. He deliberately twisted God's Word to tickle her ears. She was walking with God in the garden daily, and yet she doubted Him and His Word. He has promised to be faithful to us and to sustain us. We must believe Him and KNOW that He is for us!
5. Eve added to God's instructions (see how she says "do not touch it?"). We will NOT add to or subtract from God's Holy Word. It is enough and we will trust in it.
6. Was it bad enough that satan was talking to Eve, but he had to LIE to her. We believe his lies one will know...what will it hurt?'s just this one can start eating healthy tomorrow.... Recognize the Father's voice and run to Him. Know what His Word says and obey it. Do not allow the enemy a foothold in your life!
7. Notice that Adam is not mentioned until verse 6. Either he stood idly by or was not present when satan began this conversation. Eve appears to be alone or at least, without accountability. Be sure to surround yourself with people who will hold your feet to the fire daily. We NEED to be held to a higher standard. Obviously, we struggle and are not experts in the area of we NEED people who can help us. Do not go this road alone!
8. Eve saw the fruit and became discontent with the beautifully perfect garden God had already given her. She was told that she could eat FREELY from any other tree...FREELY!!! Instead of seeing what she already had, she desired what she couldn't have. Let us focus our attention on all of the good things we already have....
9. She was attracted to the very thing God told her not to eat. She desired and wanted it. She craved it. We often long for the things we cannot have. This is the core issue for us...we MUST desire Him MORE! The things of this world will attract us..whether goldfish or chocolate or ice cream....but He is MORE than enough to satisfy!
10. If Eve was going down, she was not going to do it alone. She brought Adam with her. We tend to long for friends and family who will join us in our unhealthy eating and refusal to exercise. Laziness/lack of discipline/No time/Fear all attract like-minded and like-hearted people. Seek out people who are winning the battle to honor Christ with their bodies and ask for wisdom, encouragement and help.

That's a chunk to unpack, and we will slowly dive into the Word to explore God's commands for us. For next week, please read the introduction of Made to Crave as well as chapter 1. We will look into the account of Jacob and Esau as well as Daniel to see how food played in a role in their lives.

Thank you all for allowing me the honor to walk this journey with you.

If you dare (and are not able to be with us), share your primary struggle with us all in the comments.

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Buying the Lie

Most of us who struggle with weight issues have been seriously deceived for far too long. And, it's time to discover the truth! If you have watched any New Year's infomercial about a diet plan or new piece of exercise equipment, you have heard lots of statistics and persuasive arguments. But, that truth has been distorted and twisted into something that simply tickles our ears. We long to hear about an easy fix and a convenient plan...we desperately want that. But, the truth is not in those infomercials. Let us start with the one place where ONLY truth can be found...God's Word!

You might wonder how the Bible addresses food, and you know what? It does...over and over and over again. Have you ever noticed that? The first sin centers around a piece of fruit. Sure, it was likely healthy but it was NOT beneficial. In fact, it led to death. More on that later. The book of Genesis goes on to give us rules about what we can and cannot eat. Then, the Levitical law takes a whole chapter to describe what is and is not acceptable food in the sight of the Lord.

Jacob and Esau get into a scuffle and spend years apart because of a hunger that didn't wait. Daniel gets in trouble with the king over his choice of diet. Miracles, including the feeding of the 5000 and the feeding of the 4000, show God's glory in making food for all. The first miracle performed by Jesus was at a wedding feast. Christ spends his last night before the crucifixion eating with his disciples.

Do you see it? Food is an essential part of life. It is referred to in almost every book of the Bible. People eat. Jesus ate. We all need to eat. So, what's the problem with eating WHATEVER we want?

Let's take Eve as an example (I will pause at this point and give credit and props where due. I was privileged to be a part of the Pillars Girls' Conference in Canton, Georgia this past weekend. Candace Anderson McDowell spoke on the subject of Eve's role in the fall of man, and it spoke volumes to me in relation to this topic. So, look her up on Facebook people..and look up the conference...good stuff). What happened to Eve FIRST? She was attracted to what she was told she COULD NOT have.

Isn't that what we do? We start a diet or healthy eating plan, and we immediately look at what we CANNOT have! We don't take the time to look at what all we CAN have. Eve had perfection. A beautiful garden was filled with plants, trees, flowers, animals, her husband and MORE IMPORTANTLY, God! He was walking with them daily. Yet, it wasn't enough. Eve wanted what she was commanded not to have. She was attracted to it. She desired it. And, we do the SAME thing.

Let's begin by focusing our attention on what God has given us...plenty of healthy food, supportive families, jobs, sanity (okay, that may be questionable some days), the ability to exercise, etc. Lord, please turn our faces toward what You have already provided. Keep our attention on You and not on what we do not need to eat.

You and I have bought into the lie for far too long. The enemy wants us to be attracted to what we cannot have. He wants our attention to be on the forbidden not on the Creator. Let's stand arm in arm as we battle the enemy together.

Monday, February 11, 2013

The Beginning...

It's the week I've been anticipating for a while now...okay, maybe dreading a little...and the feeling like I'm just about to lose my lunch? Well, I have that too.

Over a year ago God impressed on me to teach what I was learning. Easy enough. I do that every day, right? I homeschool five kids and teaching is just a natural part of my life. Teach a little person how to pair up socks out of the dryer. Teach a teenager how to plan meals for the week. Teach another one how to drive defensively. Show a boy how to order from a menu. Etc, etc, etc. It's just my life.

Then, there's discipleship in spiritual matters...teaching women how to study the Bible, pray, love their husbands, serve joyfully. Got it. Doing it and LOVING it. One of my most favorite things is teaching other women who can carry on an adult conversation with me, and we can sharpen one another! LOVE that kind of teaching!

But teaching what God has shown me regarding health and exercise? Um, no thank you. I have only been doing this for 16 months now, and I am CERTAINLY NO EXPERT. I am just learning too. And, I MIGHT FAIL....there it is...the REAL reason. The pressure that I am placing on myself is unnecessary, I know. I have counseled myself regarding it, and I am fully aware that it is unreasonable and irrational. But, it is there haunting me.

What if I slip? What is someone sees me eating something I shouldn't eat? What if I just don't exercise for days at a time? Then, what will they think? Can I really teach something that I barely know myself?

Ultimately, these feelings of unworthiness and failure come from the enemy and not the Lord. It just shines a light on the lack of trust I have in God's plan. He has called me to do this, and I need to obey because I love Him, not for any other reason. So, I step out in faith knowing that He is doing this for His glory and my good. I do NOT understand, and I do NOT see where this is going. But, He does, and I trust Him.

Please pray that as I begin teaching this Bible study on God's plan for our physical temples, that God would be most glorified in my weakness. Pray that He would be exalted above all else and He will show each of us how to honor Him more.

Monday, February 4, 2013

Do you REALLY want it?

Almost daily I talk to someone who wants to get healthy. And, she SAYS she wants to exercise and eat the right foods. BUT.... BUT....
BUT.... Insert excuse.

My friend Courtney and I reminisced today during a long run. We could only run a mile in January of last year. And, at that, we were HUFFING and PUFFING big time. We were very proud of ourselves. Several months later we went for a four mile run that turned into a 3 mile run with one mile of walking interspersed. Then, we attempted a 10K in June...both of us had to walk some of it. Today, we ran 12 miles. TWELVE miles people. We are the same people...well, maybe not.

The FIRST thing we had to do was ELIMINATE EXCUSES. Courtney's mantra has been "NO EXCUSES," and it WORKS!!! We have both had excuse after excuse in our lives for not wanting to eat healthy or exercise. Some of them even sound wonderful or at least reasonable. But, they are still just that...EXCUSES!

Let's be honest friends...we WILL do what we want to do IF we want to do it badly enough. We will move mountains to meet friends for coffee or go see a movie or even take a nap if that is something we desperately WANT to do. So, the question becomes, do you REALLY WANT to be healthy? Or do you want the RESULTS?

I can tell you honestly that when I began this journey, I WANTED the RESULTS only. I did not want a heart change or lifestyle change. I WANTED to be THIN and not to be unhappy when shopping. But, I did NOT want the work involved in getting there. Why do you think the weight loss community has created a multi-billion dollar industry promoting every type of diet and exercise equipment known to man...and many of them are "convenient" or "fast" or provide "unbelievable results." That appeals to us...little work, no inconvenience, easy. But, is that SUSTAINABLE long-term? Is it healthy? Will it just get us to our goal and then what?

If you really want to get healthy, make the decision today that excuses will be eliminated from your vocabulary. Before we ran today, I thought of so many great-sounding excuses for why I didn't want to go...we were supposed to have company over visiting, the weather was going to be freezing cold, I hadn't run that long yet and wasn't sure if I could....but NONE of those prevented my feet from going. Because NO EXCUSES people!!!

Now get moving!!!!

Friday, February 1, 2013

What is going on?

I have them. You probably have them. Those moments when you eat something and you are not even hungry. The first thought that pops into my mind is food...junk food..something gooey and chocolate..or marshmallows...or ice cream. I am experiencing one of those "continuous onslaught of desire to eat" moments. It is hard. For some people this must NOT be an issue. I do not know any of those people, but I am convinced that they are a major part of my world. They surround me and taunt me constantly. I think.

So I state truths in light of my feelings:

1. My feelings do not control me and do not define me.
2. I have a degree in counseling, for the love. Surely, I can fix this.
3. Jesus, I know that You are enough. So why am I hungry? Why can't I be satisfied in You alone?
4. I have had plenty of food today. Why am I hungry?
5. Why do I desire junk food?

One of the premises of Lysa TerKeurst's book, Made to Crave, is that we need to recognize the triggers that cause us to feel this way. So, I'm digging people, digging deep. Here are the instigators:

1. I wake up.
2. I breathe.
3. I exercise.
4. I homeschool.
5. I am a wife.
6. I am a mother.
7. I am a woman.
8. I am a friend.
9. I am a Christ-follower (okay, that should be number one but I am just putting them as they come to mind)
10. I sleep.

Those are my triggers. Every one of them. See a pattern? It's because I EXIST that I am having these moments. I am a child of the King, the Lord of Lords and the Prince of Peace. He has an enemy, and since He lives within me, I have an enemy too. He does not want me to succeed or to glorify God in any way. So, He attacks. He hits me where it is the hardest FOR ME. He knows my weaknesses, and he exploits them. He uses and abuses them.

I must stand firm in the face of adversity and the adversary. I will not give up that easily. I will speak God's Word to the one who is the father of lies.

-Psalm 100:5 says, "For the LORD is good; His lovingkindness is everlasting And His faithfulness to all generations."
-2 Timothy 2:13 promises, "He is faithful even when we are faithless for He cannot deny Himself."
-John 6:35 Jesus said, "I am the bread of life; he who comes to Me will not hunger, and he who believes in Me will never thirst."
-Philippians 4:19 states "And my God will supply all your needs according to His riches in glory in Christ Jesus."
-Matthew 6:26 says ""Look at the birds of the air, that they do not sow, nor reap nor gather into barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not worth much more than they?"

Oh precious are the promises of God that I can cling to when I feel desperate! Precious are they at ALL times! I am so thankful that He feeds me from His Word and reminds me of His provision. Trust in Him today. Rest in His Word. That IS ENOUGH!