If you’re a health-conscious Christian who has been praying about your weight and health, yet it feels like you’re still not gaining victory in this area of your life, then this post is for you.
It is inspired by a great question that a member shared about her frustration with reaching out to God for help with her eating. I pray that her question and my insights resonate with you too.
L.C. said, “I need some help. I seem to be at a crossroads. Every morning I make pleas for help and ask God to forgive me for my previous day’s sins, and I look for a verse to help me as I go throughout the day.
HOWEVER. It seems like every day I mess up. Like I INTENTIONALLY go for things that are wrong for me and that I know I don’t need. I feel like I’m upsetting God with my choices but I can’t seem to stop. I WANT TO GET VICTORY!!!!”
Have you ever felt like this? I know I have in the area of my health, my marriage, my parenting, and my business. What makes it more challenging is that we’re actually going to God like we’ve been taught. We feel like we’re doing the right thing by submitting to God. So if we’re doing what we’re ‘supposed’ to do, then why are we still struggling?
After praying about her question, the Holy Spirit showed me why L.C., and many of us, continue to struggle with our weight despite going to God. Here is an expanded version of what I shared with L.C.
“God bids us to come to him, but how we approach Him makes a difference as to whether our prayers will be answered or not. This is not because God is saying, “You did not ask me properly so, no, your request is denied,” but because you end up sabotaging your own success. Here’s how.
Your focus seems to be on your sin which still has you focused on yourself, your faults, and your wrongs. Instead, why don’t you change your posture when you pray. Focus on the goodness of God; focus on his mercy and His love for you.
Instead of going to Him each day feeling bad, go to Him with love and thanksgiving for what He has done and is doing in your life.
When you go to God focused on your wrongs, then it’s difficult to hear the Holy Spirit’s voice over your loud voice of shame, conviction, and guilt. We often assume that God must feel the same way about us that we feel about ourselves which is a complete lie.
Secondly, I suggest you let go of all YOUR expectations and faulty beliefs about what your answered prayers should look like when you approach God. If you believe that because you’ve prayed, you should never experience another food craving, then that’s your belief, but not necessarily God’s strategy for healing and deliverance for you.
For some people, there is instantaneous change, and I don’t know why, but for most of us, even though we’ve been forgiven and healed we will not be instantaneously changed. God still has transformational work to do in us that will take time. God may not take away your cravings next week or even next month but you must trust and believe that He will do what’s best for you.
God does not operate the way we think He should. His goal in our lives is to provide us with abundant freedom from sin which is available to those who in humility seek Him alone for help. Humility also means allowing Him to set us free the way He chooses, not the way we think He should.
“For one who has died has been set free from sin … So you also must consider yourselves dead to sin and alive to God in Christ Jesus.” Romans 6:7
Ask yourself, ‘If God took away my cravings right now, can I say with confidence that I have dealt with the underlying issues?’ Remember, the cravings are not the ’real’ issue—they only point you to a deeper issue and it’s the deeper issue that you need to continually be bringing before God. It’s the deeper issue that is keeping you from loving God with all your heart.
So, your role in this entire process is to:
1. Believe and trust that you have been healed and transformed.
2. Continue to submit this journey to Him every day with humility, praise, and thanksgiving—even when you don’t feel like it.
God’s heart is for freedom, but understand that freedom through Jesus only happens when we continually submit our lives to him daily without having an expectation of how or when God should transform us. Believe that it is done!