Made to Crave ~ Chapter 2

made to crave
Thank you so much for your sweet comments, encouraging words and prayers from my last post…I appreciate you guys so much!!
I had several people mention wanting accountability through this journey…I just wanted you to know that I am committing to pray for each of you that has commented on these posts that you are on this journey as well!! If you haven’t commented and want me to add your name to my list, let me know!! I have your names in my prayer journal and each time I pray for my own self-discipline and health, I pray for you, too!!
Chapter 2 is called Replacing My Cravings and I loved this chapter!! God has been growing in my heart a desire and love for prayer and so her suggestions in this chapter were great for me!! Learning to pray in the moment and also recite Scripture has been a big blessing for me!
“I relied on food more than I relied on God. I craved food more than I craved God. Food was my comfort. Food was my reward. Food was my joy. Food was what I turned to in times of stress, sadness and even times of happiness.” — Lysa TerKeurst from Made to Crave, p. 29.
This quote really resonated with me. I never really thought of myself as a stress-eater, but when I sat down and started thinking about it, I realized that sadly, it is true. When I’ve had a rough morning with the kids, I craved a big coke. At the end of the day, especially after a long day, but even as a reward for getting the kids in bed (ha) I would have a big bowl of ice cream. And I’m learning that when I eat the sweets, I crave more. They are addictive for me. Seriously.
“Each time I craved something I knew wasn’t part of my plan, I used that craving as a prompt to pray. I craved a lot. So I found myself praying a lot.” — Lysa TerKeurst from Made to Crave, p. 30.This can actually be a very encouraging thing! I have been asking God for years now to make me into a prayer warrior. Well, whatever gets me praying is a GOOD THING! I’ll take it. :)Memorizing and meditating on Scripture also helps me! I thought I would share a few verses that are helping me in this battle in particular. I would LOVE to hear from you! What Scriptures and/or prayers are you clinging to right now??
Psalm 73:26, “My flesh and my heart may fail, but God is the strength of my heart and my portion forever.”
2 Cor. 12:9, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.”
1 Cor. 10:12-13, “No temptation has seized you except what is common to man. And God is faithful; he will not let you be tempted beyond what you can bear. But when you are tempted, he will provide a way out so that you can stand up under it.”
 
What Scriptures are you clinging to this week?
More Made to Crave Links:

This is Hard. {Made to Crave, Intro & Ch. 1}

made to crave
7 pounds down, many more to go. This post may be all over the place, if so, I apologize in advance. 🙂 But, it’s time for me to be real. It’s time for me to be honest as an act of accountability in keeping this battle going strong. And, let me tell you, it is a battle.
I have a love/hate relationship with food. Let’s be honest, I love it too much and don’t hate it quite enough. 🙂 And right at this moment I am discouraged.
This is hard. I don’t like it. I don’t like not eating any of the foods I love. I don’t like very many veggies at all. I’m tired of salad. I’m tired of searching for proteins and having water with my meals. And this journey has only just begun. Depressing, huh?
“It’s not the ‘how to’ I’m missing. It’s the ‘want to’…really wanting to make changes and deciding that the results of those changes are worth the sacrifice.” –Lysa TerKeurst, from the Introduction of Made to Crave: Satisfying Your Deepest Desire with God, Not Food.
This is exactly my problem, like I mentioned in my overview of the book. I know what I need to do…eat less carbs and sugar, eat more veggies, exercise more. Yada. Yada.Yada. Pardon my lack of enthusiasm.
I am at the stage now where I’m determined – and the first 7 pounds gone is a *teensy* bit encouraging. (I’m encouraged, yes, but my weight has not budged since January though I’ve been off and on determined since then. ha!) I’m thankful that for the first time my weight is budging…I’m thankful for the grace that is getting me to the community center to walk/jog on those treadmills. I’m thankful for the increase in energy that I am finally seeing, which I have been asking God to grant me for months now.
But, I still am yearning to want to live a healthier lifestyle. I want to want it so badly. But, sometimes I want the french fries and ice cream a little bit more. And, that is just where I’m at right now.
I also want to mention the dirty little “d” word that I haven’t mentioned around here in quite awhile. Depression. Yep…it does go along with this. I *think* my anti-depressant has helped my weight gain along. I’m not saying it is ALL the fault of lexapro. I am admitting that I like carbs, sugar and fries too much. But, it does seem that when I’m on this med (which has definitely been a lifesaver as far as my mental health goes) that my weight creeps up.
So…I am attempting to wean off of my lexapro. Please pray for me. Seriously. I am begging God to let me be “ok” off of this med…I want it so badly. I know it’s ok if I do need it (or something else) in the future. I have mentioned on this blog many times, and if you are a long time reader, you know I am not against anti-depressants. I have been off and on (mostly on) lexapro for nearly 6 years now. It has saved my sanity. Truly.
But, I feel like it’s time. Actually, the side effects are just starting to wear me out. It makes me extra tired. It makes me gain weight. It makes me hot. all.the.time. I sweat in the mornings when I get ready and it is awful…it makes me wonder why I just took a shower. 🙂
Anyway…so it’s all tied in together…and I think that is a big part of what God is showing me…my mental health, my emotions, my spiritual health, my walk with Him, my physical body and it’s well-being…all of it goes together. And, I need to do a better job of taking care of all of those components.
One more side note that does go along with all this is that I am seeing a licensed nurse that practices natural medicine from an office in her home. I have been seeing her for a few months and finally, FINALLY I can see a difference in how I feel. I am encouraged by that as well…
So, there are good things. But, tonight…as I’m just getting back from our local community center where I burned a lousy 300 calories and sweated like a mad-woman while walk/jogging for 30 minutes, I wonder…will I ever begin to enjoy this?? I don’t know. Maybe I will. Maybe I won’t. But for now, I’m keeping on keeping on. I know that not everything in life is enjoyable!!
I am thinking on the truth from Lysa’s book that we are made to crave something. I crave certain foods, I realize this. Lysa mentions later in this book that there are many scientific studies that show certain foods do lend themselves to becoming addictive. {Why, oh why, are those all the foods I crave??} So, I’m thankful that I am not alone in this battle, but it just doesn’t make it easier, ya know??
So, for now, to sum up…
A few goals (which are also prayer requests, thank you for praying for me!!)
  • wean off lexapro successfully
  • continue eating vegetables daily (this is very hard for me!)
  • no sweets
  • very few carbs
  • more protein
  • no soda
  • exercise several times per week (I’m aiming at every other day minimum, but even if it is only a few times a week, I’m ok with that for now)
  • more prayer, less thinking about food (this is another great point from Lysa’s book that we will discuss in a later chapter)
  • continue on the natural supplements and vitamins
  • to begin to crave the good foods and be happier eating them (not sure if this is wishful thinking or not, but I am praying that way none-the-less)
I know this is long. If you have made it this far, bless you. There is still more I want to say, but this is only the beginning of the book and I will share more as I blog about further chapters. Like I mentioned before, this book is just so good…I’m thankful for the perspective I am gaining.
I will leave you with a quote from a chapter near the end of the book, but it really encouraged me tonight…
“What if this whole journey of getting healthy could be more about what we’re in the process of gaining than what we’re losing? In the midst of losing chips and chocolate, there are things to be gained. Things that unleash my weighted down soul, reinflate my defeated attitude, and set loose a hope that maybe, just maybe, I can.” — Lysa TerKeurst, from Made to Crave, Ch. 18.

Portion Control through Christ

made to crave
If you are watching what you eat, on a diet or striving to live a healthier lifestyle you are probably very familiar with the term “portion control.” It isn’t the most feel-good phrase, is it?ha!
As I am reading Made to Crave, I am finding HOPE and ENCOURAGEMENT from the word “portion” and I will probably never look at that phrase, portion control, the same. Thank goodness, right?
Let me give you a few Scripture verses to show you what I mean.
“Whom have I in heaven but You?
And earth has nothing I desire besides You.
My flesh and my heart may fail,
but God is the strength of my heart
and my portion forever.”
Psalm 73:73:25-26
This verse from Psalm 73 could most definitely be my life verse. My flesh and my heart fail SO OFTEN…but GOD is my strength! That has been just such a powerful lesson and huge blessing in my life to realize that I DON’T HAVE TO DO IT ALL…HE is my strength!! I don’t have to be strong because in Christ, my weakness shows His strength. Praise God!!
“Lord, you have assigned me my portion and my cup;
you have made my lot secured.”
Psalm 16:5
To me, this verse tells me that everything in my life has been “assigned” by God…I don’t have to worry that He isn’t aware, He has assigned me my portion! He has given me all I need for this life in Himself…He has a plan perfect for my life, I just need to listen to Him and follow. He has given me my SECURITY!!
“You are my portion, O Lord…”
Psalm 119:57
This verse has become one of those short, breath prayers that I cling to throughout my day. I am constantly reminding myself that He is my portion – NOTHING ELSE will satisfy – not food, not people, not stuff, etc…I am so thankful that HE ALONE is my portion and that He is teaching me that nothing else on earth will satisfy me. As I pray these words and tell the Lord that He is my portion, I sense His pleasure.
“Because of the Lord’s great love we are not consumed,
for his compassions never fail.
They are new every morning;
great is your faithfulness.
I say to myself, ‘the Lord is my portion;
therefore I will wait for him.”
Lamentations 3:22-23
This is my all time favorite verse…in fact, I named my blog after this passage. 🙂 And my favorite hymn, Great is Thy Faithfulness, comes from this passage. And now, I have an even greater appreciation for these words! I had never focused in on the last part of this verse before, always looking at the “new mercies” part. But, now I see that these go together hand in hand. The LORD is my portion…and I need not feel guilt or condemnation over yesterday’s choices and battles because His mercies are new EVERY MORNING. And, because HE is my portion, I will WAIT ON HIM instead of looking elsewhere for my joy. Instead of waiting on the “next best thing” to happen in life, I already have THE best thing to fill me up!!
How do you view the word “portion?” I’d love to hear your thoughts!

Made to Crave

I am almost to the end of the book, Made to Crave: Satisfying Your Deepest Desire with God, Not Food, by Lysa TerKeurst. It is excellent! I mean, so, so good!

made to crave

 

I have to be honest, though. When I first saw this book come out and begin to make its way around the web, I didn’t want to read it. I didn’t want a book that told me to stop eating sweets and start eating vegetables. I already knew that.
But, I kept on seeing this book everywhere…and I think the Lord nudged me to just give it a chance. So, I did. And, let me tell you…it is not the book I thought it was going to be! It is so much more than a “healthy eating plan” type of book. In fact, there isn’t really any type of eating plan in this book!
This book is about acknowledging that we were, indeed, created to crave something. Cravings are not bad. It is what we crave that needs to change. Learning to crave God is what I long for…I want more of Him and less of me. Right now, I have some pretty serious food cravings still going on. Most of them are in the carb/sugar family. I have tried several times in recent months to give it up. Pray for me.
“Crave means to long for; want greatly; desire eagerly. Pursuing holiness means God is the only One we should long for, want greatly, desire eagerly. The only One worth of worship.” from Made to Crave, p. 173.
This book is about learning self-control. I admit, self-control and discipline are something I really struggle with! I haven’t ever been able to regularly get up early. I haven’t ever been able to regularly give up sodas. I continue to go back to my carb addiction time and time again. It has to stop!! Self-control is a fruit of the Spirit!! I have got to put forth some effort on my part and stop justifying. Lysa lists lots of justifications in this book…which, I will admit, I gladly read that someone else justified eating certain foods sometimes. 🙂
This book is about discipline that leads to holiness. When put that way, how can I not want to change the way I eat?? I want to be holy, I want to recognize my body at the temple of the Holy Spirit. I want to be more like Him…and He is holy.
“So, I’m not on a diet. I’m on a journey with Jesus to learn the fine art of self-discipline for the purpose of holiness.” from Made to Crave, p. 158.
This book has encouraged me so much. Lysa describes her cravings for food and her inability to give up sweets in ways that I can totally relate to! I don’t like that others share my struggle, but I do appreciate hearing from others who do struggle because then I know I’m not alone! Her writing about this topic is honest, humble and raw. I can appreciate that so very much.
I share all this on my blog because I am praying and thinking about going through the book Made to Crave here on my blog. I’m not planning to ask anyone to read along with me…if you would like to, that would be awesome! However, I think this is something I need to do for myself as much as for anyone else! I need some accountability!! So, I plan to post through the various chapters as well as give updates on my eating habits.
I also plan to share a few scriptures that I want to memorize through this journey. I have already started on the first one, 1 Cor. 10:13. There are scriptures listed in the book and most of them apply to where I am at perfectly!! So, I want to choose these verses to meditate on and memorize so that I have go-to phrases and words in my head and heart when I am tempted or discouraged!
“No temptation has seized you except what is common to man. And God is faithful; he will not let you be tempted beyond what you can bear. But when you are tempted, he will also provide a way out so that you can stand up under it.” 1 Cor. 10:13
Has anyone else read this book?
What are your thoughts?
Do you struggle with eating certain foods?
What has helped you the most?
Does anyone want to journey along with me?

What do you make HOMEMADE??

I wanted to do a little poll with my readers…what things do you make at home that you would say the “average” American purchases from the store? I’m interested in hearing your answers because there may be other “easy” things that I’m missing out on and could try doing at home!! Whether it is to save money or to get rid of chemicals in your home…homemade is always better right? 🙂

Here is my list of homemade items!

~ Bread, with freshly ground whole wheat, too

~ Granola

~ Laundry detergent

~ Dishwasher detergent (2T baking soda in detergent compartment, 1 cup – or more – vinegar in bottom of dishwasher)

~ Mopping solution, floor cleaner (1/3 vinegar, 1/3 water, 1/3 alcohol, few drops dishsoap)

~ Standard cleaner (vinegar and water)

~ Baked goods, any and all (muffins, pancakes, waffles, quick breads, cookies)

~ Smoothies, slushes

~ popsicles

~ when my kids were babies I made their babyfood and their baby wipes (sigh…my kids are getting so big!) 🙁

What about you? What are your favorite homemade goodies and recipes? Please share!