Sometimes all I can say to God is…”wow.” His timing is just so perfect even when it seems upside down. Now is one of those times.
Yesterday I got to hear my old pastor preach at my current church and it was amazing. Even though this wasn’t the main theme of the night, I walked a way on fire to stand in the victory God has granted me over my addiction. To walk out, every day, the freedom and joy he has brought me. To stop talking so much about the negatives in my life and become more positive. To stop always assuming the worst and start believing for the best. Even in things as simple as a table tipping me. Perhaps starting with the small will progress to the big anyway.
I realized I hadn’t fully taken on every challenge and opportunity God had presented me to challenge my ED in the past few days of Lent but I also realized I had 25 days left. So I started a 25-day challenge. To trust God, speak more positive, and fight ED with every opportunity that presents itself. Reality is, if I am not claiming an opportunity to fight ED I am letting ED win. And that just can’t happen anymore. If I say I am not strong enough or am too scared, I am saying my fears are bigger than God when reality is God is bigger than my fears.
My pastor also said that our freedom is bought with a price. I forget that so many times. That the blood of Christ bought me victory over every lie and ED behavior I have. Over every struggle. He also said we need to stop laying back down in coffins, and start running free of our shackles. Wow! How strong of a statement is that. So I left motivated and on fire.
THEN TODAY HAPPENED. I have been really sick and woke up still sick and tired. I allowedmyself to nap, which is something I never do, but eventually forced myself to get up so I could start working on my 10,000 steps I now require myself to get every day. I realized how disordered it was but just felt it was something I needed to do to be “healthy”—a frequent tactic of the Enemy to trick me.
Eventually I got too tired and laid back down for more of a nap. Then it was time to get up and have lunch….and the option presented to me by my starch box was the most terrifying. I just didn’t feel I could do it. But with the motivation of it being my dad’s anniversary and the stern reminder of last night from my recovery coach, I stood in victory and did it. It was terrifying but honestly felt good.
I then let myself go to spin because I wanted to feel alive. Smart to do when you are sick? Probably not. But I went anyway. And the easiest instructor was subbing for the usual tough one. And off ED went. Telling me how I needed to do extra, restrict later, blah blah blah. But I was honestly too exhausted to listen. So I went to class and after went to do my cool down and was filled with all of ED’s lies. That’s when I took out my book to read while I biked and saw this on the back cover:
This is a new book I am reading called In a Pit with a Lion on a Snowy Day and it’s freaking amazing and was filled with just the Truth I needed today. Through the story of Beniah, the author introduced in chapter one we are meant to be lion chasers. What does this mean?
It means we are meant to stare our fears in the face and chase them down, not let them force us to run away. Benaiah did just this when he CHASED DOWN a lion and killed it in a pit on a snowy day. Yes. You read that right. He didn’t fight off a lion, or get chased by a lion, he CHASED DOWN a lion. That means he looked the lion in the eyes, and in the instant most people would turn and run, he chased that lion down. And eventually killed it. And you know what. He was victorious and because he CHASED DOWN the lion instead of letting the lion chase him, he eventually became the head of the Israeli army.
So what does this mean for us? It means that those times when we are present with challenges or opportunities to face our fears and our minds tell us all the reasons why its not the reason to face the fear, it is the PERFECT time to face the fear, because it’s God’s time. I doubt Beniah looked that lion in the eyes and thought, yep, today is the perfect day to chase this lion down. I totally woke up this morning looking for the perfect lion to chase down. No! He probably thought, “shit there is a lion here.” And he took his fear and ran with it, right at the lion, and right to victory.
And here is the thing. Those moments when we chase down our lions, those our usually the moments of our greatest victories. For me, in recovery I know that’s true. The moments I take the opportunities to fight ED aren’t the ones I regret, I regret the times I didn’t. The times I let a chance of freedom pass me by. The reality is, with Christ we are equipped every day to face any challenge that comes our way. And every challenge is God-ordained. An opportunity for Him to build us into the lion chaser He calls us to be.
So let’s stop running scared of our fears. Let’s stop letting our fears chase us down and stop letting the fear in our guts rob God from the glory He deserves. It’s time we look at challenges as chances for freedom. Look at obstacles as opportunities to fight. And walk into the surprise as well as planned challenges we face, because we know all of them are chosen by God just for us. And that we are in the exact right place at the right time to face them, because we are right where God positioned us to be. Right where he put us to claim new victory in him.
It won’t be easy, and sometimes we may strike out, but in the end I am confident if we start chasing our lions, seizing our God-ordained challenges, and fight with the strength He provides, we will find the freedom His precious blood bought us. For me, that meant leaving the gym because I was tired. Not adding extra. And facing another few fear foods tonight. Those were my lions. Today seemed so “wrong”. It wasn’t “supposed” to be this scary. That’s what I thought. Now I see today was really perfect, and God knew it was perfect day for some victories. Especially on what would have been my dad and stepmom’s 4 year wedding anniversary—a day we would celebrate as a family anniversary. This one is for you papa, I am letting out my inner roar as you always said, and I am chasing down some lions for Christ.