Yesterday, the kids were supposed to be cleaning the living room. Instead, they pulled out the photo albums, and looked at old pictures for a while. I heard them asking who the people were in one picture, then they brought it to me.
Mommy, who are these people? This one looks kind of like you…?
Yes, Kids, that is me. And that’s my cousin….
They looked at the picture, and then looked back at me. Then, they looked at the picture again…
WOW! Mommy, that doesn’t even look like you! You look so different!!
When I look in the mirror, even after a long journey of trying to get healthy, I still see the person in that circa Fall 2002 picture. It has been a long 15ish years since that picture was taken.
I had gastric bypass surgery in 2004, and lost some weight. I didn’t lose enough to be considered a “success story”, but I looked better. Although I went from 325 (after losing a bit of weight before surgery) down to 175ish, I was not any healthier.
My body changed, my mind and heard did not. I did it because I wanted to be skinny and able to wear clothes from a normal clothes rack. I did it out of vanity, not for the right reasons.
Over the next several years, we went through fertility treatments, 3 babies born, and some of the most devastating, gut-wrenching days of parenting. Times that I won’t go into, but really, very gut-wrenching. You can read about some of them here.
Lots of things happened during those years. After the 3 babies were born, and the turmoil really started, I started a destructive path. I focused on survival and self-preservation of sorts. I turned to food instead of God. I ate, and I ate some more. Food was my best friend, and so the weight that I gained with fertility treatment and babies started to grow exponentially. I ended up right back where I started.
I remember the moment, though, that food became less important, and God became more important. I had been a Christian for close to 30 years, but this night will forever be etched in my heart, in every part of my being…
After 2 exhausting hours, I was too tired to move. I was on the cold, hard living room floor, sobbing, begging God for help. Begging for direction. Begging to feel him at that very moment. And, he answered me! God had answered many prayers for me, but this time was different. This moment of desperation was so deep, my heart was so broken, and God reached down, lifted me in his mighty arms, and spoke so clearly…
This will be ok, I love you, I love him.
At that moment, I realized that God really did care. I realized that prayer was more than just, Hey, God, I’m down here. And if you don’t mind, can you bless this supper and spare me food poisoning?
At that moment, my relationship with God was transformed, and my life was transformed. I can look at that night and see how my Christian label became a Walk With Christ.
I am still human, I still make mistakes, and I still have a tendency to turn towards food at times.
But, I’ve been transformed through an immediate, intimate experience with our One True God, and continue through the transformation process that continues with each and every day.
Do not conform to the pattern of this world,
but be transformed by the renewing of your mind.
Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is
–his good, pleasing and perfect will.
Romans 12:2 (NIV)
Want to know more about my transformation? You’ll have to come back tomorrow… I’ll share more about how God has continued to transform my mind, heart, and soul.