Seasons of Joy: The Battle is the Lord’s

I’ve been almost two weeks without sugar or sweeteners.  Do you remember last week I wrote about the side effects of giving up sugar?  Now I don’t know what constitutes a lot of sugar, but I would have said I ate a lot of it.  In particular at night.  Yet I have not had one side effect.  Not one.  I keep thinking I must still be in the kidding myself stage.  I mean this really is very easy.  In fact, the one thing I have been craving doesn’t even have any sugar in it and before giving up I would only have had one can a day maximum, sometimes none…and that’s diet coke!

Every single morning I have prayed Psalm 141:3

Set a guard over my mouth, Lord; keep watch over the door of my lips.{Psalm 141:3}

It occurred to me that maybe this was so easy because it is God saying no, not me.  Every morning I have handed Him control of what goes in my mouth.  Prayer works!  I knew that of course, but this seems such an unimportant thing.  Why on earth would God care whether I eat chocolate or not.  He may…or He may not.  But I am certain He cares about the parts of me I give over to Him.  He particularly cares about my relationship with Him.  And He cares that He is King of my life.

My God is King {Psalm 93:1}

I remember when Charlotte stopped battling us over her clothing choices.  Gary and I rejoiced that day.  Peace returned to our house.  Gary felt respected.  Charlotte felt loved.  For months it felt like a battle of wills between father and daughter.  Both chose their relationship over the rather arbitrary clothing issue.  Ever since that day Gary has worked hard to understand his sometimes confusing daughter, whilst Charlotte has worked hard at giving her daddy grace.  She now understands that she is growing up far quicker than Gary can keep up, and often he just needs time to readjust.  Grace.  Relationship.  Love.  Relationship….

For it is God who works in you, both to will and to work for his good pleasure {Philippians 2:13}

God is in the business of relationship and what He offers is so much greater than we could ever get from whatever we are addicted to.  When I chose to be guided by God, I accepted the work Jesus did on the cross and those chains are now broken.  His blood has broken the chains.  His blood.  Not me.  I did nothing.  I do nothing bar handing over this love-hate relationship I have with sugar every. single. day.  I am choosing to put it all at the foot of the cross.  I am choosing to put my relationship with God ahead of my relationship with sugar….and it is glorious.  I completely, one hundred percent believe He is protecting me right now from side effects, from cravings, from weakness, from seeking refuge in food.

God is a shield to all who trust  {Psalm 18:30}

Obviously it is far too early to say I am cured, if in deed an addict ever is cured.  I have been doing a study on David.  David who was called ‘A man after God’s own heart’ and yet who spent just as much time away from God as he did seeking God:

After removing Saul, he made David their king. God testified concerning him: ‘I have found David son of Jesse, a man after my own heart; he will do everything I want him to do.’ {Acts 13:22}

I find David’s life interesting.  It is clear he is a man who knows about the strength of a living God, and yet is as weak as the weakest man.  But there is a pattern to his life which we can learn from.  When he keeps his eye on God, his giants stumble (literally and metaphorically); when he takes his eyes off God, he is the one who stumbles.  I am experiencing this.  Day in and day out, if I keep my eyes on God, if I pray his power over this area of my life, the sugar crumbles.  Well, actually it’s the addiction which crumbles.  I have had no side effects, no cravings I can’t deal with and I am finding a no sugar life to be astonishingly easy.

I have never really drunk alcohol.  It was never difficult saying no to it because I had seen first hand just how dangerous and destructive it can be.  When I go out, I don’t feel left out; my friends don’t nag or push me to drink it and to be honest it is so much a part of me that I don’t give it a moment’s thought.  And for the first time in my entire life I feel like this is a possibility with sugar.  If I just keep praying Psalm 141:3 over me every morning, if I just keep my focus on God, if I keep on keeping on saying no……one day I will forget it was ever an issue.  It will become second nature to say no.  I won’t gaze longingly at it, my mouth won’t water at the sight of it…in fact there will simply be no reaction to it.  For the first time in my entire life, I believe this to be a possibility.

I will keep my eyes on Jesus and will continue not to give sugar any thinking time…and one day I will indeed be free.

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