For this blog I want to tell you a story. It’s not my story. This is the story of a very special client of mine. This is a woman who had a lifelong addiction to food and has been morbidly obese for over 20 years. Food was filling a hole in her life that only God could truly fill. When she chose to deal with her food addiction head on, she won! Below is her story, in her own words. (Let’s call her, Client “WOW”)
In 2008 I was diagnosed with Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome and pre-diabetes. I was told that I would be a full diabetic before the age of 40 if I did not change my lifestyle immediately. My deepest wish was to have another baby, but my weight was literally crushing that dream.
I was seriously considering Gastric Bypass surgery when Angela approached me about taking her health class. I can say that I was skeptical, since I had lost count how many times I had tried to lose weight. But thought I would give it a try, after all I was desperate and what’s one more diet right?
I began a journey that day that has changed mine and my family’s lives forever. By making the changes in my lifestyle I began losing weight and regaining my health. By September 2009 I found out I was pregnant. However due to a hidden infection, my daughter was born 4 months early at 1 pound 14 ounces. So my life and my health goals halted for the next two years while I dealt with all the issues surrounding a micro-preemie.
In February of this year I realized that my now two year old daughter was very healthy and very active and I was not. I had let my old unhealthy habits take over again. I had my baby, but if I didn’t go back to the lessons I had learned I would never live to see her grow up!
I purged my home, my life and my head of the unhealthy addictions that had regained their foothold in my life. I have now lost 100 pounds with 80 more to go. I have never felt as healthy as I am now in my entire life.
As most of you know I like to use a physical analogy to look at a spiritual issue. Let’s look at this story as an example of true REPENTANCE.
Unfortunately many believers don’t understand the true process of repentance. To repent means: to change one's mind for better, heartily to amend with abhorrence of one's past sins. Repentance and saying “I’m sorry” are not the same thing.
For an extreme example think of a woman who is about to have an abortion. If she “repents” then she has a change of mind and decides NOT to abort the baby. She changes her mind and with action she chooses life for the baby. If she is only “sorry”, her action does not change and the baby’s life is not saved.
Think about Client “WOW”’s story. For much of her life she was in bondage to food. She was a slave to diets and a slave to much sickness and disease. She was very “sorry” that she was overweight and unhealthy but as long as she was only sorry nothing changed in her life. When Client “WOW” became repentant her actions followed. As she said, she purged her home, her life and her head. She “turned” from “sin” and started DOING the right thing. The fruit of her life now shows it!
Matthew 3:8- Therefore bear fruits worthy of repentance.
According to the Holy Scripture, if you have truly repented then you will have fruits/actions to show for it.
One final word on repentance that is pretty hard to hear.
James 5:16 Confess your trespasses to one another, and pray for one another, that you may be healed.
OUCH! Confess your sins to one another? But I don’t want anyone to know the ugly secrets of my heart! Why does God ask us to confess to one another? I believe that it holds us accountable. Client “WOW” confessed her food addiction to me and I held her accountable during the times of temptation. I can’t imagine how hard it was for her to be so honest. As hard as it was I know she would tell you the accountability was worth it for the freedom she has now gained.
So to sum it all up, repentance is about three things.
1. Changing your mind/heart
2. Changing your actions
3. Confession and accountability
Then . . . He whom the Son sets free is truly free indeed!