Growing Closer To God

I have to say that this book is definitely challenging me in ways I wasn’t entirely sure I was prepared for.  But as I’m digging in, I am realizing not only am I ready, I need it more than ever!

As long as I can remember, I’ve been a spiritual person.  Even as a kid, I loved Sunday School, youth group, singing in the choir.  I love reading the Bible, doing Bible studies with ladies at church, I loved being involved and embraced by my church family.  I decided while I was in high school to seek out a new church when my family had been basically kicked out of our church home after my parents had been divorced.  It didn’t make sense to me why all that could happen when we weren’t supposed to judge each other, but anyway, I made a decision and found a church I loved and studied and became a member myself as a senior in high school.

After having my kids, I reignited my love of all things church.  Joined the choir again, got them into the nursery and kids programs, ended up finding a new church closer to our new home and joined a new thing called the praise team.  Bible studies and  Sunday School were back to being a part of our regular routine which satisfied my heart so much!  But lately as my kids have grown out of that season and are now doing their own thing (I won’t push them, it’s their spiritual journey at this point, but I do pray for them every day) I have also gotten out of the habit of regular church attendance.  I’m still a part of the worship team, but some months I’m not on the calendar as much, and therefore I find myself not attending on my weeks off… which is starting to show in how I feel.  I know I have to change that… and I am committing to attending even on the weeks I’m not leading, except I’ll be out of town this weekend.  So yeah, this book is challenging me in ways I wasn’t entirely prepared for, but I’ll get there.

I did a study a few years ago about the fruit of the Spirit.  If you don’t know what that means, it’s time for you to read the New Testament book of Galatians.  Specifically chapter 5.  We have freedom in Christ.  If we give our burdens to Him, HE will set us free!  I believe that He can take away our desires for unhealthy food cravings.  Yes, He loves us that much!  He is calling us to be close to Himself.  For that to happen, we need to cast off anything or anyone who gets in our way.  For me that can also mean getting rid of those unhealthy habits.  Things that keep us from closeness to God need to be avoided, rather we need to be focused on the fruit of the Spirit… the healthy things God wants for our lives.

“But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control.”  That last one gets me!  I have good control when it comes to my physical workouts, but my mental and emotional things have slacked lately.  I’m changing that, and it’s challenging me.  It’s also helping me realize that my food choices can either honor God or put a wall up between myself and Him, it’s completely up to me.

I’ve turned my heart and my choices back to God.  It’s bringing me back to a closer relationship with God.  It’s reigniting my passion for His word.  It’s giving me freedom from food cravings that were taking over and leading me back down an unhealthy path.  I’m not perfect.  I don’t have to be.  I just have to focus, pray, and live according to His desire for my life.

And that, my friends, feels more amazing than the numbers on the scale!

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