Showing posts with label imperfection. Show all posts
Showing posts with label imperfection. Show all posts

Thursday, June 11, 2015

Reclaiming Myself

Two years ago I ran a local 5K. I had spent a year and a half prior to that learning how to eat properly and exercise. I declared war on our pantry and cleared out all the processed and refined foods and baking ingredients and replaced every item with it's clean counterpart. Back then, it was much harder to find whole or organic foods in our area, so I found myself making many items from scratch. That equaled an inordinate amount of time in the kitchen, but, I was determined and I quickly learned how to make salad dressings, ketchup, granola, crackers, cookies and tons of other necessities, all with clean and organic ingredients. I lost weight by eating God-given foods and exercising, I lost twenty five pounds over time, and kept it off, all the while enjoying delicious foods and baked goods. I discovered that I could even enjoy homemade breads and sweets without gaining a pound as long as I made these items with organic, unprocessed ingredients and kept to a regular plan of exercising. My body was in a good place.

So what happened? Why did I gradually stop buying whole foods and exercising? Life. You know, it gets busy sometimes and we become unbalanced and one weak moment at the grocery turned into two, until one day I realized that my cart was full of the very foods that I'd admonished from our home not so long before. I know that my weakness is food, coupled with a sometimes lazy tendency, which over time resulted in the wrong foods creeping back into our kitchen. The lure of aisle after aisle of processed foods at the store that promise goodness and preparation at lightening speed, became so enticing that I took the bait. Are you seeing Eve in the Garden of Eden contemplating taking a bite of that apple, yeah, me too. 

Food is the key to our health, it's so simple really, what we put in our bodies determines how we look and feel. I've always been convinced that how I treated my past weight loss is the reason it didn't last. At first, I was all thank you God and without you God I couldn't have accomplished all this, then that gradually morphed into something else entirely. As people began noticing that I not only looked better but that I had a new found confidence and energy to go along with my new look, they would compliment my efforts, a lot.   It didn't take too long before those compliments went to my head and I started to feel very proud  of myself. I was a peacock fluffing my feathers for anyone that would take notice. I became an attention hog living from one, you look great to the next how did you lose all that weight. Rather than answering, God was my co-pilot, I would start into a listing of my prowess at the grocery and how long and far I could run. I began to carry my weight loss around like a medal that I  had achieved, just me, all on my own, and the thank you God's, began to all but disappear. 

I truly believe that God was saddened at how I handled the gift he had given me. He was saddened and disappointed at how I wasted my testimony. For this reason, I know in my heart that my weight crept back up and I stopped exercising all together. There is always a price to pay for sin, always.

But this is my favorite part of the story, I'm still here, God's still there, and I've learned from my mistake. My pantry is all clean, again, I'm exercising, again, becoming a runner, again, eating God-given foods, again. I love that little word, again.  That little word means hope, that little word means grace, that little word means that God is there and cheering me on as I pull myself back up by my bootstraps and start fresh, that little word is helping me to reclaim myself

Monday, March 23, 2015

Warts And All {embracing imperfection}

I struggle to find a balance between perfection and imperfection. Do you sometimes too? Do you not have friends over because your house isn't clean enough or because you don't like the peeling wallpaper in the guest bathroom or the chewed up table leg {curses on your dog}. What would people think? Would they leave your house murmuring and mumbling about 'why in the world would she invite us over before tidying up that mess?'. You promise yourself that as soon as you get new wallpaper or repair that table leg or scrub those floors, that then, then, you'll have people over.

I come to you several times a week and talk about all kinds of stuff, lots of intentional living stuff, embracing stuff, living in the moment stuff, hospitality stuff, but you know what, I struggle too. I feel like I can't have folks come over and hang out because, it's not all clean enough. Whoa. That's hypocritical.

When I'm in this depression season of mine, life as I know it comes to a screeching halt. I'm sitting amongst a jar filled with valentine's candy, and a chalkboard that says, 'In the meadow we can build a snowman', not an Easter bunny or daffodil in sight. So I go into lock-down. No one's coming over until I get things back on track, translation, p-e-r-f-e-c-t. Really????? That's ridiculous. You know what that means? It means that I think very little of my friends. It means that I don't have any value for myself either. It means that I think they are only coming over for some type of 'sensory experience', only coming to oooooh and ahhhhh at my seasonal change-ups and to marvel at my cleaning skills. 

That's not intentional living, that's not living at all. If you find yourself right where I am, embrace imperfection. How quickly I forget, it's only March and I hardly remember my word for the year, EMBRACE.  Love on people right where you are and  right where they are. I can totally promise you that if they come over in the midst of your mess and love you, they are true friends, if they are murmuring on their way out the door, you might want to re-evaluate that friendship.

So all these photos...... real life, right now, sometimes messy, sometimes dysfunctional, totally imperfect, just like me. And in case you are wondering, I am having friends over this week in the midst of it all, it's me, it's my life right now, and I know that my friends love me and all my imperfections, it's way past time for me to trust and love them too. I'm learning to embrace imperfection,  care to join me?

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