Just thinking more on this: Need to define our terms
The world uses terms of hunger and cravings - physical and mental - the videos from the "experts" are helpful in making a distinction. And I can see the differences between the two. But they do not give any real strategy to deal with the cravings.
The Bible uses terms of hunger and lusts - physical and spiritual/mental - this is also helpful in that we can understand that there is a real difference between being hungry (like Jesus was hungry after fasting for 40 days - Luke 4:2) and the lusting for foods (like Proverbs 23:2-3).
"And put a knife to your throat If you are a man given to appetite. Do not desire his delicacies, For they are deceptive food." Proverbs 23:2-3 (NKJV)
As we apply the Gospel, we find real solutions for those "lusts" that have been crucified with Christ.
"And those who are Christ's have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires. If we live in the Spirit, let us also walk in the Spirit." Galatians 5:24-25 (NKJV)
Then by faith, we put on the Lord Jesus, coming to the Cross and walk away from those lusts.
"Let us walk properly, as in the day, not in revelry and drunkenness, not in lewdness and lust, not in strife and envy. But put on the Lord Jesus Christ, and make no provision for the flesh, to fulfill its lusts." Romans 13:13-14 (NKJV)
This was very well said, Bill.
The world only knows physical and mental/emotional. They lack understanding of the spiritual (sinful lusts) and therefore cannot see the cross of Christ as the solution. Consequently they are only able to recommend distractions, thinking other thoughts, connecting with other people, etc. which are not life changing or transformative, but temporary bandaids on a deep wound that only Christ can heal.
As we read in 1 Peter 2, "When they hurled their insults at him, he did not retaliate; when he suffered, he made no threats. Instead, he entrusted himself to him who judges justly. 24 “He himself bore our sins” in his body on the cross, so that we might die to sins and live for righteousness; “by his wounds you have been healed.”25 For “you were like sheep going astray,” but now you have returned to the Shepherd and Overseer of your souls." Christ suffered so that we might be healed.
The solution is not just in thinking other thoughts or distracting ourselves from the cravings of our flesh. If it were that easy then Jesus didn't need to die. But Jesus did die and rise again to heal us. His body was broken for us and His blood was poured out for us. He feeds us with Himself so that we can turn from our temporary cravings and instead enjoy eternal delights.
Wow .. what an amazing and beautiful thought: that before we are anything, we are gifts to the Son, from the Father .. and before us is laid out a banquet of what satisfies our souls. I desire the Bread of life over the bread that molds, and I am so very grateful to my Father for choosing me as a gift to Christ, and to Christ for taking the cup so I could have the Bread of Life!
Psalm 63 "O God, You are my God; I shall seek You earnestly; My soul thirsts for You, my flesh yearns for You, In a dry and weary land where there is no water. Thus I have seen You in the sanctuary, To see Your power and Your glory. Because Your loving kindness is better than life, My lips will praise You. So I will bless You as long as I live; I will lift up my hands in Your name. My soul is satisfied as with marrow and fatness, And my mouth offers praises with joyful lips.
@Sandy-Willoughby Hi Sandy! Well I ate the cheeseburger! Actually I’ve had two now. I feel good that I’m not being held to any defined rules about my eating anymore. I want to truly be led by the Holy Spirit and not to any legalistic, worldly ways. I want that freedom. I pray for help every day, that I eat what I should, when I should and how much I should. I want to glorify God in my eating. Some days are better than others. I’m praying for both of us, that we will have victory in Jesus! I hope you have a great weekend!
That is what I thought would be a good idea - I mentioned it to a couple of others taking this course. We are in this thing together so even though we aren't mentors, we can cheer each other on, discuss things and pray for each other!
Waiting for an actual growling stomach has helped so much! Now I understand that having to question if I am hungry is the answer to my question. If I am asking myself if Im hungry then no, im not hungry, im just wanting to eat. But if I wait then I will experience a no doubt about it hunger. Now I know what to wait on. This is a feeling I have never liked before. I hated being hungry. Now I enjoy it. Knowing I now have permission to eat. This is very freeing! No more having to question when I should eat!
@Jackie-Carpenter Welcome Jackie! The current Weight Loss course has been completely rewritten with a focus on the gospel – the death and resurrection of Jesus.
I am so glad that you want to have your eyes focused on Christ as it says in these verses:
*Since you were raised from the dead with Christ, aim at what is in heaven, where Christ is sitting at the right hand of God. Think only about the things in heaven, not the things on earth. Your old sinful self has died, and your new life is kept with Christ in God. Christ is your life, and when he comes again, you will share in his glory. Colossians 3:1-4
And let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us, fixing our eyes on Jesus, the pioneer and perfecter of faith. Hebrews 12:1-2*
There are so many things in the world today – ‘things on earth’ - that we can focus on – diet programs and behavioral techniques to name just two. However, we are told to put our attention not on these but on what Christ has done for us: when Jesus was hung on the wooden tree, He died for our sin, our old sinful life died with Him and then we were raised from the dead in Christ and now sit with Christ at the right hand of God. Now this is something to gaze at in wonder and awe! And Jackie when we do this, our hearts start to worship Jesus in adoration and we experience the power of the cross to break the power of gluttony in our lives.
@Lesley-Lezcano Hi Lesley. Our group meets weekly and there are 6-8 women who attend pretty faithfully. I used the online Group Leader's Guide, which is a work in progress, but that outline did not work as well for us. The women (aged 28-66) wanted to talk about lessons that meant the most to them, struggles they are having, how they are growing spiritually, truths that are new to them and that have amazed them. I ask them to note at least 1 point or sentence or truth that jumped out at them from each lesson to share at the next meeting. Our first meeting was the night before everyone started the lessons so that I could orient them to this class that is NOTHING like any weight loss class they have ever taken. I used some of the material from the first lesson in the Leader's Guide and also gave part of my testimony. One student is using the physical Weight Loss book but the others are using the online study. We meet on Tuesdays so they were a few lessons in when I saw most of them at church. They were so excited with what they were learning! And amazed at how simple (although not "easy") God's plan is. Our next meeting was great. We pray before starting and pray again before leaving, being more specific related to the issues discussed. I am accountability partner for 2 of the students. I am very new to mentoring and it's been interesting to see how differently everyone reacts, copes and perseveres with the lessons. I usually start the class, after prayer, with a question that everyone is invited to answer. I try to frame it from one of the lessons of the past week. My goal is to listen and always guide them back to the cross, to Christ Who died so that we can be free from this body of sin. We meet for an hour but could easily use 2 or 3! It has proven to be a time of accountability, encouragement and growth. The ladies want to start the lessons over again when we've finished. I hope this helps somewhat. God Bless!
@Callista-Luney Welcome! At the start of approaching this new way of eating - waiting to eat until one is truly physically hungry - I also found there were different digestive noises, feelings of hunger, and pangs to sort through! I am constantly amazed at how wonderfully and fearfully God has made our bodies Callista (Psalm 139:14). When we wait for longer periods between meals (noting that a small light breakfast in the morning is advised), you will find the clear hunger alert later in the day (most commonly a tummy growl) that indicates to you that your body has assimilated the food in your stomach from the previous meal. And you asked : 'how do I fix that?' It is how we wait to eat that is important by looking at Christ Crucified and Risen where we find the power of the cross to overcome our struggles. We come to the foot of the cross of Jesus Christ and turn our eyes from worrying about eating and what foods to eat and when. We spend time with our friend and Savior Jesus asking Him to open our hearts wide to receive His love pouring from His pierced heart for us. He thirsted and hungered on the cross so that we would never need to be spiritually hungry and thirsty again (John 4:13). He emptied Himself at Calvary so we would be filled with His fullness. When Jesus cried out "It is finished!", He gave up His spirit so that we receive the Holy Spirit Who leads us, and guides us surely through life.
John 6:35 Then Jesus declared, “I am the bread of life. Whoever comes to me will never go hungry, and whoever believes in me will never be thirsty.
I am praying Callista that you would "know the love of Christ that surpasses knowledge, that you may be filled with all the fullness of God," Ephesians 3:19
Question: How do I eat this way with a family? I'm not hungry when they need to eat, or I'm hungry when they aren't.
Jody Cleveland answers: As a wife and mother, I understand this struggle very well. Here are some ideas that have helped me through the years. If I needed to feed my children, but I myself was not hungry, I would prepare their food and then read to them while they ate. They loved it. If I was preparing a meal for my husband and children, but I myself was not hungry, I would prepare the meal for the family, but for myself, I would have a cup of tea or other beverage and just keep them company while they ate. We can always fix a plate for ourselves and save to eat when we are hungry.
Bill Miller adds: There is value in this approach from a teaching standpoint also, helping our family to see the joy of waiting to eat until hungry. If the children ask, “Dad, why are you not eating?” I reply that I am waiting for my tummy to tell me it is time to eat. God made us and gave us little signals in our tummies telling us when it’s time to eat. I am waiting for the “grumblies” in my tummy, like Pooh Bear.”