Sunday, February 26, 2017

Quitting Coffee Again...the difference is Night and Day!

Watch this clip from one of my new favorite movies, Knight and Day. This is how I laughingly picture God talking to me in the experience I want to share with you below...

Hi everyone,
I just had to share the latest in my adventures with God and my body! So, if you have read my blogs about my food, you know that I began a journey back in August where I began to surrender control over my eating and trust God to lead me with my body and food. This January 1st I attempted to cut coffee and all sugars from my diet. It did not go well. I bombed hard after 12 days. So fast forward a few weeks and I am still struggling over wither or not to keep coffee and fruit in my diet. I had talked with a few friends who mentioned that they were cutting out fruit as well as all other kinds of carbs. The thought made me grumpy and you all know where I was on the coffee. But still I wasn't feeling great, my stomach was still hurting, and my energy levels were awful. I was using coffee every afternoon to get through the bewitching hour of kids coming home from school through the routines of homework, activities, dinner, and bedtime.

Finally, it occurred to me that I had said I was going to trust God to tell me what to do for me. I realized I hadn't asked Him.

So, February 2nd,  I sat at my kitchen table with my journal,a cup of coffee,and my bible and I wrote out my questions to the Lord.
And waiting to hear His response.
 I like to write down what I hear the Lord say to me, so I am copying exactly what we said to each other that day.

Me:"Do you want me to stop drinking coffee? "

                The Lord: "Child, are you depending on it to get you through the day?
Me: yes
               The Lord: Is it healthy psychologically?
Me: umm, no.
               The Lord:"It is making your tummy feel good?"
Me: no
               The Lord:"Do you feel emotional resistance to giving it up?"
Me: YES!
               The Lord: "Will you trust Me and give it to Me?"
Me: " I don't want to , Jesus! WAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAA!"
               The Lord: "Remember I said I would withhold no good thing from you. My anointing is on                  you to do this. You failed last time because you tried to do it without ME. But I am teaching                    you I am for You and You can do it."
Me: But I'll be so unhappy...I'll have headaches and no energy....Can't you just make me hate the taste?"
               The Lord: " 😉I could, but I choose this way. Will you trust Me?"
Me:"But what can I have instead?"
               The Lord,"Trust Me."
Me: When can I have it back?
              The Lord: "Trust Me."
Me: "I'm really weak Abba, I need You to give me a boundary of days."
              The Lord: "Here Daughter, take one last sip of that cup you just made, then I am asking you to               give me the coffee to hold until your birthday. on that day we will re-convene on the matter."
Me:" ok"

I want you to understand the gentleness of His Spirit as He asked me to do this. It was very similar to a story I heard during a Women's retreat many years ago about a little girl and her fake pearls. The little girl loved her fake pearls and wore them always, even to bed. Every night when her Daddy kissed her good night, he would ask her for the pearls. She always laughed and said no way! But finally one night she agreed to give them to her Daddy and in return he pulled out a strand of real pearls he had been carrying around waiting to give her. So this is the way I felt God's heart  towards me, as He asked me to give Him my coffee. He knew how much coffee meant to me.

So what happened, You see up there that I agreed. I took one more sip and then I dumped my coffee out. But the next morning, I took back the coffee. I just couldn't do it. I was so grumpy about having to give up one more thing that I loved. And do you know, the Lord did not strike me dead. Instead, He gently pursued me like this:

Feb.3rd I received a surprise package in the mail. It was an adorable gift box from my friend Leanne and inside it was TEA! It was a cardboard box that contained photos of us over the years, her sweet note, and a graphic that said, "Sip Joyfully". I immediately thought, God, this better not be a sign that you really want me to give you the coffee. Then I thanked my sweet friend and went on my coffee sipping merry way.

But Feb 4th, feeling bored, restless, grumpy and unconnected, I had another conversation with God.
And it went like this:
Me: I'm tired. Lord, I'm kinda scared to enter into conversation with You right now after the other day...did I hear right or wrong? have I disobeyed drinking coffee?
are you angry with me?
            The Lord: Daughter, I am not angry with you. I just want you to know I'm willing to take your               "fake" pearls and give you real ones. "

Me: "I'm such a mess!"
But I was not ready to surrender.

Feb 5th found me at church. In our class we were wrapping up a series from Andy Stanley on making Wise Choices. These words he said pierced my spirit.
"The Goal isn't to just know what I should do, but then to DO it."
"We easily trust in the laws of this earth: ie: physics, gravity, etc, yet we struggle to submit to the Creator of it all."
"A wise decision comes from submission to the Author of Life."
"Sometimes to understand why, you have to submit to apply."
We ended the lesson with this question:
Have I surrendered my will to God's will?
And there we were again.
 I realized that I had taken back my surrender. That I had stopped surrendering to God my body and food like I had told Him I would. No wonder I was struggling. Still I wrestled with the surrender all that afternoon and into the evening. Right before bed I was googling Adrenal fatigue...we all know how smart it is to be randomly googling your ailments before! Yet, God arranged for my search to land me on a site that had the testimony of a woman saying everything fell into place for her with her physical issues when she gave up coffee.
 And that was the straw that broke this donkey's back! I got up Monday morning, drank tea instead of coffee and I have not looked back since.

 It will be 3 weeks tomorrow since I had coffee. Have I missed it? only a couple of times.
Honestly, my experience this time is Night and Day different from those 12 days in January. The first day, I was tired and had a headache but then starting the 2nd day until now, I have had more energy and more clarity and my stomach has felt so much better. I cannot even express the improvement in how I feel! And naturally, as with any relationship, when you trust someone and follow their instruction, it brings you closer together.

 God is so so good and He is so so kind.
 If you don't get from this story anything else, get this:
           The God who made us and this whole world, not only loves us each in very personal real to life ways, but He also is long suffering with our ignorance and stubbornness. He pursues us with such love and care.

Romans 2:4 says
"Or do you show contempt for the riches of his kindness, forbearance and patience, not realizing that God's kindness is intended to lead you to repentance?"

Consider for a moment, can you see a place in your life where God is gently, lovingly, and relentlessly pursuing you to surrender to Him?

If I know Him, He is.
And if I know Him, its for your good.
So learn from one stubborn donkey...surrender its always worth it!