Did you hear? The Deliberate Women team will now be writing devotionals and blogs each week that follow a similar theme. If you haven’t had the chance to read this week’s devotional entries by Mandy, I encourage you to go here and read them before reading today’s blog post.
I [Ginny] stood over the toilet, shaking. I was tired of being fat. Tired of the guys ignoring me. Tired of feeling like a whale in a sea of skinny college girls. This seemed like the only way I could finally get control over my out-of-control binge eating. I would just “take care of it.” I had spent all day thinking about it, reading about how to do it, and finally, I mustered up the courage to go to the bathroom in the basement of my dorm and stick my fingers down my throat.
I thought I would feel freedom. I thought it would fix me. But things only got worse. Within a week of my first purge, I was binging and purging a dozen or more times a day. I became more isolated, and I could only focus on the next food I would eat and remove from my body. My relationships suffered, and I my emotions were all over the chart.
It scared the living daylights out of me. I thought I had control. Instead, the beast called bulimia had taken its grip over me and had control over me. I didn’t lose any weight. I just gained puffy cheeks and a sore throat.
But I couldn’t stop.
For nearly a decade, I fought the battle against my eating disorder. I went to support groups, counselors, and my husband did everything in his might to help me. I was ashamed because I couldn’t stop, because I lied to my husband regularly about the grocery store bills, and because I didn’t see how I could possibly find freedom.
I kept it a secret. I didn’t want anyone to know because they would see how broken I was. They would think I was less of a person. They might feel weird about me when we eat together.
At that point, I had tried almost everything, but there was one thing I hadn’t tried.
I hadn’t surrendered my struggle to the Lord.
I hadn’t been honest with Him.
But just like Jesus, in John 4, knew the Samaritan woman at the well’s secret even though she had skated around the truth, He knew my secret. He knew my desire to defeat this monster. However, I had let my desire for control become my god and hadn’t let God take control.
Jesus revealed himself to the woman as her Messiah. He didn’t have to talk with her or associate with her. He knew how deep into sin she was. However, he still showed her grace and mercy.
When I finally got honest with God and told Him that I couldn’t do anymore, but I knew He could save me from my eating disorder, I began the long process of healing. He led me to an excellent counselor who helped me understand more about what I was dealing with, He gave me friends who opened up about their issues with eating, He helped me understand my addiction to sugar, and He carried me during the days I didn’t feel strong enough to resist the binge or the purge.
It has been several years since my last purge. I still struggle with overeating, but now, instead of trying to fight it on my own, I know that God is with me. I just need to turn to Him, and He can give me the strength to make it through each day.
I love the moment in the story about the woman at the well when she ran to the others in town, and without shame, she shared what had just happened while also proclaiming the sins Jesus knew about her. Here was a woman who came to the well at the most inopportune time of day to avoid others, who had committed great sin, and yet she understood the love of Christ and threw all shame aside to share the great news to others.
Like the woman, I am filled with hope, and now I want to proclaim to all of you that Jesus is Messiah. He knows we are broken. He knows our secrets. Yet He loves us and wants to redeem us and set us free.
My challenge for you today is to turn to the Lord in whatever situation you find yourself today. You are not beyond God’s gift of grace. I thought that I was. I thought there wasn’t any hope. He proved me wrong.
Then proclaim your story of healing and grace with others. God used an incredibly broken Samaritan woman to bring others to Him. HER STORY was filled with pain, brokenness and many wrong choices. But her story wasn't over there. It turned into one full of forgiveness and redemption when Christ spoke with her at the well. And because of her courage to share it, others came to know Christ and are now in the Kingdom of Heaven.
Certainly, He can use you in amazing ways, too. He can use even the most broken among us to bring others to Christ. But you need to choose to surrender your situation to Him and then let Him use your story to impact others. Will you have the courage to do that?