Food addict. It’s true. And no, I am not trying to be funny. I really do have a food addiction. I didn’t always know that was what it was, but now I do.
I have experienced a lot in my life that left me feeling empty and unworthy. Some of this I have shared on my blog, and some of it I will share when God gives me the go-ahead to do so.
When one hears the word “addiction,” most think of alcohol, drugs, or perhaps even cigarettes as substances to which people become addicted. I doubt food typically enters their minds. It certainly would not have been something I would have thought of until I learned that I was addicted to it myself.
Some may laugh to think of food as an addiction, but I can assure you it is no laughing matter. I have struggled with food issues and my weight my entire life. I was a little on the chubby side as a child. I developed early. Most of my friends had no shape while I had curves.
In high school, I was quite thin, but at the time, I thought I was fat. I used to go on crash diets where I would not eat for 4-5 days at the time. I would drink only water. I would lose about 7-8 pounds, and then I would start eating again. This system of starving myself eventually backfired, and the last time I did it, when I tried to start eating again, I couldn’t keep the food down. My body eventually recovered, but it could have been a lot worse.
When I was 20, I went through something extremely traumatic. I did not recover from that event for 12 years. Within the first year after it happened, I had gained 40 pounds. Food was my source of solace. It was the only thing over which I had any control. Or at least I felt I had the illusion of control because clearly control was something I did not have.
Over the next 7 years or so, I gained another 15-20 pounds. All during this time, I struggled with trying to lose weight. I tried Slim Fast. I did Weight Watchers five or six different times. I cried out to God in my anguish and unhappiness to help me. Nothing ever seemed to work. Any progress I made was always short-lived, and I would eventually end up right where I had begun.
You see, I was dead on the inside. God never left me, but I had left Him. I went through the motions, but I was a wreck. I was miserable. I hated myself. I was filled with self-loathing. I felt fat and ugly. I wanted to be thinner, but instead I ate. And when I ate, I hated myself even more for giving in to the temptation that was, if you’ll pardon the expression, “feeding” the very thing that I despised so much. It was like a merry-go-round that I couldn’t get off of.
At the age of 32, I experienced God’s healing from the tragic event that occurred at age 20. Sometime after that, I began to look at my weight situation and my eating again. I once again cried out to God. It was at that time that God revealed to me that the reason I had never been able to experience much success in this area was because I had an addiction. He told me to confess my addiction and repent of it. I did just that and asked God to help me overcome it. For the first time ever, I felt hope that perhaps things could change.
And, praise His Holy Name, they have. I won’t tell you that I don’t still struggle. I do. As a matter of fact, I am struggling right now. Perhaps I always will. I don’t know. I have an addiction. I know that God has the power to heal me instantaneously if He so chooses. Maybe He will. Maybe He won’t. Either way, I know that I must ask Him daily to help me overcome it. I cannot do it alone. If I try to do so, I fail.
Whatever your struggle today, ask Him to help you. He wants you to ask, and He wants to answer. He may not do so in the way that you would like or think that He should, but however He answers, it will be for your best and for His glory.