It was 1994 or 1995, and I was glued to the television screen as I watched Tracey Gold share her struggle with anorexia. At the time, I, too, had been struggling with an eating disorder. Like most people who are going through an emotional/psychological struggle, you often feel alone and feel like you’re the only one going through it. But as I watched Tracey, I was surprised that she, a Hollywood celebrity, could share my feelings of inferiority and feeling “just not good enough.” Now that I’m older, it seems silly as many of us have come to think of many Hollywood stars as the most narcissistic and insecure people. But at the time, her thoughts, feelings resonated with me…that is, until she said, (and I’m paraphrasing) that you really never completely heal from an eating disorder…how it’s always with you…and how, like many addictions, it’s something you’ll battle for the rest of your life.
As soon as she said those words, something deep in me rejected her words immediately. I recalled the happy-go-lucky teenager I had been just a few years ago who was naturally thin, who never had to watch what she ate, who never really thought about food except when she was hungry. But somehow my insecurities and my narcissistic attempt at perfection eventually led me down a path, where, like JMathis, I began counting every calorie and focused all my thoughts on food, exercise, and watching the scale. This wasn’t me! This couldn’t be God’s plan for my life! As I heard Tracey share her thoughts about eating disorders being a permanent struggle, something inside me arose, and I said audibly and forcibly declared, ‘No! I refuse to believe that God can’t completely heal me to the point where I will no longer struggle with this.” I knew in my heart of hearts that God, if He wanted to, could return me to that person whose thoughts didn’t continually and obsessively focus on food and calories. He had made the lame to walk and brought the dead back to life. He could heal me as well. I knew it, and I believed it.
It didn’t happen overnight…but praise God, He did eventually restore me to wholeness once again. He not only healed me, but he restored me to the point where food and counting calories were no longer an issue. At least no more than it was before I had started down that path. I knew later that moment where I knew and believed God could and would heal me was crucial in my healing.
AbbyA calls it self-talk. But what are you telling yourself about whatever body issues you are struggling with? Do you believe healing and restoration are possible?
If not, I want to remind you that no matter how many years you’ve struggled, God can bring you back to wholeness.
Just then a woman who had been subject to bleeding for twelve years came up behind him and touched the edge of his cloak. She said to herself, “If I only touch his cloak, I will be healed.” Jesus turned and saw her. “Take heart, daughter,” he said, “your faith has healed you.” And the woman was healed from that moment. Matthew 9:20-22