No sugar for 2017.
I decided to jump on the no-sugar-for-me bandwagon at the start of 2017. I haven’t made it that big of a deal in my blog writing because I have been so jazzed with what I am doing with my hope study this year.
Yet, here I am.
It’s day #50.
So far so good.
I haven’t indulged in one granule of sugar.
I haven’t snuck one chocolate chip.
I haven’t savored one home-made cinnamon roll.
I haven’t enjoyed one slice of Micah’s birthday pumpkin pie.
I haven’t eaten one sliver of Happy Valentine’s cake.
I haven’t treated myself to one brownie or two.
Nor have I yielded when my emotions flared and my temptations propositioned: “You know, you’d feel better, Heather, if you had a handful of chocolate chips….you know you would.”
But, I didn’t.
And I haven’t.
For 50 days, I have held to my conviction to go a full 365 days without sugar.
This decision wasn’t about losing weight. Although I admit, that would be a great side benefit. This decision wasn’t about joining the ‘sugar-is-bad-for-you’ wave. Although, too much sugar is definitely not healthy for anyone.
No, my decision is centered upon going to a deeper level of trust with my God. As I have shared, I’ve used sugary sweets – particularly chocolate – to anesthetize myself; especially when I am hit with stress or when I feel overwhelmed with any kind of emotion; anger, worry, slight, sadness, etc. As a result, I have identified an area of my heart and my life that I want to fully submit to my God. I don’t want any circumstance and the emotions that follow to prevent me from seeking my God first – no matter what is happening in my personal life, in my family life, and/or in my missionary life – for His good and just purpose.
It’s no wonder I’ve chosen ‘hope’ as my theme for 2017.
Instead of succumbing to the soothing and comforting temptation of chocolate decadence, I am choosing to embrace the empowering strength of hope that is found in my Lord and Savior.
Thus, 50 days into this no-sugar life choice, coupled with a decision to lean fully upon the hope of my God, I am experiencing a greater understanding of the good, all-sufficient, and unchangeable nature of my Lord.
And even better?
My friendship with my God is deepening as I entrust Him with every care.
Isn’t that awesome?
Today, my hope study led me to these words of David:
But I am like an olive tree
flourishing in the house of God;
I trust in God’s unfailing love
for ever and ever.
For what you have done I will always praise you
in the presence of your faithful people.
And I will hope in your name,
for your name is good.
New International Version, Psalm 52: 8-9
There are three definitive life choices found in these two stanzas.
I will trust.
I will praise.
I will hope.
For me, this means I rely upon and rest in the trusted relationship I have with my God.
Second, I have a heart filled to overflowing with gratitude. I remain thankful for what my Lord does and will continue to do in every aspect of my life.
Third, I abide in the hope I have in my God. I look forward to all that is ahead of me – even if I don’t envision that future yet – as I enjoy our relationship now and in turn wait for the fellowship that is promised in the eternal kingdom of God.
After 50 days of choosing to trust and hope in my God instead of the temporary emotional comfort of a brownie, a cinnamon roll, a slice of pumpkin pie, or even a handful of chocolate chips, I say with confidence:
My God is my Hope.
Of course that doesn’t mean that life won’t throw me a challenge, or that my patience won’t be tested, or that my heart won’t be wounded, or that a failure won’t occur, or that a wave of discouragement won’t force me to the ground.
No life is problem-free.
But, what is different this year is that I’m choosing to rely upon my God for it all – without sugar.
The blessing is that after 50 days, I’m appreciating the steady and sure Presence of my God in a deeply, gratifying way.
As I continue to abide in the waiting hope I have with my God, my confidence and trust grows in Him. I believe I can do this no-sugar-deal for another 315 days with my God’s help. It’s one food choice at a time of course. However, I’m training my mind to choose my God first – not chocolate – and that requires a patient hope.
I’m all in and I’m ready for more!
I know a few of you are doing the no-sugar-thing too. How is the sugar-free journey going for you in 2017?