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December 30th, 2010
08:00 AM ET

My Take: When the fat girl got mad at God

Editor's Note: Lysa TerKeurst is president of Proverbs 31 Ministries and author of Made to Crave: Satisfying Your Deepest Desire With God, Not Food. Lysa blogs daily at www.lysaterkeurst.com. 

By Lysa TerKeurst, Special to CNN

Three years ago I was stuck in a rut of wishful thinking and excuses with my weight loss. At the beginning of each day I would say I wanted things to be different. I would vow in my heart to make things different. I would even make a plan to stop the snacks, increase the veggies, and say no to the desserts.

But then life would happen. And the excuses were so very plentiful. So, my resolve would melt away like butter on a hot yeast roll.

Of course the next morning I would always get up and weigh myself hoping that somehow magic would have happened over night. Despite my indulgences from the day before, maybe just maybe the numbers would have gone down.

But the scale was not impressed with my wishful thinking. So you know who I’d get mad at?

God.

I’d beg God to help me one minute while scarfing down an order of fries the next. And then I’d be doubly mad He didn’t steer my car away from the drive-thru.

I deemed myself a victim of tragic genetics, overactive taste buds and a stomach that demanded large portions.  What I failed to realize for years is there was a much more significant issue going on with me.

More important than the ever increasing size of my jeans was the deception going on inside my heart. My weight was outside indication of an internal situation. There was a crucial spiritual situation that needed to be addressed.

I was relying on food to be my comfort, my ever present help, my guide, the thing that got me through the valleys and the first thing I wanted to celebrate with in the good times. Honestly, I might as well have taken Psalm 23 and replaced the Lord’s name with various food choices.

My proper little Christian self would have never expressed that out loud. But my body wouldn’t keep secrets. I had an issue. And the ever increasing size of my body demanded the REAL issue be addressed.

I don’t write to point out anyone else’s issue. There are certainly medical situations that can cause weight gain. But my issue was truly a spiritual one. And no diet would have ever been permanently successful until I got to the real root of my problem.

The root of my issue was craving food more than God. I desired and depended on the instant high of physical gratification because I hadn’t learned how to let God satisfy my deepest needs.

God wasn’t causing my weight issues as some sort of cruel consequence for my poor choices.
God was actually the very thing I needed to help overcome my issues.

Dr. Floyd Chilton who teaches at Wake Forest University of medicine wrote an article that said, "Your willpower is in constant battle with your genes and your calorie-excessive environment. Often your best efforts are no match for your genes and environment which is why so many diets fail so miserably... Will power alone is not enough to bring about this change; start by realizing that can not do this alone. If you are a person of faith, use that connection to help you change."

So, I set out to understand what the Bible says about how to consume food without food consuming me. I started in Genesis and read through the Bible with an appetite for truth rather than chocolate, chips and cheeseburgers. This was a spiritual journey that yielded great physical benefits. I lost 25 pounds in 4 months but more importantly, I have kept it off for nearly two years. That’s a first for me!

Now, I sense my weight issue was actually a gift in disguise. I never thought I’d say that. And yes, three years ago I would have rolled my eyes at someone saying that too.

But I don’t say it as a Pollyanna lollipop girl with too much air between her ears and no cellulite on her hiney.
I know this is a tough issue. I’ve walked through the tears and the feelings of failure. Remember, I was the fat girl mad at God about this whole deal. So, hear me out.

Learning to turn to God to fill my soul instead of food to overstuff my emptiness, has changed more than just my jeans size. It has changed my outlook on life. I did lose the extra weight I needed to shed and kept it off. But the real reward was what I gained with Jesus in the process. He became the best part of my journey. And I wouldn’t have missed this new found closeness I now have with Him for anything in world.

“For the Kingdom of God is not a matter of eating and drinking but of righteousness, peace and joy in the Holy Spirit, because anyone who serves Christ in this way is pleasing to God and approved by men. Let us therefore make every effort to do what leads to peace and to mutual edification. Do not destroy the work of God for the sake of food,” Romans 14:17-20.

The opinions expressed in this commentary are solely those of Lysa TerKeurst.

- CNN Belief Blog

Filed under: Bible • Christianity • Food • God • Opinion

soundoff (1,314 Responses)
  1. Nurse Chapel

    FANTASTIC article. You've hit the nail on the head. Oh, how sad to read some of the comments of some of these 'open-minded thinkers' (sarcasm intended)...please don't read & comment on the religion blog if you're only doing so to bash. It only displays the truth about how closed-minded you really are. Lysa, you are exactly right, and I can't wait to read Made to Crave! Thank you, and awesome blessings to you too!

    January 4, 2011 at 1:04 pm |
    • NL

      Hey, if you don't like dissenting opinion then read articles posted in Christian discussion boards. They ban non-believers there as a matter of policy, it seems. I should know, I've been banned from a few. 😉

      January 4, 2011 at 1:19 pm |
  2. Tried and True

    ..."For we will all stand before God's judgment seat. It is written: 'As surely as I live, says the Lord, EVERY knee will bow before me; EVERY tongue will confess to God'" Romans 14:10-14

    For those of you who do not currently believe in or know the One True God, there will come a day, The Day, when your very own tongue will confess and your very own knee will bow to Him. The word "every" means EVERY and that includes you. I pray that each of you, from this moment on, will somehow be touched by His great love for you and come to know Him as your Lord and Savior. I also pray that all our hearts (Christians and non-Christians), will be prepared and ready for The Day.

    His return is near... don't miss it for the world!

    January 4, 2011 at 12:37 pm |
    • NL

      And I can hope that history does not judge people too harshly for still choosing to believe in superst.ition while living in the age of reason.

      A word of advice; you may actually do better by not treating non-believers as children who can be frightened by monsters hiding in the dark, or is that what you really want in a god, some monster that will punish your enemies?

      January 4, 2011 at 1:14 pm |
  3. Watch what you say

    Thank you Lysa for sharing your story about what God has done through you. No one can take that away. All glory to God.

    As for those who speak such horrible words, I think I should warn you to watch what you say. Matthew 12:36 says (Jesus speaking) "But I tell you that everyone will have to give account on the day of judgment for every empty word they have spoken." Also, Mark 3:29 says (Jesus speaking again) "but whoever blasphemes against the Holy Spirit will never be forgiven; they are guilty of an eternal sin.” As Jesus said on the cross, "Father forgive them. They don't know what they are doing." He was talking about you and all of us who don't understand the severity of our words and actions. I pray those who spoke such cruel things will feel conviction for your words and apologize publicly.

    January 4, 2011 at 12:20 pm |
    • Crystal

      I live in Charlotte, near where Lysa lives and promotes her books and ministry. Much of what she writes is banal and designed for the woman who is a follower. It isn't for the woman who can actually read and understand the Bible. She is a shameless promoter and making money is the real burden placed upon her heart.

      Sometimes the truth hurts. I find that when good folks point out the money-grubbing practices of so-called Christians, it is only a matter of minutes before hearing, "Well, Satan is at work again."

      Women, think before enriching this already very wealthy woman.

      January 4, 2011 at 6:00 pm |
  4. Kimberly M

    GOD BLESS YOU LYSA. Thanks for the great article! I will buy the book. TO THE NON-BELIEVERS/ATHEISTS: GOD LOVES US ALL, EVEN THOSE WHO HATE HIM. You will surely regret your non-belief when you draw that last breath I promise you. Remember I said this to you. ...Oh and yes, I will continue to pray for you. 🙂

    January 4, 2011 at 12:19 pm |
    • NL

      Again (and again, and again...) you can't hate what you don't think is real. Saying I hate God is like saying I actually hate Darth Vader.

      Anyone who obviously is looking forward to others experiencing pain, as you seem to, might have their own hate issues that they might want help with. You certainly sound angry. Perhaps God isn't satisfying all of your needs?

      January 5, 2011 at 1:45 am |
  5. Pam

    AMEN sister! Thank you Lysa. God bless you for being so open and honest!

    January 4, 2011 at 12:19 pm |
  6. Thank you.

    Lysa, I heard you on KLove this morning . I was on my way to work and I was in the middle of praying, and asking God to help me make better, healthier decisions today. I truly feel as if God spoke directly to me through you. I have long struggled with weight and have seemed to be stuck in the pattern of asking for help, but not doing anything to help myself. Thank you for the encouragement you display in the blog. I look forward to reading your book. I ordered it today!

    January 4, 2011 at 11:54 am |
  7. Tammy Grisham

    Thank you Lysa for you dedication to the Lord!
    To those who think that we should leave God at home, do you live in America? Our country is based on In God we trust!
    But God can deffend himself. I will say that I had been a drug addict mostly meth and cocain for at least 7 years. I almost died! I called my mom and she picked me up, we went back to her home in the country, I went up stairs and I prayed! I did not know God except for going to church when I was a child. I asked him to help me, I cried out to him. I had not spoke to him in years. He met me right where I was! I cried out to him for help, to heal me, deliver me from the drug abuse! And he did! I have been clean for 13 years now! You can ask anyone who knows something about withdrawing from drugs, I should not have lived through that! God put me to sleep for a few days, during that time he was healing me. I woke up a free woman!
    God is the same yesterday, today and forever Amen!
    I have seen him at work first hand! Thank you Lord!

    January 4, 2011 at 11:46 am |
  8. jbrown

    Wow, that was so encouraging! Great perspective, and so well communicated. Great work, Lysa.

    January 4, 2011 at 11:30 am |
  9. I'm A Believer

    So, I heard Lysa talking this morning on my local KLOVE radio station, so I was intrigued to visit this blog. Wow, it is amazing how God can turn around what Satan is trying to use against one person and use it for something good. Just look at this, it went from food to proving that God exists in just a few comments, and now, look, you guys are being a witness to Guapo and others who claim they don't believe in God. And to all the people on here who don't believe in God, I want you to know that people who truly have a relationship with God does love you. So many people can claim to be Christians or call themselves Christians, but it's when you experience that relationship with him (and he does exist if you give him a chance) that you truly understand what Dallas5superrings, Tyler Rowan, Mark, and Steve the real one are all trying to say here in these comments (please read them if you've skipped over them). I've read through all of these comments and it's really quite disturbing to hear these non-believers (who've shown no proof of what they're saying they believe in) to bash God (and demand proof of his existance). Also, many of you are acting like children, okay, if you don't believe in God, then that's your choice. No one should condemn you or hurt you. God gives us free will, he gives us a choice. If you tell me I'm wrong for choosing God, then okay, I'm not going to argue with you, you know why? Because I have a relationship with God, I know he exists. If you who don't believe and can feel the energy from the earth or something from the trees make you feel all warm and cozy inside and that's your God, then you have that right to believe that. But don't bash something you've never encountered before. I pray that Lysa's blog and the responses have changed someone. My prayer is that someone here will question (not get angry or mad), but will sincerely want to know God and maybe be changed forever. God bless all of you, even those of you who don't believe.

    January 4, 2011 at 11:23 am |
    • Nurse Chapel

      Amen, loved your post!

      January 4, 2011 at 1:07 pm |
    • NL

      Just as I've come to understand that shadows and creaks in my old house late at night are not actually signs of monsters the wonders of our universe don't appear to be signs of God to me either. When a child cries out at night that something has frightened them under their bed do we actually expect to find monsters, or just an active imagination? If somebody beats the odds and survives a devastating car crash you would accept an explanation of angels, but would you accept an explanation of superheroes? Think about it!

      January 5, 2011 at 1:59 am |
    • I'm A Believer

      Well, this is my last post, I think a person can only say the same thing so many times...lol. Hey, if you don't believe in God, that's cool, that's your decision. It's a blog and a place where we state our opinions. There was a time in my life I questioned if there was a God. However, it's a personal decision you make, and convictions that give you the opportunity to believe in something greater. I took that chance and believe that, through my belief I've experienced who God is, if you haven't, then I'm not going to tell you what it's like because I can't. God is not science, he's not a formula, or something you can put together. In my opinion I think it's unfortunate that you don't believe in God, because you're good at keeping a debate going and that works well on either side of the fence 🙂 But I guess you could say the same about me. To me, God is good, and our ever present help in time of need. I will never be able to explain this the way you want or expect, because you want tangible evidence, but this is the way that I know how. Take care NL. It's been nice talking to you. I wish all the best things for you! 🙂

      January 5, 2011 at 4:02 pm |
    • NL

      I'm A Believer-
      I hope the best for you too, man! Otherwise I wouldn't bother talking to you, right? Take care!

      January 5, 2011 at 7:40 pm |
  10. CKP

    Thanks for sharing Lysa. God is good. People are silly. Go believers. Sorry for non-believers, but can't we all get along? Whether you believe or not, we can still have compasion for our fellow humans and respect their freedom of speech.

    January 4, 2011 at 10:49 am |
    • NL

      CKP-
      "Thanks for sharing Lysa. God is good. People are silly. Go believers. Sorry for non-believers, but can't we all get along? Whether you believe or not, we can still have compasion for our fellow humans and respect their freedom of speech."

      You are free to express your opinion that God is real and good, but it is only an opinion, without fact to support it. I have the same freedom of speech as you do, and that was my opinion, but the difference is that I have facts and evidence to support my opinion, and you do not.

      Sorry, but if 'getting along' means respecting your beliefs enough never to criticize them, as many believers seem to expect, I for one cannot comply. How can we have freedom of speech if some topics and beliefs are considered too taboo to ever question?

      January 4, 2011 at 12:38 pm |
  11. KM

    I believe that our God has brought all these atheists to this blog obviously because they are missing something in their lives. And I pray that they all will learn before its too late, that what they are missing is JESUS !

    January 4, 2011 at 10:35 am |
    • I'm A Believer

      Amen! I feel the same way! I commented on that too 🙂 I believe God has a purpose for everything he allows to happen.

      January 4, 2011 at 12:26 pm |
    • NL

      KM-
      Have you ever considered that so many of us atheists comment on this site in the hopes of reasoning with believers like you?

      Then again, as this site has become known for the number of atheists who post here, perhaps there is something that draws all you believers here? Some deep-rooted need to explore your own doubts, and hear a different viewpoint, maybe? A safe environment in which to have your questions answered? Maybe it is you who are the 'seekers' here and what you are missing in life is rational thinking?

      January 4, 2011 at 12:57 pm |
    • I'm A Believer

      This is a belief blog, not an Athiest, Christian, Muslim, or any other sole belief or organization blog. It's fine to read whatever you want. I would be concerned if athiests commented on my beliefs as trying to disprove them or make fun of what I believe in when the article didn't refer in any way of asking athiests to prove what they do and don't believe in. It's not an athiests' blog or page. Probably what draws believers here is because it's called a belief blog...? Maybe? Also, I'm a believer and don't have doubts about God or my salvation, I didn't see where KM stated any doubts either. A lot of believers have stated how they feel on here and it's kind of awkward actually to watch non-believers jump right in and start defending or talking about what they believe is not real. Okay, so, believe that, but for a person who has experienced the love of God and the Holy Spirit, I don't think you can do much changing or opening the eyes of a believer. Just like when you try a new food and you prefer that over the food you've had before. Experience and watching God do things in your life is what causes you to believe.

      January 4, 2011 at 2:28 pm |
    • NL

      I'm A Believer-
      "I don't think you can do much changing or opening the eyes of a believer."
      Very true for most believers, but there is hope for those who have not fully committed to a faith we all hope.

      January 4, 2011 at 5:40 pm |
    • I'm A Believer

      Ok, NL,
      "I don't think you can do much changing or opening the eyes of a believer." (Right, because the believer actually has something to believe in, therefore making him/her a believer. Unless there is something better put in front of the person, then maybe their belief changes or not depending on their level of pride or stubborness).

      So, you say:
      'Very true for most believers, but there is hope for those who have not fully committed to a faith we all hope.' What kind of hope would you be referring to?

      January 4, 2011 at 6:49 pm |
    • NL

      I'm A Believer-
      "Unless there is something better put in front of the person"
      There is something better. It's called reality. What we know for sure, and not just supersti.tion that you cannot argue is equal to any other superst.ition. Isn't that better?

      "What kind of hope would you be referring to?"
      The hope that we as a species will abandon fantasy for what is real, and true. Sorry, but that is what I believe. Your beliefs are hurting us, and keeping us back. It's time for them to go.

      January 4, 2011 at 7:49 pm |
    • I'm A Believer

      NL,

      "There is something better. It's called reality. What we know for sure, and not just supersti.tion that you cannot argue is equal to any other superst.ition. Isn't that better? The hope that we as a species will abandon fantasy for what is real, and true. Sorry, but that is what I believe. Your beliefs are hurting us, and keeping us back. It's time for them to go."

      Reality is tangible, that's all around us. I went to school, I have a job, I drive a car, I sing, I dance, I cook, I enjoy photography, I watch tv, I have real life friends who come to my house, and play real games on my xbox 360 🙂 and do all the fun, reality stuff you know...but I also believe that there is a higher power, I believe in the Trinity, and that the son (Jesus) died for the sins of man so that when we die we don't go to the dust (spiritually speaking), there are two places, heaven and hell where our souls will spend eternity. But here's where I get confused, I don't ask non-believers to believe that, you don't have to, that's your choice, and that's cool (personally I wish you believed how I believed, but you also feel the same way towards me) So, my questions, how do I hurt you or hold you back? I am in this reality too and I believe that the world is turning and that I'm aging. So, what else should I believe other than reality, cause obviously I believe in that. Although I choose not to be involved in the evil of crimes and murders and things like that (but of course it's reality and I'm not implying that non-believers or atheists are involved in that), and although I live and breath here, I can also believe there's something greater. But I have no clue how that affects you if you don't believe in it. I have plenty of friends that don't have a belief, and there's so many people that I disagree with, but I still befriend them, I mean we're not bff's or anything, but I respect them just as they respect me and we go on with our "real" lives. See, I live in reality just like you, I just have other beliefs that are different from your beliefs 🙂

      January 5, 2011 at 9:33 am |
    • NL

      I'm A Believer-
      When you go gaming do you know that you are experiencing reality, or only believe you are? If you only believe you are then you might expect to wake from dreaming at any given time, throughout your day but you know the difference, right? All I'm saying is that reality is something everyone knows is real, unless you're crazy of course, whereas God is only something that you can believe is real. See the difference?

      Gott go, TTFN!

      January 5, 2011 at 7:49 pm |
    • I'm A Believer

      LOL NL...sorry, I'm not the gamer, had to laugh at that for a second, because it is a big deal in my house, except my husband is the gamer, and believe me, sometimes I think that's a true reality for him...lol, but I do play some games with him 🙂 But anyways, God is a reality for me. He may not be a person like you and me that you can touch, because that would get rid of the importance of the whole salvation thing, then we wouldn't have to believe, he'd just be there, but he's here with me. Just like the wind, you can't see it, but you can feel it 🙂 Ok, like I said in my earlier post, I'm through posting the same thing, but didn't not want to respond to your post. Take care.

      January 6, 2011 at 9:28 am |
    • NL

      I'm A Believer-
      "Just like the wind, you can't see it, but you can feel it"

      Are you sure you want to keep using wind as an analogy for God? You may not be able to see it directly, but you do know it's there by all the pollution and garbage that it carries with it, and all the damage that it leaves in it's wake. Besides, meteorology is a well established science capable of measuring, analyzing, and predicting wind patterns allowing us to prove that wind really exists, how it works, where it came from, and what it has in store for us. See where I'm going with this? Just some friendly advice.

      Take care.

      January 7, 2011 at 10:06 am |
  12. Cayankee

    To DOCTORO:
    What are we doing to help world hunger? And we are blaming God for the problem. Is it not the same issue Lysa had? JUST A THOUGHT FROM MY ECCLESATICAL PEZ DESPENCER!

    January 4, 2011 at 10:24 am |
    • NL

      Why help solve world hunger when you can buy a book for your enjoyment?

      January 4, 2011 at 2:22 pm |
  13. Kayla Sloan

    WOW LYSA!! This is so exciting! I heard you on KLove this morning, and just had to come see for myself!! This is really awesome! It breaks my heart to hear all of these hurtful things from people, but what is being solved with childish name-calling and accusations? Little do they know that the greater good is being accomplished!! What satan meant for evil, God is using for good! “There’s no such thing as bad publicity” I know your book sales are SKY ROCKETING!!
    It really is amazing how people “don’t want their time wasted with such Christian propaganda” but yet they still take the time to read it and the comments, AND have input.. Only proves how God can work in the lives of people who aren’t willing.
    I didn’t get to read all posts, I DID however, read several interesting ones that I’d like to speak to. First of all, I agree that there are no such things as “super-beings”, there is only ONE ULTIMATE “being” and that’s God himself! I also had to chuckle at the man who believed the only difference between animals and people is that animals don’t believe in God.. lol, So he saying that atheists(like himself) are animals?? Too funny! ALSO… to the gentleman who so brilliantly pointed out his knowledge of Exodus and Leviticus, trying to put down the bible: He wanted everyone to know how it downgraded women and supported slavery, but what he obviously doesn’t know (or failed to mention) is that all of this was before the death of Jesus, who paid the ultimate price so we wouldn’t HAVE to follow these laws! In these same chapters it also says that you’re not allowed to have a beard! Or wear clothes that aren’t 100% of one material! Or mark on your bodies! Now how many of you have tattoos??? We’ll stop there..
    Again, due to lack of time and space, I’d just like to reference a couple songs that I hope you’ll read the lyrics to: “What If” by Nichole Nordeman, and “A Few Questions” by Clay Walker. KUDOS LYSA and supporters, my prayers are as yours!

    January 4, 2011 at 10:22 am |
    • I'm A Believer

      Kayla, that's where I heard it too. Also, read some of the comments from Dallas5superrings, Tyler Rowan, and Steve the real one. Tyler Rowan almost made me cry with how he describes God. I'm loving how the believers are standing up for God!! Also, I gave my two cents near the end of the blogs. God bless.

      January 4, 2011 at 11:48 am |
    • Doc Vestibule

      @Kayla
      Admitedly, I pulled the quotations from teh Old Testament, as Exodus and especially Leviticus are full of nonsense and outright evil.
      For the sake of argument, we'll postulate that everything in the OT can be disregarded because Book II supercedes the old, Jewish law.
      If we take a look at the New Testament, the statements are not as direct as the old, but approval of slavery is still there.
      For example, in the Epistle of Paul, he states "Tell slaves to be submissive to their masters and to give satisfaction in every respect; they are not to talk back, not to pilfer, but to show complete and perfect fidelity, so that in everything they may be an ornament to the doctrine of God our Savior."

      Back in the abolitionist days, Jefferson Davis, the president of the Confederate States of America used the bible to argue in favour of insti-tutionalized slavery. "Slavery was established by decree of Almighty God...it is sanctioned in the Bible, in both Testaments, from Genesis to Revelation...it has existed in all ages, has been found among the people of the highest civilization, and in nations of the highest proficiency in the arts."

      As for the status of women, a scan of Ephesians 5:22 in the NT gives us the following: "Wives, submit to your husbands as to the Lord. For the husband is the head of the wife...wives should submit to their husbands in everything."
      Timothy 2:11-15:
      "A woman should learn in quietness and full submission. I do not permit a woman to teach or to have authority over a man; she must be silent..."

      So, even in the New Testament, slavery is A-OK and women are inferior.

      January 4, 2011 at 1:27 pm |
    • I'm A Believer

      Oh Doc, I wasn't going to say anything else....until I read what you wrote. Please, come on, do you honestly read the bible? Did you read that whole chapter of Ephesians except the one verse you quoted here? Do you know who that was preaching to the Ephesians? Actually, he used to be very much like the non-believers on this blog here. He used to persecute believers, stone them, condemn them, and then he became a believer. He's one of the greatest prophets and teachers of Christ. Since you took the time to quote what Paul said, I'll explain what it means. I'm very passionate about this verse in the bible. I gave it to my sister and her husband when they got married and explained it to her, as I try to use this according to my marriage. It is so helpful (no it doesn't always work because I'm human and not perfect and I argue with my husband just like the next woman does..lol, but I know in my heart how my husband and I must treat eachother). When Paul (who is not God) says, "Wives, submit to your husbands as to the Lord. For the husband is the head of the wife...For the husband is the head of the wife as Christ is the head of the church (oops you forgot that part), his body, of which he is the Savior" . You know why it's nice (not that we HAVE to obey this), but it's nice because husbands and wives really get along well this way. You see, when a wife listens to her husband and tries to understand her husband and works along with him instead of against him, he respects her and loves her the same (not saying that for all marriages, but when both are in the same agreement it works out pretty well). Paul gave this example to help us understand how Jesus did this. The bible calls for the husband to lead the household, to lead the wife, as Christ led many and gave himself for the church (the believers), Christ led the church, the husband leads the wife, Christ loved the church, the husband loves the wife, in return because Christ loved the church and gave himself for the church, so the wife gives herself to her husband. The bible really does help us with so many situations, if we read it 🙂

      January 4, 2011 at 3:02 pm |
    • I'm A Believer

      .....just wanted to add, in my analogy, the wife represents the church, the husband represents Christ. So, as the church submits and respects Christ, the wife does the same to her husband 🙂

      January 4, 2011 at 3:17 pm |
    • Doc Vestibule

      @I'm a Believer
      Correct me if I'm wrong, but your assertion seems to be that the exlicit statement "wives submit to your husbands" is not a biblical command for women to be subservient to their spouses? It seems to me that the passage in question (which you fleshed out a bit more) lays down the chain of command, which goes Jesus – husband – wife. Christ runs the church, the male runs the household and the woman obeys.

      How about the quote from Timothy that effectively commands women to be quiet and do as they're told?

      What of the reference to slavery I posted?

      January 4, 2011 at 3:17 pm |
    • I'm A Believer

      Yes, you are correct Doc, I wish I had all the time in the world to do this, but I don't (I've been on and offline all day), so I didn't go into the other verse, I mean you saw how long just going over that one verse lasted. However, when it comes to the bible, which I actually enjoy reading a lot, but haven't finished yet, I'll never not defend something I believe to be true...so....here we go 🙂 Yes, I believe it's Christ – Husband – Wife. Also, I don't believe it's talking about the wife having to be a servant to her husband. I know we live in a more modern world now, and we have pen and paper and we don't write on stone anymore, so I don't also believe you should take things out of context either, as it seems you may be implying that wives should obey as in a child obeys his/her parent. Yes, the wife, I believe should make decisions with her husband, but as far as obeying, I believe she should follow his lead, like he should set the example for her. I love more than anything when my husband prays for our family or asks me to read the bible with him. I actually enjoy preparing dinner for my husband and making sure he has everything he needs, you know. So, I think that's how we were made, you know, men and women are totally different. Men are natural born leaders ( I mean really, they are), and women are leaders too (but not like men), women enjoy taking care of things (like their husbands, babies, homes, etc). So...anyways, those are my thoughts on that.

      As far as Timothy 2:11-15, I believe you meant 1 Timothy 2:11-15? You do know this is not God speaking right? This is when Paul (a man appointed by God) was speaking to Timothy, he wrote him a letter explaining how he believed they should act when they assemble to worship God. As I said before, Paul was a great prophet, apostle, teacher of Christ, but he wasn't God. He gave us great instruction, like the one on marriage I was telling you about, but this is not a command from God, just so we're clear on that. So, with this verse you quoted, I think it would be good for you to read 1 Timothy 1 – 2, the whole chapters. Let me know if you still have questions, I'll be more than happy to explain...or try...:-) Paul really was an amazing and obedient man of God. Hey, even if you don't believe Doc, the bible has great stories (but it's much more exciting if you actually believe these things happened) 🙂

      Can you explain where you got the text of slavery from in the bible (exact verses if you don't mind)...it's a little broad to cover that much in one paragraph, lol. Thanks.

      January 4, 2011 at 4:17 pm |
    • I'm A Believer

      Hey Doc, in an earlier post from you, you said "God wants you to buy and sell people, including your own daughters (or throw them to a mod to be ra-ped like Lot did) and to treat women like unclean beasts". What did you mean by that? Just curious.

      January 4, 2011 at 4:50 pm |
  14. Pinkmania

    That was great Lysa - good for you! I will follow in your foot steps and try the same! Thanks for your blog and for P31 that I love love love!!!! I appreciate your truth and honesty!

    January 4, 2011 at 10:17 am |
  15. creet

    I've read the posted the comments concerning Lysa's article. To the person who posted "God helps them that helps themselves" is NOT anything God said, it is a quote from Ben Franklin. If you would spend time reading the Bible you would find the theme running through it that God is in the business of helping those that CAN'T help themselves. He wants us to rely on him.

    The Bible states that "I can do ALL things through Christ who strengthens me." That even means losing weight. Will power is just NOT enough.

    As for the person who posted that their prayer for winning the lottery weren't answered because he didn't ever win it, that is your answer. If you are solely relying on winning the lottery to get through life then you will not get anywhere and are being suckered in to donating money to your state. God does not always answer prayers with a positive answer. He is like a parent who knows what is best for you and sometimes the answer is a resounding NO! Sometimes he says wait, the time for this is not now. We are a very impatient people and want what we want now, like a spoiled brat kid, which none of us can stand to be around.

    As to those who say there is no God and he is a fairy tale, I say to you that I have had enough events happen in my life that were too large to be explained as just a coincidence. You unbelievers are confounded by what the Christians are saying because you are not a believer of God or in his son Jesus Christ. Jesus even states that his words would confound the unbeliever because the do not have the Holy Spirit residing in them to give the words of Christ clear. And there are things that God placed in this world that we would not fully understand until we are in His presence in heaven and other things that our finite minds just cannot wrap around and never will.

    Debate is good, but some of the strains had nothing to do with the topic at hand, and obviously came from folks who just like to debate and argue, just for the sake of arguing. Apologetics is an interesting arena, but be ready to defend God at any opportunity.

    January 4, 2011 at 10:12 am |
    • NL

      Glad you are not afraid of a little debate like some others seem to be, but as to the complaint that some of us just like to argue off-topic, 'God and his existence' is always the topic whenever somebody claims that God actually did something in their lives, so you can expect we atheists to chime in pretty regularly here because of that.

      January 4, 2011 at 1:32 pm |
  16. Chris (tain )

    Lysa, I truely enjoyed the article and I am now looking forward to reading the book. This could not have gotten my attention at any better time. You see, my dad, a preacher, passed away one year ago today. Over the past year I have unwittingly turned to food for comfort. As I was driving to work this morning, I was praying for strength to get through the day, and heard you speaking on K-love. My dad was a wonderful teacher, and had always told me study the bible to find the answers I need in life and to grow stronger in my faith. Coincidence? I dont think so. We have an AWESOME GOD who takes care of us if we allow Him to be a part of our life. God is love plain and simple. I now am lookin forward to a new year of reading my bible, but God has givin me something else to focus my attention and prayers on, all of these souls that have been so negatively commenting on the article. We as christians should be slow to criticize and quick to pray. God Bless You

    January 4, 2011 at 10:04 am |
  17. ImaBeliever

    It saddens me to see how quick people are to attack ANYONE who speaks about their faith. Lysa presented her experience...and yet she is attacked from every angle. Why is it that others are allowed to express their freedom of speech, however when a person of faith does, they are ridiculed and called names. Seems to me that there are a lot of "God-a-phobics" out there.

    January 4, 2011 at 9:58 am |
    • NL

      Hey, we're ridiculed and called names too. Even threatened with hell and accused of being evil just because we don't agree with you. Makes one wonder how free someone would be to voice such opinions in your churches, doesn't it?

      I wonder, if someone were to sell a weight management system based on following one's horoscope, or casting spells, or wearing lucky charms, or taking to heart the wisdom of the Qu'ran, and folks in your church started to show some interest, would you remain quiet out of respect for someone else's beliefs?

      January 4, 2011 at 1:45 pm |
    • I'm A Believer

      @NL
      Do you believe in hell?

      January 4, 2011 at 3:19 pm |
    • NL

      No, why should I?

      January 4, 2011 at 11:39 pm |
    • I'm A Believer

      NL, I was really just curious. Thanks 🙂

      January 5, 2011 at 10:38 am |
  18. corey and me

    thankyou Lysa! It's terrific to hear that you found something to help you make a positive change in your life, whether it's God or not. However, healthy lifestyles are importants as is spiritual growth. I'm glad you found happiness both in Yourself adn is God!

    January 4, 2011 at 9:56 am |
  19. Annajazz

    Thanks for the encouraging and thoughtful article! It's great to be reminded that even when I mess up, God remains constant.

    "My flesh and my heart may fail, but God is the strength of my heart and my portion forever." Psalm 73:26.

    Talk about the right kind of portion control! 🙂

    January 4, 2011 at 9:53 am |
    • Chris (tain )

      That is going to be my scripture focus for this year ! AWESOME GOD 🙂

      January 4, 2011 at 10:08 am |
  20. gonefishin

    I'm so glad to live such a sheltered life. I knew all along that those without our Lord, Jesus Christ, were hurting ,but I never knew they had so much anger inside. I guess it will only anger them more to know that we are praying for them but what better thing can we do than to pray for their souls and hope they find what we have already found in our Savior.

    January 4, 2011 at 9:39 am |
    • NL

      Thank you! It's reading comments like your's that brighten my morning by reaffirming that I made the correct choice in becoming an atheist. I owe much of my joy and contentment to folks just like you.

      Personally, every time I hear a believer gloating over how they think God will torture anyone who speaks freely against him I have to wonder how much anger they themselves have inside, and how they can stand living in this country with it's First Amendment rights.

      January 4, 2011 at 1:58 pm |
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The CNN Belief Blog covers the faith angles of the day's biggest stories, from breaking news to politics to entertainment, fostering a global conversation about the role of religion and belief in readers' lives. It's edited by CNN's Daniel Burke with contributions from Eric Marrapodi and CNN's worldwide news gathering team.