Feeling grateful! I have had a great few days. Just feeling super excited about life! The boys and I house sat/dog sat for my parents this weekend and it was kind of nice to get out of the usual home scenery and stay the night somewhere else a few nights. We played some heads up (download the app if you haven’t already) at my brother’s Friday night, built a snowman in this crazy weather and had a super special, hilarious/fun candlelight dinner Saturday night after the boys got back from watching the High School Wrestling State Championship in CoMO. Then went to church this morning and took our new friend from Pakistan with us. The little man had an amazing practice today, after seeing the big boys wrestle yesterday; I think he was pumped! And I just got off the phone with reading with my niece (we read Junie B. Jones almost nightly) and having a great convo with my cousin! Life is good, God is good! God helps us see the good and all we have to be thankful for even when things are tough!
And let me tell you what, these past few days were TOUGH. My challenge was to not eat sweets for 3 days, to experience resisting temptation. To try to honor Jesus and be thankful for the suffering he went through for us. Sound easy enough? It was not. I swear chocolate lurks everywhere. We don’t keep junk food in our house, yet it finds me. Thursday was rough. I think 3 family members and Johnny all told me how cranky I was. I was experiencing some major withdraws. I was grouchy, moody, irritable. I turned down chocolate donuts, brownies, cookies, you name it. Friday my boss at the spa who I absolutely adore, brought in Reese’s mini cups and dark chocolate almonds and organic sesame sticks. Little did she know that I was doing a 3 day fast from deliciousness. Johnny was cracking up Friday night as I made breakfast for dinner and was scarfing it down. He remembered I hadn’t had any chocolate in 2 days and realized that was why I was diving into the pancakes.
Saturday was tough. I was alone for a few hours while the boys were at the High School State Championship. I came across a single leftover brownie on the counter at my parents. I unwrapped it. I looked at it. I thought about it. I contemplated eating it. Then I threw it away. Victory! I realized it was more satisfying to defeat the temptation than to actually give in to the desire. I even made homemade chocolate chip cookies and didn’t eat one. I served up some ice cream to the boys. I didn’t have any. I was on a roll. I pretty much gave in first thing Sunday morning to a toaster streudel but I did much better than usual Thursday-Saturday.
Temptation is everywhere. I mean everywhere. And not just with sweets. There is temptation to be greedy, to be lazy, to be lustful, to be jealous. Social Media opens up way more temptation than we ever had in the past. It’s easier to be lazy when you are tempted to spend 30 minutes on Facebook when you should be doing _____. It’s easier to be lustful when an inappropriate photo is a click away, when a conversation with a stranger can be started in seconds. It’s easier to be jealous when you can constantly see what new outfit this celeb is wearing or what new car so and so is driving. Temptation is everywhere. God gives us free will. He gives us the choice to choose between right and wrong. To give in to our selfish desires or to turn those desires over to Him instead. And when we turn them over to him, we are rewarded. God wants to give us a life of abundance. Of happiness and prosperity. It’s his plan. And when we are obedient, he is pleased. But it is ultimately up to us in how we react to each situation that comes our way. Do we cower and show no resistance at the first sign of temptation? Or do we resist and flee from that sin?
Giving up sweets was hard for me and it’s actually come to my realization that it is a serious problem. It was taking over my thoughts, my mood, my attitude. Pretty sad. I need to get a handle on it. It is going to take more time, more dedication and more help from God. But there will be reward. I will be healthier and probably more fit. I will feel better. I will know I don’t need it as a crutch to get through the day.
You are not alone in a struggle of temptation. Even Jesus himself was tempted. Yet he prevailed. We can too, with God’s help. Ask him to help you in the area of life that you may struggle with the most. Sweets is probably not my most serious struggle but it’s something I need to hand over to God. And with Him, I will overcome!