I always find myself doing some reflection, the night before my weekly class/clinic/encounter with the scale… Have I been doing the program? Have I been doing it correctly? Have I been doing better than last week? Am I cheating? Could I have done better? It’s been tougher this time through the fasting. The tendency is to use past experience to “manage” things this time. So, if I know what foods will upset the balance and make me sick (heavy fat content for example, that will make me really sick), then if I stick to sneaking in foods that won’t make me sick, and I journal all the calories, then I’m good, right?
Well, technically, that’s right. But honestly, it doesn’t work that way. Part of the process is taking a break from all the complexity of eating, especially for someone like me who has issues about food, and to use that time to unlearn bad habits. The goal – to (hopefully) learn some new and better ones. But, if I’m trying to add in this, and sneak in that (those DARN Girl Scout cookies, for example…), then I never really take a break from the food, and thus the slate doesn’t get cleared, and space isn’t made for better habits… See the picture?
By doing this fast for 12 weeks, we get tabula rasa – a blank slate to write a new life upon. But if I hold on to the old habits, there’s no space for the new ones.
And, as always in this experience, it’s not too far to leap from the weight loss to other aspects of life. As a follower of Christ, have I ever totally submitted to Him so as to allow Him to write new things on me? Have I laid all the old things down, or am I carrying them around like chains and weights that keep me from a clean slate? Compared to the weight loss program, this is the most important consideration. So, as I try to stay away from those things that will slow my progress in the fasting, let my eyes be opened to the other things, that slow my progress in running what Paul called “the race set before us.”