Friday, December 16, 2011


How much is enough?

Good question.  I was chatting with someone in a store tonight and we were mentioning how it's really difficult to fit our petite frames when there's a belly involved.  We commiserated about that, and were quick to be grateful for certain lines of clothing that cater to our specific body type needs.  It made me think about wanting to lose weight - a topic that occasionally rears its ugly head.  

One of the first things a person learns when dieting living a new lifestyle is how much is enough.  So accustomed to ignoring the body's signals that it's full - the person keeps on eating and over-fills the stomach.  I can't count the number of times I've gone to bed in agony because I didn't know when to say when - and ended up overeating to the point of pain.  Then promising myself I'll never do it again.  But I do.  I forget the pain and focus on the short-term pleasure of making the other kind of hurting go away: the emotional kind.  It's true that people like me (there are so many of us out there!) really are "FEEDING their feelings."  This is to avoid FEELING them.  

People can be like that about anything.  Some are like that about housekeeping.  Others about fitness.  Still others about social activity - never able to get enough interaction. Some people can't seem to stop trying to rescue other people. I have to constantly guard against that one and if I can't with this or that individual, if I am constantly compelled to try to fix someone ... I need to walk away. 

People can be irresistibly drawn to shopping - to television - to sports - to motor vehicles of any description - to ... anything you can name.  These things provide an escape - a pleasurable escape - to the person that is trapped inside of them.  But even though they're pleasurable prisons, they are still prisons.  Any doubt about that ....?  just try to get out of one.  See how difficult it is.  

In relationship with God, escape from the endless trap of pleasurable diversions ... is possible.  With His help on a moment-by-moment basis, it is possible to get out of those prisons, those chains, those wrappings.  And the route isn't by attacking the wrappings - it's by tackling what's inside.  

Remember what I said about feeling our feelings instead of feeding them?  That's the ticket.  Emotional healing is the way to heal - focusing on relationships with God, the self, and THEN with others will allow all those other escape mechanisms to just drop off like unwanted baggage.  

And then someday, we'll be able to be in a situation and just know that this is "it" - that this is as far as we will go - and have the grace and courage to say, "ENOUGH!"

Real healing happens from the inside out.  If it doesn't, it will only be temporary.  And only God can heal the heart.

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