Having an eating disorder or related problem = SUFFERING. How do you typically react to this suffering?
What it looks like to minimize your suffering
- “It’s not a big deal. Other people have it way worse than me.”
- You push yourself too much and end up in situations that are really challenging.
- You beat yourself up for getting hung up on this.
What it looks like to be a victim to suffering
- Your thoughts are consumed by it.
- The eating disorder is your identity. “This is just the way I am.”
- It prevents you from doing anything…you’re drowning in it.
Where are you?
I’d imagine most people fall into both of these categories. I know that I do when it comes to my own struggles. Reflect on your day – where are you at right now, today, on this spectrum? Ask God to gently show you.
Minimizing ————————— Somewhere in the middle ————————— Victimized
Denying the problem———-Somewhere in the middle————– Consumed by problem
Things to Ponder
Are you not where you want to be or “should be” on this spectrum? Of course you aren’t, you’re human! I’m not writing this for you to feel guilty, but for you to become more aware. Please give yourself grace in this. Know that God’s grace is with you, which means that his love is there no matter where you are right now.
What emotions come out when you minimize your eating troubles or when you are consumed by them?
Ask God for statements of truth related to how to react to suffering. Write them down and read them when you need them. If you need help, refer to the verses listed at the end of this post.
If you are currently in eating disorder treatment, you’re likely surrounded by constant talk about eating disorders, as well as other people who suffer from them. How can you process through the eating disorder and be in community with fellow sufferers without believing this is your sole identity?
What does the in between look like? What are specific examples of thoughts when you come from the middle ground – aware of your (or your ED’s) unhealthy relationship with food and yet not letting it rule you? How do you feel in those moments?
What does Scripture say?
For those who are minimizing today:
You keep track of all my sorrows. You have collected all my tears in your bottle. You have recorded each one in your book. Psalms 56:8 NLT ~~ Know that God sees and cares about your suffering. Every. Little. Thing.
“Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.” Matthew 11:28-30 ~~ Give this struggle to God. It doesn’t have to be this hard. There is an easier way. He longs to help you.
For those who are feeling victimized and caught in ED’s identity today:
God decided in advance to adopt us into his own family by bringing us to himself through Jesus Christ. Epheisians 1:5 NLT ~~ You are a child of God. When he looks at you, he doesn’t see an eating disorder, he sees his beautiful daughter or son without flaw.
But we have this treasure in earthen vessels, so that the surpassing greatness of the power will be of God and not from ourselves; we are afflicted in every way, but not crushed; perplexed, but not despairing; persecuted, but not forsaken; struck down, but not destroyed; 2 Corinthians 4:7-12 ~~ The creator of the world is fighting for you. You may feel weak to ED, but know that the one who has all the power and strentgth is on your side. You are a warrior for him!
What truths do you rely on when you are in the midst of a struggle? Please share!