When your appetite is gone

anorexiaI have a confession.

A hidden secret that I’ve been keeping in the dark.

Something I would never want to admit to any other Christian that I know because I am so ashamed of it.

Sometimes, I struggle with anorexia.

Life gets too busy and I lose my appetite to eat between all my running around from one place and one task to another.

Or I get lazy and don’t want to spend time preparing a healthy meal so I just skip a meal. Or two. Or three.

And other times I have a delicious meal sitting right in front of me just calling my name. But I have no desire to take a single bite no matter how tasty it looks.

Sometimes, I just don’t want to eat.

It’s been a struggle I’ve had for years since I was still a little girl.

Sometimes I overcome it, sometimes I don’t.

In the end, it always leaves me feeling weak and hopeless with a lack of desire for living life to its fullest.

And no matter how hard I try, it’s a battle I have to always fight.

But the truth is that I know I’m not the only one fighting this battle.

Because sometimes those who are brave enough to be vulnerable will let me in on their secret: they are fighting it too.

And maybe, just maybe, so are you.

Because this anorexia I battle with isn’t with physical food, but with spiritual food.

Sometimes life gets too busy and in the midst of all my running around I just don’t “have time” to read God’s Word.

Other times I am just too lazy to wake up early and pick up God’s Word and read it before I start my day. So I skip out on reading it first in the morning. Then later on in the day.

And other times I see it lying on my shelf when I have time, when I have energy, when I have no excuse not to pick it up and read it. But I have no desire.

So I just let it continue to collect dust.

It’s been a struggle from the moment I first learn to read until now.

Sometimes I overcome it, and sometimes I don’t.

And when I don’t it always leaves me feeling weak and hopeless inside and I lose my desire to make the most of every day that God has given me.

We all know the dangers of anorexia.

It leads to a delusional idea of your body image and it leaves you weak and hungry, and sometimes it even leads to death.

But what we forget sometimes is that the danger of what I call “spiritual anorexia” is even more severe.

It also leads you to a delusional image, not of your body, but of your self-worth and your purpose in life.

The second you stop reading the Word you slowly allow your mind to be filled with things of this world that tell you that life is all about living for yourself. That tells you what you need to wear, buy, eat  and be to be happy. And you forget what this life on earth is all about.

It leaves you weak and vulnerable to the attacks of the enemy and you become an easy target for his lies because you no longer fill your mind with God’s truth.

And in the end… it can lead you to death. The kind where instead of living for God, you begin living for yourself and what you do brings no life or hope to the people around you.

I don’t know about you, but that’s not how I want to live my life.

Always feeling empty, hungry, and weak.

And the only way to overcome this battle? By self-discipline. And a lot of it.

There’s a few things important to note when  it comes to reading God’s Word.

First, just like the three meals we typically have each day, we also need to be consistent with reading the Bible every single day.

When you read the Bible is up to you but you need to be reading it, not when you feel like it but when you choose to do it. You plan ahead when you will eat your meal whether it’s in your kitchen at breakfast, in your work breakroom at lunch, or in a restaurant at dinner. And you need to set a time and a place of when you will read the Bible and stick to it.

Second, just like a regular meal you eat every day, the things you eat need to be balanced. You shouldn’t be eating only meat every day. Only vegetables (as good as they are for you). Or only cake (as nice as that would be). You need to fill your diet with a variety of foods from different food groups. And in the same way you need to be reading not just the books and the chapters from the Bible that you like, but every single one of them.  

As encouraging as it would be to read Psalms every day I also need to read the gospels to learn from Jesus’ life. I need to read from the Old Testament to learn from Israel’s history and the great men and women of God. I need to read the prophets to know what to expect ahead. I need to read Paul’s letters to know how to live a Christian life. I need to read it all. Yes, even Leviticus.

How do you do this? It’s quite simple: read through the whole Bible in one year. There are a million Bible plans out there, you just need to find the one that works best for you. And once you do it will not only keep you accountable for reading every day but you will also be filling your mind with a balanced meal from God’s Word that will transform your life.

Last but not least, it’s just as important to not fall into the trap of being a spiritual anorexic, but also to not fall into the trap of a spiritual glutton.

What is a “spiritual glutton”? It’s a person who has no problem reading the Bible all day and all night, BUT they never put what they read into action.

See, if all you did was eat all day long but you never lived your life and never exercised then as good as eating is it will still lead you to a problem: being overweight. And in the same way if all you do is become a great theologian in Bible because you read it all day long yet you never live out your faith and never put it into action then it’s almost pointless.

So my question to you is this: which one are you today?

Are you a spiritual anorexic, a spiritual glutton, or a healthy Christian?

Because often times we tend to fall on one side of the spectrum or the other.

My challenge to you today is this: don’t be okay with living on empty.

Don’t be okay with feeling weak and helpless.

Don’t be okay with letting your Bible collect dust on a shelf.

God wants you live your life wholeheartedly for Him.

To feel healthy and alive.

To live with purpose.

And you can’t do it when you’re not filling your mind with His Word and when you’re always just getting by on an empty stomach.

If you have lost your appetite for God’s Word don’t feel bad about yourself. It’s something most Christian’s struggle with one point in life.

But be sure to do something about it today.

Be sure to pick up your Bible and read it.

Be sure to find a good Bible reading plan that you can follow.

Be sure to put into action what God calls you to do through His Word.

Be sure to not let a day go by without your spiritual meal.

Be blessed and don’t forget to eat that meal today ! Anna… 

“It is written, “‘Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that comes from the mouth of God.’” – Matthew 4:4 BibleRelated posts:

girl-reading-bibleempty-stomachforgotten1Image creator unknown. Please respond if you know the author so credit can be given.

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27 thoughts on “When your appetite is gone

  1. Pingback: I’ve Been Nominated: The Sunshine Award | booklovers1

  2. Wonderfully written! I really like how you balance the dangers of spiritual anorexia and the dangers of the spiritual glutton. Spiritual gluttony is not often addressed, but is just as unhealthy. Well said!

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    • Thanks Rebecca. Spiritual “gluttony” (don’t even know if that’s the correct term to use) is definitely not mentioned as often as it should be. We all know how important it is to read the Bible but we forget that it’s just as important to put it into practice.

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    • Thanks Karen. It is definitely easy to get too busy with our hectic lives and forget to prioritize things the right way. Spending time with God should always be our most important priority. Without constant communication with Him it is easy to get off track and start focusing on the wrong things in life.

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  3. This is so transparent and relatable…love love love this post! I am encouraged by you today. Thanks friend, Mary

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  4. THIS!!! awhile ago I just shared to my group in church how I felt last month, and I knew there’s a problem. I just don’t know how to call it, but definitely this is what it is.

    I used to have my quiet time every morning and before I sleep, often after reading my bible I was able to memorize a verse, blog or share what God hath taught me and even try to come up with a project (7 day project) on how to live by it.

    At this point of time, I don’t know how things stole my quiet time everyday, that made me missed my readings. And it bothers me that God might not rebuke me anymore, or fear to not feel His presence. But God is FAITHFUL! so GOOD! so MERCIFUL! that made me feel I’m not alone with this kind of struggle.

    Reminding me that no matter what I’m going through right now, He is there and will forever be there. 🙂 An answered prayer, God’s rebuke and conviction! He just warmth my cold heart and I’m praying from this day on, He’ll put up that fire again on our hearts, seeking Him through His word. 🙂

    God bless your heart Anna! ♡♡♡ Thank you so much for sharing this 🙂

    ♡ Then shall ye call upon me, and ye shall go and pray unto me, and I will hearken unto you. And ye shall seek me, and find me, when ye shall search for me with all your heart. ~ Jeremiah 29:12-13

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    • That’s great that you figured out what was missing in your life Mae. I think we don’t realize how important it is to have that daily quiet time with God. It’s easy to overlook it and put it on the end of our priority list but once we do we can see how damaging it is in our life.

      May God truly continue to stir that fire in our hearts to desire Him over anything that tries to steal that precious time in our lives with Him.

      I’m so glad (like you) that He is always right beside me, loving me no less even when I know I’m not doing the best with prioritizing my time with Him.

      May He help you redeem your quiet time with Him. Be blessed!

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  5. This was a wonderful and effective comparison between the natural and the spiritual. I am sorry to hear that you struggle with Anorexia, as I have a 22 year old daughter who struggles with Bulemia and the worst part is that I, in and of myself, am powerless against is. It is just as you said, it takes discipline/self control and determination in order to conquer it and even then, the propensity towards the behaviors still lurk. I feel that by you seeing the parallel between the spiritual and the physical, you will be able to effectively curb your actions. You site and its posts are extremely elegant; please know that your willingness to openness and vulnerability makes you and your messages all the more striking and beautiful! God bless you.

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    • Thanks Tina. I’m actually not struggling with “physical” anorexia. I was hoping no one would confuse those two in this post but I am sorry to hear about your daughter’s struggle with bulimia. I have had a few girls in my life that have struggled with eating disorders and it really is tragic because it affects the way they think and feel about themselves as well as how they live their life.

      But with God’s help I have seen some of these girls overcome these disorders in their life and find hope, healing, and recovery with Jesus. It’s definitely not an easy process, but it’s possible with God. I pray that your daughter will be able to conquer hers with God’s help and with the support of loving family and friends around her. May God bless you and use you in her life as a source of encouragement!

      Thank you for your kind words. It’s not easy to be vulnerable, but I try to be as open as possible here. No one gets anything out of hiding behind a mask. Hope you have a blessed week!

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  6. Thank you very much, this is an excellent message. I especially liked your point on being a ‘spiritual glutton.’ I read my Bible every day but often times I’ll just wolf it down and miss the living it out part. Thank you for the reminder!

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    • Thanks Leah. You can definitely miss many important things God wants to teach you through His Word if you try to read through it too fast. Better to read a little and get a lot out of it instead of reading a lot and getting little out of it!

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