Wednesday, February 27, 2013

when i say no.

i'm giving myself some space as we lead up to easter by participating in lent. one of the various aspects of lent is to fast from something. to give something up.
S   P   A   C   E
not giving something up because i have to. but giving something up that i find a lot of comfort in, or that i lean on in some way, or that i do very often.

i mean, i could have given up a number of things besides desserts, if i'm honest. a social media fast or unnecessary shopping fast would have been helpful also. one thing at a time, i say! it's typical though for me to identify the number of things i run to to fill my time, my mind, give me comfort, help me "cope", and help me disconnect... and then try and "kill them all!". which is hilarious and impossible. i am always running to something to worship. idols are so easy. so available. so enticing.

which is why taking a break from some sort of habit or regular thing is so good and needed. and gosh, it's so helpful to see my weakness as a human.
every couple of hours i am faced with wanting to eat something sweet. and every couple of hours i have to tell myself no. look to something better. something more satisfying.
we're snowed in and i think, what a great baking day! and then i say, no...spend your time somewhere else. where will you spend your time?


and it's hard for me. it's just a sugary treat/hobby but i get so frantic about it. i have conversations with myself like, if i eat this really sugary cereal, it's not a dessert. right, self? 

does this granola bar count as a dessert? no, i could get away with eating it.

why am i staring at these gummy bears. i don't even like gummy bears.

i'll make some bread instead of cookies.

i'm just constantly scrounging around trying to fill the space my NO has left in me.
in fact this week, you might have thought i would lose weight from not eating sweets, but no. at dinner i think, better fill up here! better just keep eating! i'm entitled to eat as much as i want because i don't get sugar.
a desire to fill my stomach points to the desire to fill my heart.
an emptiness in my stomach shines a light on emptiness in my soul.

i am so weak.

and when i say no, i look at my heart response...the scrounging, the deal making with myself, the weakness i proclaim in those things.  and i am compelled to say, i need a savior. and also, hi my name is jami and i struggle with refraining from an unnecessary extra! it's absurd considering the hardship and suffering others face in literal starvation.
it is also absurd when i see the great sacrifice jesus made for me when He died for me.

to face the truth head on is quite ugly.

but instead of beating myself up over it, i remember that God says, there's no condemnation IN Christ. this thing we're celebrating at easter, that Christ came and died for people who were weak and damned. because i am found IN Him, i can celebrate my weakness by repenting and accepting the gift of the blood he shed. i can't stand in my own strength and say that i deserve forgiveness for being "spiritual" and fasting and doing good christian-ee things. i mean, look at me. it's pitiful!
BUT i can stand with his blood covering me. it proclaims that the gospel is all i have.
and that is enough.



that's such good news for this sinner!

------

it's never to late to jump into lent.
this daily guide has been pretty incredible.

also, i'm over here writing about conflict resolution!








24 comments:

  1. I should have a pinterst board called "Jami Nato Kicks my @$$" because you do...well, Jesus does, and that's why I pin a lot of your things to my "Jesus" board. Thanks for being transparent and faithful!

    ReplyDelete
  2. so i read initial lent post about two days after I had decided to give up baking desserts as well, because seriously, i bake way too much. so i can tell you that i feel your pain, my friend. i haven't done perfectly, but i'm a work in progress. it is such a good process..to think about how weak we truly are and our need for a savior. thanks for your thoughts...and good luck avoiding the unnecessary extra.

    ReplyDelete
  3. I read this while eating M&Ms in order to have caffeine, since I gave up every beverage but water for lent. So, timely. This is lovely. Thank you for writing and reminding me of these truths.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. i have considered just taking caffeine pills. LOL.

      Delete
  4. in our weakness He is SO strong!!!

    your post is up now :)

    ReplyDelete
  5. Found your blog recently, and have been back almost every day! Thanks for living (and writing) so transparently. The Gospel is forefront, and it's beautiful. God bless you and your family, Jami!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. thanks for your sweet words and encouragement!

      Delete
  6. this is the thing i battle like every.single.day. it's annoying but like any other stronghold or addiction, He gives me the strength to overcome. boom. maybe if i prayed this before putting anything into my mouth i would be less apt to do it? thinking outloud.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. seriously. just praying before anything. might be life altering!

      Delete
  7. i am the EXACT same way. i gave up desserts and convinced myself that chocolate covered mints are not a dessert. lame. Journey to the Cross has been amazing for me.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. we are good manipulators.
      we need jesus.

      Delete
  8. I find myself reading this and wondering what that dessert is you threw in a picture of. Oh, dear... looks like I have problems too!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. cookie dough pie. it's incred.
      http://www.thenatos.com/2012/10/my-favorite-sweet-treat-recipes.html

      Delete
  9. Nice to know I'm not alone. And good to be reminded it's not too late. Sugar has too much of my heart. I'll start today.

    ReplyDelete
  10. Love these thoughts, Jami! I'm the same way with sweets, and am even struggling with having just given up dessert after dinner, never mind sweets altogether! I'm excited for how He will change me and teach me in this process. Never have I been so aware of my weakness and self-centered ness. Love your blog :)

    ReplyDelete
  11. I love this Jami…You are so articulate with spiritual things. You lay them out very simply where anyone can grab them. I gave up sugar a few weeks ago just to see if I could even do it. Reading you blog is like reading my mind back then. I totally gorged myself at dinner because of it. LOL! I will try to let the no condemnation for those IN Christ sink in. I am the type to totally believe that and tell others that, but not really apply it to myself. I am continually frustrated by my failures each day. And I think if I beat myself up emotionally it will help. But it hasn’t for 30 years. LOL! Where is the proper balance between giving myself grace and then being lazy, which I totally am? I guess every Christian battles this. And the answer is always Christ. I just haven’t learned what that means practically. It’s another realm that I have seen briefly but definitely don’t live in. A realm where his commandments really aren’t burdensome and His joy reigns. I wish I had the directions to that wonderful realm instead of just bumping into it every once in awhile. :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. you are me. we are twins. too bad you're UNKNOWN. ha. i think these exact thoughts through out the day. am i lazy or am depending on God?

      Delete
  12. I gave up seconds...as in what I put on my plate is what I eat, no extra. It is awful...and the second year for it because it was so difficult last year.

    ReplyDelete
  13. Jami, I hope you know how much I've enjoyed your blog. You are so real and genuine and raw. I nod like a bobblehead when i read your posts, yes, and yes and yes again. It's refreshing to find a woman who is honest with her life, because there is such kinship in solidarity. When I read your blog, I think PRAISE JESUS, this woman struggles and God's got her. There's grace for me too! Thanks for not faking it and spilling it all out. And girl, i'm sending you the BEST raw vegan recipe for apple crisp. No sugar, zero. i promise. {I'm not sure if that's cheating since it is a dessert, but it's all natural, and you can try it after lent}

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. omg. send that. although it will have to wait till after lent. ha.

      Delete
  14. I have attempted to give up desserts for 2 weeks during my 7 experiment. The.very.next.day I had a chocolate chai- convincing myself it doesn't count. Even though said chai was drunk at 8 PM like a dessert. Danggit. I'm sort of annoyed that the devil keeps manifesting himself as sweet sugary treats.
    But definitely glad to know I'm not alone.
    Your perspective was so good. We ARE good manipulators. We DO need grace. Lotta grace.
    Definitely more than we need sugar. :)

    ReplyDelete

leave a message after the beep.