December 2013 - Rachelle Adams

God Taught Me to Value What I Was Being Taught

I’ve been a church goer my whole life, even before I professed my faith in Christ. As long as I can remember, I have had a genuine love for church, though that love may look a little different now than it did while I was growing up. 

Now, I love corporate worship primarily because of the opportunity to sit under good teaching and to connect with God during the singing. 
Then, I loved corporate worship primarily for the singing (yes, they were hymns; our youth group jammed to Pass It On) and because I got to hang out with my best buddies. 
I had a really cute notebook I took to church with me. It was kind of a teal green color, and it was really a book cover for spiral notebooks. So, when I filled up a spiral notebook, I could replace it and still have the cute teal cover. Brilliant!
I started taking the notebook to church after I was shushed a few too many times while ripping open offering envelopes to write notes to my friends. Ah, yes, as you may have suspected, my cute notebook wasn’t for TAKING notes during the sermon; it was for PASSING notes during the sermon. 
I would ask you not to tell on me, but the note passing would not surprise a soul. I will NEVER forget the time my pastor pulled me aside and talked to me about my behavior during church. It turns out my talking with my friend in the balcony (you know who you are! Haha!) and passing notes distracted him when he preached. MORTIFIED! I felt awful. And I was embarrassed. Now I’m reliving it. Oh my. I’m so thankful he was kind, gentle, and gracious when he spoke to me. 
He reminds me of how the Lord deals with me. 
Fast forward to my college days at North Greenville. I don’t remember the exact moment I started taking notes during sermons, but there was a definite transition from passing notes to taking notes. Lots and lots of notes. I have filled numerous notebooks over the years taking notes during sermons. 
And I paid more attention to what was being taught. 
Through the process of taking notes, God taught me to value what I was being taught. 
This wasn’t an overnight process. It took years. Sanctification often looks like that – very gradual, lasting change.
I want that for my physical health. Just like I went from passing notes to taking notes, I want to go from apathy regarding my body to viewing my body and my physical health the way God does.
I want God to teach me to value my body and my health. He created my body, knit me together in my mama’s womb (Psalm 139:13). His Spirit dwells within me (Romans 8:9-11)! Both of those things AMAZE me. 
So …
Why did I start this journey at 323.6 pounds?
Simple. 
My cognitive beliefs and my functional beliefs do not line up in this area. 
So I need Jesus! I need the grace of God. Just like He so graciously worked in my life over the course of a decade to teach me to value what I was being taught, I believe He will take the next several years (yes, years!) to teach me to value the one and only body He gave me because He made it and dwells in it. 
I’m looking forward to all He has to teach me! I’ll be ready with my notebook!
Oh, by the way, don’t be surprised if you try to pass me a note during church and I give you the stink eye. It’s because I know it doesn’t take much for me to regress to teenage Rachelle. :0)
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Week 14 Weigh-In

Hi, everyone! I’m sorry I didn’t post last week. I’ve been in a bit of a funk regarding this whole weight loss thing.

The funk isn’t just about not wanting to exercise or wanting to be able to eat pizza every day (seriously, I would) or having a deep love for deep fried appetizers and mini candy bars. This funk is really about me being a bratty Christian, one who is reckless with grace.

That reality struck me yesterday as I cleaned off a pile of candy wrappers from my nightstand.

“God, thank You for Jesus. Can I eat all the candy bars I want, too?”

“God, thank You for being enough, and I know You’re enough, but could I have more pizza?”

“Jesus, I know You gave your life away for me, but I don’t want to get out of bed and exercise.”

“God, this surely can’t be what You meant by an abundant life, right? I mean, an abundant life would include a lot more fast food. In my humble opinion.”

I had a particularly bratty moment when I didn’t get what I wanted one day. “James said we would be blessed in the doing! I don’t feel very blessed in the doing right now!” (See James 1:25.)

You see, I knew in the moment that I was misappropriating God’s Word for my circumstances, but I didn’t care.

Reckless.

I know the sacrifice God made in giving us His Son. I know the sacrifices Jesus made for me. I know the grace upon grace He gives – and that He gives MORE grace (James 4:6).

But I stomp my feet and throw fits (sometimes literally, sometimes figuratively) and demand what I want. Every time, I’m telling Jesus He isn’t enough. Every time, I’m telling Him my way is better. Every time, I’m telling Him He doesn’t know what He’s doing with my life.

Reckless.

But.

Here’s the beautiful, glorious, gracious truth:

He loves me anyway.

He won’t stop loving me.

When He looks at me, He sees Jesus, and He loves me.

He knows I’m broken, and He offers healing.

He knows what I want, and He offers me better things.

He offers forgiveness through Christ when I sin, even when I’m really bratty about it.

The same is true for you, believers, and can be true for those of you who don’t believe if you place your trust in Christ.

This doesn’t mean God won’t discipline me or allow me to go through trials. He has, does, and will continue doing so. And I’m thankful for His discipline! I’m thankful for the trials! They’re making me more like Christ. As evidenced by my regular foot stomping (and not in the cool, Irish dancing kind of way), I still have a long, long way to go. I’m thankful the Holy Spirit is taking me down that journey, one step at a time.

I’ve been pondering some of the ways I can tell God has been working in me over the last 3 months (yes! 3 months!), and I thought I’d share them with you (though small they may be):

  • My typical school routine included purchasing fast food for breakfast during my commute. Often, it was Sonic. When I went to Sonic, I purchased at least a large, sometimes a Route 44, Diet Dr. Pepper with vanilla, and I slurped it as I rode the elevator to my class on the second floor of the school building. For at least the last two months of school, I took the stairs on my way to class, and I haven’t had a soda in 3 months. God is gracious!
  • We participated in a scavenger hunt a couple of weeks ago. MANY trips up and down the stairs and all over the church building were involved – with 10 children – 8 of which were BOYS. Three months ago, I don’t think I would have made it past the first couple of clues, but I stuck it out for the entire scavenger hunt. God is gracious!
  • A few days ago, we helped a friend move out of her second story apartment. Three months ago, I don’t know if I would have been able to help, especially with the constant trips up and down the stairs. But I did it! God is gracious!
  • Three months ago, I rarely went to the grocery store, and I had grown very slack about meal planning. While acknowledging I still have a LONG way to go in this area, I’ve seen definite improvements. God is gracious!
  • I used to make multiple trips to QT for snacks during the week (there is a QT close to school). Now, I don’t remember the last time I purchased something to eat there. God is gracious!
  • It had been YEARS since I exercised regularly, and exercising has become a priority for me (most weeks!). God is gracious!
  • I lost 1.5 pounds since my last post, bringing my total weight lost up to 38.3 pounds and my current weight down to 285.3 pounds. God is gracious!
So, what about you? Is there an area in your life where you stomp your feet and insist your way is better than God’s way? For me, it’s food. For you, it could be something completely different. Maybe you won’t submit your finances to God. Maybe you’ve sensed God calling you to change jobs or to move into a neighborhood you don’t like. Maybe God has been nudging you to go on a mission trip to meet the needs of others and share the Gospel with them. Maybe He wants you to watch less TV and spend more time in His Word and prayer. Maybe there’s a relationship in your life that needs mending. I could go on, but I bet I don’t need to. You know what it is without me providing more possibilities.
What’s stopping you? 
Christmas is a week from today. God has already given you the greatest gift EVER – His Son, Jesus, God with us. What’s He asking you to give to Him? I bet you won’t even have to wrap it. :O)
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Week 12 Weigh-In

I hope you all had a wonderful Thanksgiving. We enjoyed time with part of our family, and we’re looking forward to seeing everyone else over Christmas. 

My eating has been all over the place. I have the munchies non-stop. Thankfully, I’ve kept up with exercising. 
I lost 2.9 pounds, bringing my total weight loss up to 36.8 pounds and my current weight down to 286.8 pounds. Considering the munchies … and the Japanese food … and the Chili’s … and the two trips to CiCi’s pizza … good grief, I’m pleased!
Now I need to get back on track for real! I have a goal for the end of the year, and I want to reach it!
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