I continue to be challenged by this book, but in a good way… although it doesn’t always feel like it right then. It’s definitely changing my thinking. I know it might be frustrating for those who may read this post series without the book, but I simply cannot share everything. Please, if you’ve been kicking around the thought of “should I get the book”, just get it. And then go through it one day at a time. In fact, if you want to go through it with me, start at the day one post.
I am simply amazed by the change I’m seeing in my mind. Yes, I can tell my body is shrinking, but you have to understand that my mind has been a diet and body image battle ground for 28 years. It rather looks like that scene from Inception where “Cobb” and his wife are building their own place in the dream world. They have all kinds of things from the past and they’ve built skyscrapers and buildings on buildings. And when he goes back, it’s crumbling. You also see where his wife has hidden a truth she wanted to forget. I feel like this is a picture of my own life where I’ve locked away the truth about my body and who I am in Christ, and bought into the lies that this world is my home. I’ve plastered the walls of my mind with worldly images and ideas. I’ve built skyscrapers filled with calorie counts, point values, nutritional percentages, “tone your whatever” exercise plans, and a myriad of “gee I wish I looked like her” images.
Do not conform any longer to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is – his good, pleasing and perfect will ~ Romans 12:2 (NIV)
You see, it isn’t enough for us to allow God to “tear down the rubble”. We have to put something in it’s place. We have to let Him plant and grow the truth in our minds. If we just remove the lies, something else will take it’s place, and if we aren’t intentional about what that is, it could be more lies.
I like how the author used the rebuilding of the temple in Nehemiah to illustrate how we must hold a hammer in one hand and a sword in the other. We must fight to keep the enemy from regaining the ground we’ve taken captive to Christ. Then we went through the three types of “taunting cynics” we might encounter as this rebuilding takes place.
“…legalism and fixed formulas are incompatible with our freedom ~ Thin Within p. 119
We looked at the “legalist”, the “manipulator”, and the “achiever”. I know I’ve been all three at one time or another.
Yet, somewhere deep, like “Mal” (Inception), I know the truth. Now, of course Leo’s character in the movie is not God, but I am asking God to renew a right spirit within me. I want Him to tear down those strongholds and grow what’s been squelched and hidden by all the rubble.
Like I said, it’s not enough just to “reject” the old thoughts and behaviors, you have to put something in it’s place. We have to “furnish the halls of the mind” with Truth. And that starts by recognizing the difference between law and grace.
I thought it was fun to identify the statements as “law” and “grace”. Then we are given a list of “Who I am in Christ” statements.
So, I started working on that bookmark I mentioned the other day but then remembered that I already have one lol. Of course, it isn’t “pretty”, but it is functional. I may still finish the one I was working on, but for now, this one will do. It was given to me by a gal at our co-op like two years ago. I’ve had it tacked to my corkboard in my office. It’s now in my book.
And God is able to make all grace abound to you, so that in all things at all times, having all that you need, you will abound in every good work. ~ 2 Corinthians 9:8 (NIV)
Observations and Corrections
So, things were going along fine. Zero to five… not a problem. Until once again, my franny met with the sofa. I actually thought I would try sitting at the coffee table with my cupcake and fork… attempting to “eat mindfully” while the TV was on… starting above a zero (silly girl, that doesn’t work). Yeah, that lasted about three bites and then the “old brain programing” kicked in. I still paid attention, I just stopped savoring each bite and since I started eating above a zero, I had difficulty stopping. Two cupcakes, a few crunchy almond/blueberry things, and a piece of chocolate/coconut bark later… I was really angry with myself. But I stopped the club of condemnation in it’s tracks and turned to God instead. I still consider this progress.
I do not set aside the grace of God, for if righteousness could be gained through the law, Christ died for nothing! ~ Galatians 2:21 (NIV)