Have you ever had something hit you out of nowhere? Everything is going great, no real problems. God’s presence is real and tangible and then something happens like a sucker punch out of nowhere. It sends you reeling feeling as if you will collapse at any minute.
This happened to me Wednesday night. I was getting ready to go to bed. I was going to fix a typo I saw in the blog post I’d done that morning, jot down a few ideas for Thursday’s group and go to bed by 11.
I tried to open the back end of my website, called the dashboard, but all I got was a blank screen. I emailed the web designer who told me to call the hosting company.
I won’t bore you with the details. In the end, the site held firm. No credit card or personal information is stored on my site so nothing was compromised.
At 2 a.m. on Thursday morning my son, who was working on the site, said, “Are you sure you want to open Sweet Change Weight Loss Coaching and Accountability Group?”
Not being able to get into my website was kind of like a test punch, but the real sucker punch was the idea that some force out there in the atmosphere might be conspiring to shut down this program. I was sad.
The next day, God called me to lay on my face before Him. The song, “Break Every Chain,” was on repeat softly. I prayed, “Come Holy Spirit, teach me.”
I began to read the book of Proverbs. I was enjoying reading the Passion translation when all of a sudden one verse captured my full attention.
“Laying your life down in tender surrender before the Lord will bring life, prosperity and honor as your reward.”1
In every other version I read, it says in humility and reverence. The phrase tender surrender grabbed me by the lapels and said, “Meditate on this.”
My journey has definitely been one of giving up what I craved. It is in relinquishing something that meant more to me than my Lord that I rediscovered the close fellowship and friendship with God that had been missing for way too long.
God would have been fully in His rights to put a gun to my head and say, “Hand over the sugar or I shoot!” He never did. He waited until I asked Him what to do. And even for 30 years when I ignored what He told me, He never ordered me to stop eating every sugary morsel in sight.
I stopped asking and He stopped telling me the answer. When I came totally to the end of every option and saw myself going back towards super morbid obesity, I began to listen again. I had turned off His voice in that one area. Any other area, I told God it was OK to talk to me about. Just leave my sugar alone.
I was listening to an individual tell his personal story of recovery from alcoholism. He explained that alcohol is just one molecule away from sugar. I didn’t see it coming. It hit me like another sucker punch, only this was a healthy sucker punch.
I realized I am a sugar addict. To get free I must do exactly what God told me years ago, I must give up sugar. That day I laid down my addiction in tender surrender. No gun was held to my head only arms wide open wide welcoming me to lay my head on His chest and breathe deeply of who He is.
I discovered the power of grace in a completely new way that day. His grace is sufficient for me. For His power is made perfect in my weakness.2
God tells us we can’t be His disciples unless we give up everything we own.3 He told the rich, young ruler to sell all his possessions. He could have asked anything of Him, but He asked the one thing He knew the man was placing before God.4
And the man went away sad because he had many possessions.5
What is God asking you to give up? For many of you I know it is some kind of food that has you bound and chained. It’s really the last sanctified sin, the one we as Christians seem to hang on to and believe it is all right.
On my face before God, I pondered the fact that the force of evil wants to shut down Sweet Change Weight Loss Coaching & Accountability Group. I’m not a person who sees the devil behind everything that happens. However, I know this was malicious handiwork. So of course I bound him in Jesus name and contacted prayer warriors to pray.
Still I feel like what I’m doing is not worth the forces of evil paying attention to. So I asked God why would the devil bother with this group? What God told me was an epiphany for me and gave me a strong resolve to fight in prayer for every person who has the courage to do whatever it takes to become a part of Sweet Change.
For some of you this group will be a healthy sucker punch, one to propel you towards victory—body, soul and spirit.
I’m reprinting what I feel God spoke to me. Then I want you to get in that humble place before God and ask Him these questions. What is it You are requiring of me? Am I to trust You for finances for this group? Are You calling me to do something radical and earth-changing? Am I to be part of the army You are calling to rise up?
I am calling a healthy army now. I am calling every person bound and chained by food addiction to surrender the thing they crave to Me! Many are called and you know who you are. Few will be chosen because few will stand up and say, “Choose me.” Those who speak up and take action will be chosen.
I am calling My army to rise up. I am calling an army of destiny to follow Me into battle. I am calling an army ready and fit to follow Me into the tough physical challenges ahead.
I am calling those who have hidden the gifts I have given them away. I am calling you to uncover your gifts in specific assignments within this army. I am calling forth an army whose challenge is to let Me break every chain holding them from My presence.
This army will then begin to lead others to freedom. They will show those they come into contact with how to break every chain holding them from living in fullness. They will show them how to be set free because they have experienced being set free themselves by My power.
This army must be ready to rise up at a moment’s notice. Like the five wise virgins,6 they must be prepared. For many this means losing weight, being full of energy with my Spirit dwelling in a clean and healthy temple.
Only those ready and prepared will be able to serve in the army. Will you rise up? Will you answer My call?
Friends, I know this message was specifically for those who will join this group and learn how to live in victory. It’s for all who know they cannot do it without good support, mentoring and accountability.
I clearly see those in this group going forward to set others free. It’s a strategy God has orchestrated many times through history for different things He wants His people to understand.
This is not a one-time call. It is an on-going call as this group will be open to enter at any time. However, the sooner you enter the more you will learn and receive from to get the freedom you so desperately need.
What action will you take? Go HERE to enter Sweet Change Weight Loss Coaching & Accountability Group.
1 Proverbs 22:4, Passion Translation
2 2 Cor 12:9
3 Luke 14:33
4 Matthew 10:17-21
5 Matthew 10:22
6 Matthew 25:4
Sweet Change Weight Loss Coaching & Accountability Group, a new take on living healthy through a total renovation of body, soul and spirit. She chronicles her journey in the memoir, Sweet Grace, and the practical application workbook, Sweet Grace Study Guide. Get a free chapter of her memoir at Teresa Shields Parker.com. Connect with her there or on her Facebook page.