Why should I even think about God when I’m trying to lose weight? I got myself into this mess. It’s up to me to get myself out, right?

That was my mindset most of my adult life. At 430 pounds when a cardiac surgeon gave me five years to live, I figured out that what I was doing was not working for me in any shape or form.

Death Sentence

It’s crazy the things you think about when you’ve been given a death sentence. It’s maddening. It made me think of death row inmates who sit there for years knowing their death is imminent. Most of them also know that according to the law, they deserve it.

On some level I thought the same thing. I felt like I did not deserve to live. I’d willfully put too much food into my mouth and the excess ended up all over me! The issues I had, super morbid obesity, high blood pressure, diabetes, congestive heart failure and more, were a result of me eating what I wanted, when I wanted and however much I wanted.

My Destiny Was Destruction

By the way, I was doing exactly what the Bible said. My destiny was destruction. My god was my stomach. My glory was in my shame. My mind was set on earthly things.

In other words I was living out Philippians 3:19, but I wanted to be living out Philippians 3:20. I wanted to be sure my citizenship was in heaven. I wanted to be eagerly awaiting the coming of my Savior, Jesus Christ.

Oh, I was a Christian. I had accepted Christ when I was seven years old and stole candy from the grocery store. I never stole again, but I couldn’t stay away from candy and other sweets. I put eating what I craved and wanted before following God with all my desires.

Who Or What Was My Master?

Although the Bible doesn’t tell us not to eat sugar, it does warn us against being gluttonous. It also tells us in 1 Corinthians 6:12 NASB, “All things are lawful for me, but not all things are profitable. All things are lawful for me but I will not be mastered by anything.”

Sugar was my master. It controlled me. I did not control it. Although I saw it as my comfort, companion, protector and friend, it was actually a wolf in the clothing of what I thought was a sweet and innocent sheep. However, it was out to kill, steal and destroy any influence my life would have for the Kingdom of God. It was trying to take me out of the game of life.

No one starts out to become an addict. It’s not what anyone aspires to be. Just like the one who takes that first drink of alcohol or first hit of a drug, no one knew my first taste of sugar would end up with me becoming an all-out, committed, diehard sugar addict.

I’ve had people say to me, “Well, you could be addicted to worse things.” I don’t personally know about drugs and alcohol, but I do know about sugar. It’s a sly and silent killer. Because we love the taste, and it is literally in everything we eat, we don’t recognize the deadly harm it can bring.

Is It Really All That Bad?

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s 2017 statistics over 71% of Americans over age 20 are overweight or obese. When I first began checking these statistics back in 2013 those figures were about 66%.  We are becoming increasing more obese.

Stop a minute and think. That means only 29% of Americans are in the normal or underweight categories. Those who are overweight or beyond require more medical help, thus needing more medical procedures, costing more money and tax dollars, and have greater and more deadly health issues.

When I weighed 430 pounds I had several co-morbidities. Co-morbidity means a person has the presence of two or more chronic diseases or conditions that interact with each other worsening the course of both. My first was obesity in the form of super morbid obesity, which is the highest classification of weight issues.

In addition to that, or because of that, I had diabetes, high blood pressure and congestive heart failure. Other co-morbidities in those who are obese, morbidly obese or super morbidly obese include gout, osteoarthritis, gall bladder disease, kidney stones, digestive diseases and cancer and early death, thus my death sentence of only have five years to live.

Why Are We Killing Ourselves?

Why are the numbers going up? Why are we putting on more weight? From where I stand,  the blame lays square on the shoulders of sugar and high fructose corn syrup plus the myriads of other names food manufacturers hide sugar under.

Food manufacturers are responding to what we want and we want things to taste better. What they’ve learned is if they put in more sugar no one notices because all they care about is how it tastes. I mean, we only live once, right?

That’s exactly right, but we don’t understand the harmful effects too much of a seemingly good thing has on our bodies.

What God Says

Does God have anything to say about this crisis? If you’re looking for a scripture that says don’t eat sugar, it’s not exactly in the Bible. God cares more about us putting Him first above everything else. He wants us to prosper and be in good health., (3 John 2).

More than that He wants us to choose life, not death. It’s a simple choice really. He tells us in Deuteronomy 30:19 that He wants us to choose life “so that you and your descendants might live.” We can stop this spiraling epidemic by not passing it on to our descendants to that they have the possibility of living a healthy life.

Of course, we want to live, but how to we make that choice? It’s really pretty simple. “You can make this choice by loving the Lord your God, obeying Him and committing yourself firmly to Him. This is the key to your life,” (Deut. 30:20 NLT).

Then in the New Testament He gives us even more detail about how to change our lifestyle to one that involves healthy living. He even tells us He will help us transform in every way, even in how we eat.

“So here’s what I want you to do, God helping you: Take your everyday, ordinary life—your sleeping, eating, going-to-work, and walking-around life—and place it before God as an offering…Fix your attention on God. You’ll be changed from the inside out. Readily recognize what he wants from you, and quickly respond to it,” (Romans 12:1-2 MSG).

Transformation Is Possible

If there is one thing God is for, it’s our transformation. He helped me lose over 250 pounds and keep it off for six years. More than that, He led me to understand that to transform on the outside, it first takes changing on the inside.

That’s why I’m offering my foundational course that will help you begin your own Journey to Transformation. This course will  lead you to experience your own internal and external changes.

After this course you will never be on a diet again. You will be on a forever lifestyle change journey that will affect every part of you—body, soul and spirit.

Doors are open now for our 16-week course Journey to Transformation, but will close firmly on Feb. 15. Go here for more information and to sign up.

Also our free live, online workshop will be Monday, Feb. 11. Register Here to get all the details.

Here’s the one-two punch. 1. Go HERE for the Free Workshop. 2. Go HERE to signup for the 16-week course, Journey to Transformation. This course is only offered twice a year and is a prerequisite for being invited to join Overcomers Community.

I will  see you in the Journey to Transformation group and the Free Workshop!

Teresa Shields Parker
Teresa Shields Parker is a Christian weight loss author, coach and speaker, who has lost more than 250 pounds. Her book, "Sweet Grace: How I Lost 250 Pounds and Stopped Trying to Earn God's Favor", is the number 1 Christian Weight Loss Memoir on Amazon. She has four more books, "Sweet Journey to Transformation: Practical Steps to Lose Weight and Live Healthy", "Sweet Freedom: Losing Weight and Keeping It Off With God's Help", "Sweet Change: True Stories of Transformation" and "Sweet Hunger: Developing An Appetite for God." Sweet Grace and Sweet Freedom study guides are available as well. All books are on Amazon and under the book tab on her website. Her Coaching Programs can be found under the Weight Loss tab. To book Teresa for your next event, check the Speaking tab. Also check out her blog at TeresaShieldsParker.com.