Wellness Revelation Bible Study by Alisa Keeton
This week we studied Week 2 in the Wellness Revelation Bible Study! Be Free!!! The focal verse for the week was Romans 12:1.
Here are the main points that I got out of the chapter 2 reading:
- We often fill ourselves with things that we think will bring us satisfaction, things that we put value in or on. However putting value on things that don’t truly satisfy will steal from us, rather than actually bring fulfillment. For me, food was one. I thought it was bringing me comfort when my emotions were in a negative place. But, what it really brought was addiction, shame, an out of shape body, tiredness, and spiritual bondage in my mind.
- Even when I thought I was trying to make changes by dieting or exercising, I was still enslaved because the food consumed me….shopping, menu planning, prepping, logging, counting calories or carbs, or whatever (depending on the diet).
- Good things (that God created for our good…..like food) can be used incorrectly. And, when used incorrectly it gives birth to sin, which gives birth to bondage or addiction. What starts as a necessary behavior (eating for survival) becomes more about the food, and less about God’s goodness and fuel. Eating becomes a false high and takes us captive to receive momentary payoffs. Oh….this is SO TRUE!
- Once we become enslaved, we lose our sensitivity to God. God wants to heal our brokenness, the deep places that caused us to turn to food instead of Him. I know for years I did not realize the deeper issues. He has begun revealing those to me over time, gently, and for my good. I pray you allow Him to do the same with you!
- How we live our lives is how we express our worship. Everything we do can point to Him, giving others direction who may be seeking a better way. But, it can also lead others astray, if we are not living our lives in worship to God alone.
- He desires to reveal to us the areas we are not fully committed or believing in Him, so that He can live out His power through us, giving us purpose and His strength. Then, He gets the proper glory and we receive joy. Idols will be a distraction to us during this process.
- Moses delivered God’s message: “Let my people go, so that they may worship me.” (Ex. 7:16; 8:1, 20; 9:1, 13; and 10:3). I never really paid attention to the second part of that command…..so that they may worship me. But, there is a purpose for it being there….God can’t truly be worshipped when the devotion is split, and when the Israelites were in slavery to Pharoah, their devotion was to him! To be free, is to worship God alone!!
- We cannot trust our minds to know what is best for us! My mind, because of satan, can be very deceptive! Fasting is a way to break free from our own desires, and to concentrate on God and what He desires for us. We can achieve some clarity from the mental fog that satan keeps us in. It clears our eyes to see and opens our ears to hear from God. It also gives our control over to God….in faith. And, it brings Spiritual healing. Isaiah 58:6-8 tells us that when we truly fast with our mind set on God alone, “[our] light will break forth like the dawn, and [our] healing will quickly appear.”
- We fight satan’s temptations with the Word of God. When we fast from things that comfort us, (food, or whatever it is that comforts you….sometimes it’s Netflix or social media for me, too!) we are released from our chains so that we can become strong in Christ! We fast to enable Him to develop our hearts and minds to respond to others like He does.
- This is the fasting God loves:
"Is not this the fast that I choose: to loose the bonds of wickedness, to undo the straps of the yoke, to let the oppressed go free, and to break every yoke? Is it not to share your bread with the hungry and bring the homeless poor into your house; when you see the naked, to cover him, and not to hide yourself from your own flesh? Then shall your light break forth like the dawn, and your healing shall spring up speedily; your righteousness shall go before you; the glory of the Lord shall be your rear guard. Then you shall call, and the Lord with answer; you shall cry, and he will say, 'Here I am.'" Isaiah 58:6-9, ESV
In the RESPOND section, I noted that this wellness journey is about Love having His way with us. We are simply seeking Jesus and the freedom that comes from drawing closer in relationship with Him. This section focused a lot on fasting. And, some great steps to take as you prepare to fast. Some of those were:
- Set aside a time that works best for you and your schedule to fast. No stressful, busy days, but days that you are in a restful state of mind.
- Talk to God off and on throughout the fasting period, especially when you feel hungry. In those moments turn to God’s Word, “ingest” it, and pray. Because your body is free from chemicals, digesting, and metabolizing, we can be excited about the mental space we are creating for the Lord to speak! Our hearts and minds are being cleansed, or detoxed! In our weakness, His Word makes us strong and comes to life.
- Stay hungry to connect and realign with the Lord. When you can’t settle yourself or find peace, it’s time to end the fast.
- Drink lots of water, stay hydrated. Juice is also acceptable.
- Journal what the Lord is showing you.
- Expect mild symptoms….hunger pains and irritability were a couple I experienced. If you are used to a lot of caffeine, headaches will probably occur.
- Be cheerful! Don’t walk around as though you’re weak, or sad because of the lack of food. Don’t think about how “strong” you are for being able to fast. Smile and be joyful for what the Lord will do in and through you.
Then the hunger scale was discussed. A scale of 1-5. 1 being ravenously hungry. 5 being stuffed. With 2 – 4 being where you want to fall. 2 being hungry, 3 being content, and 4 being satisfied. By learning to be more aware of hunger and how it feels, and how it has affected your eating habits, you will be changed by God and for Him. Don’t eat just because your bored, or mindlessly while you’re watching t.v. Weight gain occurs when we are no longer paying attention to our God given body and what it’s telling us, and eat rather, out of habit. Practice being mindful with the hunger scale. This will carry over to all aspects of being healthy and whole.
The next section talked about using the Moving Forward Journal. Record your food and drink. Complete the hunger scale. Write out the weekly memory verse because it will help to renew your mind. Be sure to spend time in prayer and quiet time. When we are quiet before God we can hear Him speak. Often times we don’t hear Him because we don’t quiet our minds. The Wellness Revelation is a springboard to a holistic life: mind, body and spirit! We obey so we can become disciplined, and God gives us the strength for this. I loved the detail Alisa Keeton, the author, went into when it came to how to do a quiet time, breathing deeply, allowing the words of the Word to read you. Let it come alive and live it out. Meditate on the Word and allow it to soak into your soul. Eat the Word – read slowly and digest so that it saturates your mind. Think – ask questions and dig deeper, journal, think on it throughout your day. Pray – allow the Holy Spirit to translate so that you understand it fully. Ask for further insight. Listen and strengthen your connection with Him. Live – give Him opportunities to use the Scripture sometime throughout your day. Then, it went into logging your food (as long as this is not a bondage thing for you). This kind of log can be helpful for plateaus or points where you are feeling stuck. And, lastly the drink log. I found this one very helpful because I know I struggle to drink enough.
And, the last section talks about slowing down to truly seek God and ask Him to be all that we need. Acknowledging His blessings. Pray before eating, be grateful for the fuel. Approach it like breathing. Be mindful. Take all things to the Lord in prayer before acting….and this includes eating. Prayer takes place in the heart, the words don’t matter. It’s the attitude of the heart that does.
The next section was RENEW. Once again, the Lord did some work on me! #5 asked Why do you think people exchanged the glory of God for images of people or animals (referring to Romans 1:21-25). How have you used food or other substances to fill a need? I truly believe that it’s the Israelites wrong thinking or skewed mindset (thoughts and questions put there by satan to confuse or cause a lack of belief in God). Mindset has been my biggest struggle in my journey. And, I’m coming to realize that satan is what really keeps me stuck. I’ve used food to fill a false need for comfort when stressed out, sad, or overwhelmed. Satan tries to make me believe that food is where I feel comfort, when it’s a lie! Only Jesus truly satisfies. Then, #6 asked What Galatians 4:8 says about slavery and idolatry? It says we were slaves BEFORE knowing God. But, because we know Him, we should no longer remain as slaves. He has set us FREE! Do I believe I am free? That’s where the struggle lies….in the mind and in our beliefs. If I’m free, why do I live as though I’m not when it comes to food? Hmm…..tough questions!! Then, #7, referring to Philippians 3:18-21 with a focus on vs. 19 asked, What happens when we set our minds on earthly things? We are destined for destruction, which is exactly what satan wants. We continue to live in shame and guilt, never feeling like we can overcome. We don’t believe we have already overcome with Jesus! Anyone else? Or is this just my struggle? Then, #8, referring to Proverbs 23:20-21, What does this say about gluttony? How is it that poverty can result from gluttony? Gluttons become poor and lazy because it’s a trap. It takes from us physically, mentally, and spiritually. It causes us to disbelieve in ourselves and in God. It steals self-confidence. It steals freedom, and it keeps us from trusting and relying on God. Then, #9 asked us to describe the poverty in our own lives. I said: I don’t feel respected. I don’t feel valued by people. I feel looked down upon or judged. I get “stuck” in my lack of belief in God’s freedom and in my own ability. That’s me being very vulnerable! Then, #10 asks, How might your relational poverty be similar to the experience of people who live in developing countries? I said the feeling of not being wanted or cared for. The loneliness. The lack of belief in God and self. More vulnerability!
Lastly, was the RELATE section. Here I just want to focus on #1. What do I fear most? What do I love most? and Finish the “If only ___________________________, then I would be complete” statement. For fear, I put not being accepted for who I really am. Not continuing in the hard places and falling back into bondage (ex. working out, eating healthy, renewing my mind, pursuing Jesus and what He has planned for me.) Not becoming all God desires for me. And, then of course fear that any of my family members don’t know or aren’t growing in Jesus. For love, I put time with Jesus, God’s Word, Feeling in control (which I noted is an idol) and Feeling accomplished (also an idol). Yikes! And, to close here are my If only statements:
If only I reached my health goals, I’d be respected, and people would love me more, accept me more, and want to listen to me.
If only I pursued my dreams, I would be successful.
Then I asked myself, Is my idol me? money? success? And, is it wrong to desire respect? Jut some things to think about.
This week we will begin Chapter 3. I typically don’t fast during week 2. I typically wait until week 4. If you would like to fast, and you’d like an easy way to remove some of those foods that might be negatively affecting you and your body, reach out to me and I’ll share what’s been working for me!
See you next week when we will dive into week 3! What did you take away from week 2? I’d love to hear!