CORErecovery: Out of the Valley- My Big But Problem
“But God faced him directly: “Go in this strength that is yours. Save Israel from Midian. Haven’t I just sent you?” Gideon said to him, “Me, my master? How and with what could I ever save Israel? Look at me. My clan’s the weakest in Manasseh and I’m the runt of the litter.” Judges 6:14-15(MSG)
During my time in treatment from my eating disorder, I would often get discouraged. Although I was relatively compliant with my treatment team, I would often question their guidance…
“I know that you say this meal plan will not make me gain weight, but what if it does?”
“I know you say that skipping exercise for one day won’t affect my weight or body, but how can you be sure?”
“I know you say it is ok to tell my family ‘no’ about something, but what if they get mad at me?”
“I know you think I am ready for that food challenge, but what if I try it and can’t do it?”
“I know it is time for me to begin weight recovery, but how will I know when it is enough?”
I had a BIG “But” problem. I had so many doubts and fears about my recovery, about my treatment, about my ability to climb out of the valley of my eating disorder.
Do you have doubts like this? Do you doubt your treatment team, think you just are not strong enough; you don’t have enough support, the time to devote to recovery, the money to invest in treatment?
Do you ever pray to God for help in these recovery issues only to respond to him with a big “but”?
“I know the Bible says you will never leave me, BUT I feel so alone.”
“I know I can do all things through Christ, BUT I don’t know how.”
“I know you look at my heart and not my outer beauty, BUT I still don’t like what I see.”
Well, we are in good company! Many heroes of the Bible also had a “BUT” problem. In today’s Scripture passage, we see Gideon’s doubts about himself cause him to doubt God!!
“But God faced him directly: “Go in this strength that is yours. Save Israel from Midian. Haven’t I just sent you?” Gideon said to him, “Me, my master? How and with what could I ever save Israel? Look at me. My clan’s the weakest in Manasseh and I’m the runt of the litter.”
In the verses previous, it tells us that the Angel of God declares Gideon a “mighty warrior” and here God is saying “Go in the strength that is yours.” Notice that God has already proclaimed Gideon a strong, mighty warrior before he has done a thing! And what does Gideon do? Respond with a “BUT”-type answer. He lists all the reasons why He CAN’T instead of holding on to the one reason why He CAN…Because God said so! The same voice that brought the universe into being has just told Gideon to do something…that is all he needs to know.
The same is true for us. God has called us to “Go” out of the valley of despair of our eating disorder. He has proclaimed us free from what holds us there through the blood of His Son Jesus AND He Has equipped us by the power of His Holy Spirit. This is all we need to know!
Yes, you are right. We cannot shed our doubts on our own, BUT God can erase all doubts as we learn to trust in Him!
Breathing IN (Bible Study)
- Gideon had many doubts about God using him to defeat an enemy. Can you relate to that? Do you feel like you don’t have what it takes to defeat you’re eating disorder?
Let’s look at Gideon’s story and see if we can’t learn something about God (and ourselves) here:
Read Judges 6-7:22
- Why does Gideon feel inadequate? What does God tell him?
- Is Gideon easily convinced by God that he can defeat the Midianites? How many times does Gideon ask God for a “sign”? How many times have YOU asked God for a “sign”? Have you seen any signs that God is there? Describe them here.
- When Gideon goes to defeat the Midianites, he tries to take a big army because he thinks that is what he needs. Do you often feel like you need more support, more treatment, more…well, anything before you can defeat your eating disorder? What does God tell Gideon to do? Why? *Note: I am not saying you should get rid of your treatment/ support team (after all, Gideon DID defeat his enemy with support from others!). However, what do you think God might be saying about where we find our protection or where we place our security? How does this speak to your recovery?
- I love that what defeats the Midianites is the loud noises of the crowd! How does speaking out with authority defeat our Enemy? What are some ways that you and your support team can speak with authority against your eating disorder and Satan’s lies this week?
Breathing OUT (Prayer)
YOU are The Great and Mighty Warrior, our Defender and Protector. With the strength You have given us through your Son Jesus, we can climb out of any valley and stand against any enemy. We believe Your true and honest Word and we proclaim victory today from all that keeps us captive. Please continue to remove all our doubts as we march daily in obedience to your call for us! Amen.