Filling The Holes
We have all been there. When we feel discontent and down, like something is missing. We try to fill these holes with more things, a bigger house, a nicer car, a better job, tastier food, and the list goes on. The hole seems to be filled temporarily, and then like a pot hole, collapses again at the first sign of a heavy weight or an intense storm. In the weight loss clinic I used to work in we tried so many behavior modification techniques, we tried various “self talk” phrases, we tried positive thinking. Many of my clients would do well for a time, but then the old habits would creep back in.
What was the real problem? As I worked with hundreds of people, the answer was clear. These people were still searching to fill these holes. The habit of filling the hole with food kept returning over and over because it does help, a little, but the help didn’t last long. They kept trying the same solution to fill the emptiness that was nothing but temporary. They did not realize there was only one solution to the problem that would fill the hole. The solution was God.
Using food to deal with emotional discomfort does temporarily comfort, it temporarily makes us feel better, and it temporarily satisfies. The key word here is temporarily. In order to solve this problem, we need to look deeper, we need to look into our souls. Are we letting God fill our soul with joy and peace?
Yes, we need food to survive, and we should enjoy what we are eating. But we should ask, are we enjoying the food more than our God? Has food become the way to fill the emptiness He was meant to fill? If the answer to this is yes, we should consider feeding our souls a little more this week. Let us be people who thrive by using God’s word to fill our spiritual hunger. Let us be satisfied with the Lord and His love alone!
Psalm 90:14 says, “Satisfy us in the morning with your steadfast love, that we may rejoice and be glad all our days.”
The psalmist is asking God alone to satisfy. Shouldn’t we be doing the same thing day after day? God’s love is ultimately what will fill that hole. None of the things of this world are as amazing as His unfailing and steadfast love. Food is definitely not the thing to fill it. Have you asked God to help you in your struggle with food? When you call on him, he will answer you.
Psalm 17:6 says, “I call upon you, for you will answer me, O God; light up my eyes, lest I sleep the sleep of death.”
Isn’t that AMAZING? God will answer us when we call on him.
What Can I Do to Fill these Holes?
First, remember that it is absolutely OK to include some of those not so healthy foods sometimes! Those unhealthy become problematic when they are more important than other things. To understand if you need to make a change, ask yourself these questions:
- Am I eating this food to deal with some other emotion? Some examples may include: stress, sadness, or loneliness. Remember this is OK sometimes, but we need to be aware and make sure we also have other healthy coping mechanisms.
- Is this food going to fill me up so that I am not hungry for the foods my body really needs?
- How am I going to feel after I eat this? If the answer is guilty, you should explore that. Why would this food make you feel guilty? Who told you that you shouldn’t eat it? What harm will it do?
Next time you are not hungry and you feel like you want to eat all those cookies, which will you choose? The cookies, which will be gone quickly, not satisfy, and result in an unhealthy body. Or, the God who loves you, died for you, and satisfies your soul forever?
I pray for each one of you reading this that you will choose God. Every time you chose God, you will grow in your faith, you will grow in your love for yourself, and you will release yourself from the unhealthy relationship with food.
If you thought this article was helpful, you may also like this one!
For further reading I highly recommend Made to Crave by Lysa Terkeurst as it digs into learning about how God made us to crave–HIM and not food!