Thursday, March 12, 2009

From Anger to Gratitude

My first step at Mercy was one that was vital in order for me to move forward in the transformation process. For over a decade, I had been so angry at God. I was the “best anorexic” that I could be. I restricted so well, I exercised so strenuously. I should have been thinner than 99.9 percent of the population. I continued my self-destructive process for years while perceiving little physical deterioration or significant weight loss. Doctors and professionals couldn’t understand it. I could not understand it, and I was furious. I was not even successful at self-destruction. I ate virtually nothing, ran close to a marathon a day, only to maintain a borderline-unhealthy weight. In the eating disorder Olympics, I should have won a gold medal. I should have been a superstar. I should have been the thinnest, sickest, most emaciated stick-figure in the “thinness competition.” I didn’t even qualify for state finals, however. My body battled against my efforts, and I found myself literally and figuratively running on a perpetual treadmill of performance, fear, control, and bondage. I chained myself on this treadmill, only to finally realize that I was getting nowhere fast. I was going really fast, but wasn’t getting any closer to my thinness goals. Why not? I would constantly beg God to STOP preserving my body. There was a large part of me that believed that God was at work supernaturally preserving my body, and I was furious at Him for foiling my efforts. I worked so incredibly hard to be thin, and I never got thinner.
As I have been praying through this lately, I have been reminded of the verse in Romans 9:20: “Who are you, a mere man, to criticize and contradict and answer back to God? What will the formed say to Him that formed it, ‘why have you made me thus?’ has the potter no right over the clay?” I am the clay. I am not my own creator, nor do I author my days or my breaths. I am not God, and I will never be in control. I am the clay, and God, the Potter, is still in charge of my days. Lamentations 3:21-22 says this: “But this I recall and therefore have I hope and expectation. It is because of the Lord’s mercies and loving-kindness that we are not consumed, because His tender compassions fail not.” Why was I not consumed by the eating disorder? Because of my Lord’s mercies and loving-kindness. It is not through anything that I did or did not do. I was bent on my own deterioration and destruction, but God supernaturally preserved my body. I should have starved to death years ago. I should not have survived my attempts at my life. Any medical professional would agree that there was no reason why my body remained as “healthy” as it did.
When I confronted this issue of resentment toward God for “allowing me to stay fat”, I found His profound, firm, yet loving answer. Through the staff at Mercy Ministries, He made it clear that HE was the reason why my body was reasonably healthy. He also showed me that it was pure pride and selfishness that I felt “entitled” to higher levels of thinness and achievement in my anorexia dreams. It was also evident that the spirit of death that was pouring lies into my mind. He revealed also that my mindset and spirit were close enough to death even if my body was not. I had not died physically, but I was devastatingly far from actually living. God confronted me in my pride and said, “Megan, I have supernaturally spared your body, but don’t let a spirit of arrogance or pride rise out of this awareness. It is not just for you, or even mainly for you, that I have preserved you. I have kept you alive because of the people who I have destined to touch through your life.” I wept with this awareness. I slowly released my death-grip on my quest for destruction and thinness. I repented and let go of my personal agenda. It tends to be pretty pointless to fight against the Most High God. He is the one that builds up and tears down. I recognized finally that it is truly because of His loving kindness that I was not consumed. In seeing His great faithfulness, my anger melted into the deepest gratitude that I could ever know. As I have lined my heart with His, His desires have overthrown mine, and I see the value of His preservative efforts earlier in my life. I am truly so thankful that He protected me. The fact that He preserved my weight and health is an incredible BLESSING. It shows me His hand, His power, and His love.
I do not know why He spares some and not others. I do not know why some bodies are weaker and more prone to illness. I do not know why some suicide attempts are successful and others are not. I don’t understand why the same God preserves some bodies and lets others starve to death. Truly, I know, however, that I have been entrusted with a precious, undeserved gift. If I had been given what I thought was the best, I would absolutely not be alive today. I am so glad that I was not given my constant plea, nor reaped the consequences that should have followed my destructive behaviors. I have been given against all odds my life, and now I have the precious and joyful responsibility to LIVE IT.

1 comment:

  1. Megan -- As crazy as it may sound, I greatly enjoyed this posting. For me, it gives me something new to think about as far as other things besides eating disorders. Praise the Lord for His goodness and mercy! Praise Him for His superior nature and His hand that He never removes from one of His children! He is faithful when we are not. His love reaches every part, sustaining us, directing us, loving us, and patiently reminding us that He knows what is best.