Leaving "The Land of Me"
A warm welcome to those of you stopping by my blog today after reading the on-line devotional from
Proverbs 31 Ministries.

I hope you will join us in our conversation on a healthy lifestyle.
Our latest posts have been discussing the importance of discipline and perseverance as we strive to keep our physical and spiritual bodies healthy in order to complete the work ahead of us for God's glory.
I'm using excerpts form Eugene Peterson's book
"A Long Obedience in the Same Direction-Discipleship in an Instant Society"

The pain and struggle of "returning" to a healthy lifestyle after a self-imposed exile in "The Land of Me" is just that; a painful struggle! My muscles continue to ache and joints creek as I persevere to a return to a healthy lifestyle.
I keep my latest motto ever before me:
"It's not about the hips; it's about the heart!"

One goal is to sear the memory of this painful, muscle burning reconditioning into my brain so that I will never forget:
"Remaining in a healthy lifestyle is much less painful
than returning to a healthy lifestyle."
This is true both physically and spiritually.

When the hard work of life (physically and spiritually) enters our lives it is tempting to retreat back into "the Land of Me" in order to comfort and soothe ourselves instead of going to God; the great comforter.

Psalm 121
1 I lift up my eyes to the hills-- where does my help come from?
2 My help comes from the Lord, the Maker of heaven and earth.
3 He will not let your foot slip-- he who watches over you will not slumber;
4 indeed, he who watches over Israel will neither slumber nor sleep.
5 The Lord watches over you-- the Lord is your shade at your right hand;
6 the sun will not harm you by day, nor the moon by night.
7 The Lord will keep you from all harm-- he will watch over your life;
8 the Lord will watch over your coming and going both now and forevermore.

Study and meditate on this beautiful reminder that God is always with us. He will never let us down and will always be there to help us through the painful struggles.

Peterson urges "Do you think the way to tell the story of the Christian journey is to describe its trials and tribulations? It is not. It is to describe God who preserves and accompanies and rules us."

Be encouraged sweet friends, we are NOT alone as we persevere with discipline.
Let's change our perspective and focus as we
choose to keep our eyes on Jesus who began and finished the race we're in.

Pleae share your insights....


Blogger Tanya said...

Hi, I'm new to your blog. Loved today's message. And also Psalm 121. Thanks for the encouragment. It is definitly easier to remain than to return to health- spiritual and physical. We can all use that reminder, though, can't we???

Blogger Joyful said...

Hi Zoe,
I really enjoyed your devotional this morning. It's so easy to get caught up on appearance, when God looks at the heart.

I read not that long ago that ediets.com surveyed thousands of women from all across the U.S. asking them if they'd rather have a higher I.Q. or be prettier/slimmer etc... Over half said they'd rather be lighter than brighter. This just confirms we live in a visually focused culture.

God's eyes go deeper. He sees past all the polish, cream , spray, hair-colour, make-up etc... that definitely can make us feel better about ourselves (and I'm not advocating ignoring our appearance, but putting it in perspective) and He's looking for the surrendered heart. When we look in the mirror, it's His likeness that should be our reflection.

True beauty begins on the inside and works it's way out.

Thank you also for your great words in this post too! Love all the reminders in Psalm 121. Verse 8 is the verse the Lord gave me March 18th early in the morning that encouraged me to register for "She Speaks" when I was so afraid to sign up because of my fear of flying: "the Lord will watch over your coming and going both now and forevermore". Claiming that promise!

Travelling from "The Land of Me", to "The Land of Victory"!

My eyes are fixed on Him,

Blogger jillian4 said...

you know that God brings you to things for a reason. I believe that I didn't just happen to read the devo in my inbox this morning, and I didn't just happen to go to your blog. I needed this. I am a weak individual. I depend on my husband and his approval and pleasing him too much. When he is upset with me I feel that the world is going to end. I have been realizing that I need to get my life back on track with God and make Him my dependent. I just struggle so much with wanting love and wanting things to be better right now. But I need a makeover, to improve both spiritually and physically with my lifestyle. Thank you for your encouragement, it brings me to tears.

Blogger Jerralea said...

Loved the devotional today, especially this quote: Peterson urges "Do you think the way to tell the story of the Christian journey is to describe its trials and tribulations? It is not. It is to describe God who preserves and accompanies and rules us."

In thinking about this I realize that instead of me saying, "Let me tell you about how I endured 10 years of infertility," I should say something like, "God is so awesome. He kept me close to Him during my years of infertility and comforted my heart, taught me to delight in Him and to keep going to the altar and asking for prayer for children. Then when the time was right, He granted my request and gave us not one, but over the years 3 healthy beautiful daughters. Isn't God good! He went over and above what we asked for!"

After all, it's all about Him!

Blogger Tammy said...

Loved your devotional this morning. Stopped by here at your blog and was encouraged...I am trying to get healthier both physically and spirtually and finding discipline tough at times...and no one to hold me accountable some days...but I am reminded I am accountable to God.
Blessings and thanks for blessing my day.

Blogger the new me said...

Amen to changing our perspective as we choose to keep our eyes on Jesus...and this is continuously through out the day some days more than others!
I am learning what that means daily to keep my eyes on Jesus...and it sometimes means taking bathroom breaks at work and thanking God alone in the stall...asking his intervention to keep my chin up and eyes fixed on him and his plan and provision.

It also means not trying to do but to be with him.

Returning to a healthy lifestyle is a brut, and I am also choosing to return to a healthier lifestyle, one day at a time. It is refreshing and encouraging to read your experiences. Sometimes I get discouraged about how could I have let myself go for so long. I have learned recently to stop that thought & recognize it is not of God, but of the enemy to defeat me. Then I am reminded that with God on my side, I must be a pretty good threat! So I pull on the armour and keep up the exercising.

I have enjoyed reading your blog and your devotionals. Thank you for being real and sharing.

Blogger JazzyTurtle said...

Thank you for your devotion today. It really touch me in more ways then one. It can be so hard to keep up when everything goes at 100mph these days. This devotion was a reminder to me that I need to stop and focus on Him.

I am an aerobics instructor so getting caught up in the physical is really easy and I repent that I have been more focused on that lately then on Jesus. Again, thank you so much for these reminders. Sometimes we need to look into our spiritual mirror instead of the other one.

Peace, Love, and God Bless.

Blogger Kara Prater said...

Thank you so much for your devo. Anytime I see your devo it excites me as I get to enjoy your unique speaking style again. I heard you 1 1/2 years ago a womens retreat in southeast Texas- a women's group from League City,Tx. You taught us about being god's princess. It still is dear to my heart as i raise 3 girls of my own. Thank you for your wisdom and love for Jesus. You are dear and so sweet.
Many blessings.

Blogger Kara Prater said...

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