As I pressed into my prayer:
Lord, show me in your word, how I should be eating and caring for myself.
The Lord answered, one day...
Do the things you did at first.
My spirit recalled this verse from Revelation, one of my favorites, I knew where His Spirit was leading.
You have forsaken the love you had at first. Consider how far you have fallen! Repent and do the things you did at first. Rev 2:4
I remember being an over-joyed new believer, newly in love with the Lord. I would sneak away--every chance I got--to read my bible and write in my journal. I remember walking across campus, from the first year design studio all the way to my dorm room, just to steal away a few moments alone with Him. Sometimes it seemed the walk to and fro was longer than the time alone, but to my lovesick heart, it was worth it.
Later, I found a beautiful tree that grew branches all the way to the ground. I called it my "Holy Spirit Tree" and hid out with the Lord under its billowy boughs. I had a hunger for His word, and wanted to be immersed in it all the time. Now, when times are dry, I remember those things I did at first. I remember how much effort I put into knowing His heart. The effort wasn't work, because it was fueled by desire. So often when the desire isn't present, simply re-doing some of those early behaviors will ignite that same passion again.
Similarly, I often think of the early days in my relationship with Devin, and remember the sweet ways we related to each other. I try to swoon over him similarly today. That heart attitude, followed by the actions of early love and infatuation often breath life into our marriage.
The practical applications of this verse are bountiful. Now the Lord was using this small passage in His word to awaken my body and spirit to full sozo healing.
Do the things you did at first.
What did He mean?
Well, it began with remembering the time I felt and looked healthiest. What was I doing? How was I eating?
I made some comparisons about how my life has changed, living in Israel, and as a wife and mother. For the most part, my lifestyle is much healthier in Israel than in America, but I realized there are a few things I've been lacking or neglecting that needed to be restored. I needed to back track slightly... in order to go forward. I noted some changes in three areas, diet, exercise, and beauty.
In terms of diet, we eat extremely healthy. We have great locally grown fresh produce and limited access to processed and fast food. However, there was one key food that was a regular part of my diet in the States that I was not eating nearly enough of in my new Israeli home.... SPINACH!
In the States, I would buy bags of baby spinach leaves and use it in all sorts of ways. Lettuce based salads are not common to the Israeli food culture. As a culture, we consume large quantities of Hummus, a variety of eggplant salads, tehina, and of course, cucumber and tomato salads, but leafy greens aren't the norm. When I would shop, I would literally forget to look for them. I respond really well to leafy greens, so upon revelation, spinach is now a staple in our fridge. My dear friend, Angela, even found a store that sells Kale when in season. We had both been looking for months. What I believe was a true leading of the Lord, I am now eating leafy greens in abundance. And I'm feeding them to my husband... and working on Aviel. Dinosaurs eat leafs, so he can, too.
Recalling my most fit season of life, I realized I had been neglecting fitness care. As a pedestrian, I haven't necessarily needed to do much intentional cardio to stay shapely, but I remembered how much I loved running before I had Aviel. As I researched adrenal fatigue, which is how I have been "self-treating" prior to discovery that my Cushing's is adenoma related, I learned that running actually puts stress on the body and causes a release of cortisol. Its not necessarily recommended for those struggling with adrenal problems, but I departed from the suggestion and went for it. My logic is that the good endorphins are worth the small amount of stress. I'm not a marathon runner... just 20 minutes at a time. And I think this was a good choice. I feel so much better when I'm running regularly. It builds my confidence to meet my goals, and it increases my energy through out the day. I really do have this sense that I am more than a conqueror. For that, it is totally worth it.
During the season of the life that the Lord drew me to remember, I also realized that I had a regular habit of caring for my feet! I made sure to take the time to paint my toe nails every week. Glancing down at my feet, I knew they had been seriously neglected. Devin and I serve in ministry in the Land, therefore we do not have the same creature comforts that we would have in the States. We live on little income, and we walk everywhere we go. We work hard and it shows my tired, worn out tootsies. Beautiful are the feet that carry good news, but beautiful feet are dirty feet. Yeshua washes feet, and He instructed me to wash mine. If I suspected that I was being overly emotional or subjective about this issue, those concerns vanished when I opened a care package from my mom filled with nail polish! The Lord truly was calling me to wash my feet, as a time to stop and be still before Him, and He confirmed it through my mother's gift.
Take That, Cushing's Disease!
The Lord has been so good to me through this strange health situation. In a time where I'm supposed to be "rapidly gaining weight," I've actually lost weight, and toned up, although my face and collar bone are still puffier than normal. Its not about numbers on a scale right now. More than anything, I am so thankful to feel great. I feel healthy, and I feel joyful. For the first time in a long while, I also feel beautiful.
His provision has been so good.
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