Full to the Rim
By Lee Merrill, She Speaks! Graduate

“…until we all reach unity in the faith and in the knowledge of the Son of God and become mature, attaining to the whole measure of the fullness of Christ.” Ephesians 4:13 (NIV)

I am what you might call a perpetual dieter. My husband says I should get an honorary degree in fad diets because I own most of the diet books and magazine articles that have ever been written on the subject!

In my heart, I know that all I have to do it eat less junk, move my body more, and the weight will come off. But, the dreamer in me hopes that one of these miracle diets will actually work and cause me to "lose 48 pounds by Labor Day."

Today, the Lord gave me a brand-new “diet.” As I was reading in Ephesians, I came across chapter 4, verse 13, which deals with the body of Christ being united in faith so we can grow to be fully mature and overflowing with the character of God.

I completely understand the context of this scripture, but the Lord made one phrase stand out to me in a little bit different light: "attaining to the whole measure of the fullness of Christ." (V.13b NIV)

Now, when this professional dieter sees the word "full" I only think of one thing: full of chocolate pie, cheese enchiladas, sweet tea, or double cheeseburgers.

This morning, when that phrase lit up with holy neon lights, I felt the Holy Spirit whisper to my hungry soul, Child, if you will work on being full of Me, I'll take care of the rest.

Do I think the Lord will make my weight fall off and my muscles firm up overnight as a reward for spending extra time in His word? Uh...I wish, but no!

I think the Lord is trying to tell me that I spend way too much time worrying about changing myself when what I really need to be concerned about is letting Him change my heart.

With a changed heart, I will be focused on the comfort He provides rather than the french fry “comfort” I am so used to wolfing down.

With a changed heart, I will seek His approval rather than the fleeting approval of people, which usually throws me into a pit of despair. With a changed heart, I will develop the discipline I need to move my body more and move my jaws less, so my body can keep up with my spirit.

Dear Lord, Change my heart. Fill me up to overflowing with Your spiritual sustenance so that my spirit will be full, not my stomach. I know that if I’m full of You, there will be no room for the sins of gluttony and emotional eating. You are my portion, and I want no more than that. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.

Related Resources:
Do You Know Him?

Balance that Works When Life Doesn’t: Simple Steps for a Woman’s Physical and Spiritual Health by Susie Larson

She Speaks conference

Application Steps:
When your stomach starts to rumble, use it as a reminder to pray for a hunger and thirst for God and His Word.

Use the money you would spend on purchasing one more fad diet book to sponsor a hungry child through Compassion International.

Reflections:
What activities can you participate in today that will push you toward the “whole measure of the fullness of Christ”?

Which sister-in-Christ could you partner with on a mutual journey to seek “more of Him and less of me”?

Power Verses:
Psalm 42:1-2, “As the deer pants for streams of water, so my soul pants for you, O God. My soul thirsts for God, for the living God. When can I go and meet with God?” (NIV)

Psalm 34:8, “Taste and see that the Lord is good; blessed is the [woman] who takes refuge in him.” (NIV)


14 Comments:

Blogger Kimberly said...

Thanks for the inspiration! I loved this entry!

Blogger Michelle said...

Hey there Lee! It is so great to see you posting here. And I relate to this post way too much!
Hope you have an amazing day!!!
Blessings,
Michelle

Anonymous Katie said...

Thank you so much - you have no idea how much this meant to me. This is exactly what I needed to read today!

Blogger sara said...

WOW! This is true in so many ways!

Blogger Joan Davis said...

Lee! So happy to see your devotional here. Did you write this with me in mind? I love the imagery of being full of Christ so I don't hunger for anything else. Thanks for sharing your insight!

Anonymous Wendy said...

Fabulous devotional. I've been there many times. Have you ever heard of The Lord's Table at www.settingcaptivesfree.com? Your words remind me very much of their training.

Anonymous Anonymous said...

PERHAPS SAYING NO TO THE FLESHLY DESIRES IS ACTUALLY SAYING YES TO THE HOLY SPIRIT. I WOULD MUCH RATHER BE FULL OF THE SPIRIT THAN CHOCOLATE PIE, BUT DO MY ACTIONS SHOW IT? OUCH. MAN DOES NOT LIVE BY BREAD ALONE... ;AND "THE WORD" IS OUR MEAT.

Anonymous Anonymous said...

emotional eating is a sin?

Blogger Linda said...

Lee,
Awesome! Great Biblical support for positive personal change! Am praying for your continued seeking and success.
Love, Linda

Blogger Linda said...

Lee,
Awesome! Great Biblical support for positive personal change! Am praying for your continued seeking and success.
Love, Linda

Blogger Leebird said...

Thanks for the great comments about my first devotional!

Wendy, I have never heard of www.settingcaptivesfree.com, but I'm headed there right now!

And anonymous....do I believe emotional eating is a sin? For me, YES. When I seek comfort in food rather than the Lord, food has become an idol in my heart.

Anonymous Jennifer (Blessed daily by P31!) said...

Dear Lee,
I was very touched by your devotional today. And I'm right there with you! I've found some help in becoming empty of self and more full of Jesus, the Bread of Life, at the website "Setting Captives Free." They have an online program called "The Lord's Table" that people can sign up for and do for free. It gives inspirational scriptures and devotionals from people who God has freed from the sin of overeating and eating to fill up the empty feelings in our hearts that only He can truly fill.
God bless you!
Jennifer

Anonymous Anonymous said...

lee this was a very good devotion. God does care about our thoughts and ways. Keep up your writing.

Blogger Leila White said...

It is refreshing to read daily devotionals that come from the heart of real women. Real women... are women who speak truth with free course for the purpose of edification. I would just like to encourage you all to continue to keep your eyes and ears open to what thus says the Lord and continue to be obediate to his soft but powerful voice.

May God bless you all beyond your wildest imaginations.
Love,
Leila White

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