Zero for Six Update

In case you didn’t know, Zero for Six is about doing zero of something(s) for six months. I’ve been experimenting with four areas in this adventure: spending, diet, words, and TV.

As usual, the TV isn’t really a thing. In weeks and weeks, the only thing I’ve watched, with and at her request, was Emma with my daughter. This the Romola Garai version and in two sittings. That’s it. I’m not counting watching excellent preachers and motivational/inspirational speakers such as Jennifer L. Scott, Creflo Dollar, Benjamin Hardy, and Terri Savelle. But even these, helpful and positive as they are, can become excessive escapism. How to know: Do I go and do what they’ve inspired me to do, or do I just go on to the next video?

What to do, what to do? Read, don’t watch! Read books by these people (Madame Chic books by Jennifer L. Scott should not be missed!). Write, don’t watch! Write your morning pages, your artist’s pages, your scribbles. Until those thoughts going through your brain–up, down, and all around and all the time–are put down on paper, you’ll struggle to sort them and make sense of them. And then speak–the solution, not the problem.

Words. I’m learning that less is more. Less problem speaking, opinon spewing, and “news” spreading makes for more victory. This is a battle I refuse to lose, and I’m willing to crucify pride in the pursuit of positive, life-filled, scripturally correct speaking. I’ve given my family not only permission, but a request to call me on it, when less than helpful words come out of my mouth. So, I’m not at zero negativity, but that’s the unchanging goal.

I’ve found that what I speak about diet, or as I’ve put it in past posts, not eating fatigue-inducing foods, is helpful. I’m not only speaking that it’s easy as pie to do intermittent fasting, but that I don’t really even like sugar. At all. I’m finding that speaking that I’m simply no longer interested in less-than-healthy and delicious foods makes that so. In talking about how high the cost and how low the benefit of eating out so often turns out to be, I am cooking with greater care and more satisfying outcomes.

A most satisfying outcome of eating at home is the money savings. I do consider eating out, in many cases, to be unnecessary spending. I’m making progress here. I’ve come to the place where I pay attention to my instincts, and where my stomach doesn’t rule me.

If I have a bit of doubt, I get out! While traveling in South Dakota, (80 mph speed limits on Interstate!!!) for instance, my daughter and I stopped at a steakhouse. We went inside and the decor didn’t wow me. Way too gray and minimalist, and an attempt at authenticity via a sawdust-covered floor that didn’t impress. We gave our names to a snarky hostess and I went to the rest room. In there two women were carrying on about their husbands, and it was evident they didn’t know about positive words. They were well versed in the various and creative ways to denigate their husbands with the F word, but past that their vocabularies were limited. And so their lives.

“Let’s get out of here,” I said to Hannah. We left town, ended up at a marvelous destination in the middle of the South Dakota prairie, where we had the best night’s sleep in two weeks–The Dakota Prairie Hunting Lodge. I’d made an excellent soup the day before and it came out of the ice chest and into the microwave. We then dined on the deck where we watched the sun set, listened to innumerable critters sing their evening songs, and enjoyed the breeze along with our delicious and satisfying meal.

The next day, after leaving Mount Rushmore (soooooooooooo marvelous) we had peanut butter and honey sandwiches in the car rather than stop and spend. We made it to Fort Collins, where John met us at the car rental place. I was so ready to go on home, and to not spend any more money, but when John said, “Are you hungry,” Hannah answered with a vigorous nod and “Yes!” Off we went for a delicous and delightful meal at 3 Margaritas. Was that unnecessary spending? Not at all.

What’s More Important than Scripture? and Does “All Things” Include Pounds?

I have before me an excellent article by a wise man, and it will help some folks very much, no doubt.  But for me, not so much.  It’s one of those 7 steps, 15 ways, change your life in 30 days kind of things.  And it’s more than scripture-based.  It is scriptures –  a list of marvelous and beautiful scriptures for “Weight Loss and Health”.

And yet.   I know and have often spoken these scriptures, and they have helped me time and again.  But I know that this time the Holy Spirit is saying, in effect, “Forget the formula, and remember Jesus.  He has a lot more on His mind, a lot better for you, than the plus or minus of pounds.”

“What might happen,” I muse, “If I really did seek Him first?”  Seek ye first the kingdom of God and His righteousness and all these things shall be added unto you.  ALL these things?  Wouldn’t that include weight loss?  Exercise?  Health, vitality, energy, and strength?

What if I found, through communion with the One Who Knows, that there are higher things than the high number on my bathroom scales?  Who knew?

And yet, it is important to me.  I am programmed to focus on the belly fat, the lack of fitness, the dearth of plans carried through.  The SHOULDS undone.

It just so happens, and not because of weight, that last I began a fast.  And on Day Three I bought a new dress (I love Dillard’s in Cheyenne, Wyoming) for an event.  It looked great, fit perfectly.  One that day I ate a seared tuna salad, wanting to break my fast sensibly (this after having achieved the spiritual breakthrough, the answer I was seeking).

The next day, not hungry, but also not wanting to arrive at the gala starving and shaking, I ate an egg and toast and a salad.  That’s it, except for lots of mineral water and lemon water and plain filtered water.

That evening, as I tried on my beautiful new dress, I looked as though I’d been poured into it.  I wanted to rant:  “How could I gain all that weight back?; What is wrong with me?  I shouldn’t have eaten at all.  Maybe I’ll just fast for the rest of my life!”

But I remembered my wise husband’s words from years ago, in response to such a lament, or something equally fruitless and unpleasant.  “Why don’t you just forget about it.?”

And this morning I thought, “Why don’t you just forget about it, and remember Jesus?”

Can I do that?  Can I stop with the fruitless and futile and go with the fun and fulfilling?

When He said that with Him all things are possible, did He really mean ALL things?

I think He did and I think I can (Philippians 4:13).  I think when I stop focusing on the fat, I will be free to . . . to who knows what?  What might open up when I close that door?  All things?  All sorts of things?

I might even be convinced John is telling the truth when he says I’m “hot” and that “real women have bellies.”

 

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Oh, and by the way, I just happened to buy a second dress, which fit just fine, and was the PERFECT dress for the event.  So, all is well and swell, and the next time I have a shindig to attend in my lovely electric blue dress, I’ll just fast and not break my fast until the actual event, and it will be a science experiment of sorts to see if a perfectly fitting dress can get too tight while being worn.:  We know we can gain five pounds in two days of eating almost nothing, but can we gain five pounds during dinner?