Author: Lysa TerKeurst
Info: Copyright 2010 Zondervan: Grand Rapids, MI.
Where acquired: Gift from a friend.
Why: This book was one of those "everybody's reading it" offerings from a few years ago. I figured the hype was over by now, so I could safely get into the book.
Rating (on a scale of 1-4 hashtags): # # # ½
What it's about: Is the battle for health and fitness merely a numbers game, or is there something deeper going on? Lysa TerKeurst brings to light the deeply spiritual consequences for a poor relationship with food. She believes that gluttony is a direct result of using food to fill an emptiness only the Spirit of God can fill. She uses scripture and her own struggles to convince the reader to take a deeper look into both his spiritual life and nutritional choices.
"We crave what we eat." - p. 19
"Incomplete people are desperate for others to notice their diet progress, but quickly realize compliments don't ensure connection or intimacy. They are not more liked or accepted or welcomed in. And even if they are being liked based on a smaller jeans size, what an awfully shallow place to be." - p. 123
"Whether we are talking about food, wine, sex, shopping, or anything else with which we try to fill ourselves, nothing in this world can ever fill us like God's portion. Nothing else can truly satisfy." - p. 134
"Putting all of our hope in religious adherence to a human-designed diet can create a false sense of prideful self-effort, harsh treatment of the body and, in the end, usually failure." - 161
"It is good for God's people to be put in a place of longing so they feel a slight desperation. Only then can we be empty enough and open enough to discover the holiness we were made for. When we are stuffed full of other things and never allow ourselves to be in a place of longing, we don't recognize the deeper spiritual battle going on." - p. 168
"I suffered afflictions physically, emotionally, and spiritually because of my refusal to admit that food is meant to be consumed by me for my benefit. Food is not meant to consume me to my detriment." - p. 188
What I Liked:
- TerKeurst writes in a conversational style reminiscent of Beth Moore's writings.
- Quiet frankly, this book was everything Women, Food, and God should have been...especially the God part.
- The author includes discussion questions at the end of each chapter for deeper reflection or for group study.
- She uses humor to make her points. It's not "LOL" humor, but "been there, done that" humor.
- While there are elements of the book that I don't like, or agree with, TerKeurst's offering gives hope and insight into dealing with the spiritual aspect of overeating.
- There is no eating and exercise instruction; no meal plans or exercise regimens. We've got enough books, videos, DVD's, and YouTube channels for that. She is delving into the area that is most neglected in the health battle: the spirit.
- When the author announced in the introduction "I started this journey weighing 167 pounds," I almost threw the book across the room. Do you know how wondrous 167 pounds sounds to me? Do you know how fast I could run at 167 pounds? Don't you understand that 167 pounds is only 17 pounds away from my goal weight? My lands! I thought that this chick was some twisted anorexic, religious acerbic, Saint Catherine of Sienna wannabe. When she later outlined her own highly restrictive eating plan (which she does NOT say that anyone else has to follow), I thought, see there? She's off her rocker!
- TerKeurst continually mentions healthy food in a negative way as if the only way to win at health is to eat things that don't taste good. This isn't true, nor scriptural. Hebrews 5:14 says - "But strong meat belongeth to them that are of full age, even those who by reason of use have their senses exercised to discern both good and evil." In other words, just as the author states, you crave what you eat. Your tastes will change.