How many of you are spenders? Some of us have a natural bent to do that, within reason of course, while others are savers. How many of you have spent money to fill a void in your life? I know I have. Spending money on temporal things will not fill the void in your heart. In fact, it only makes it ache more. How many of us eat more than is healthy for us? I’m sure at some point we all have and that is not an issue in and of itself. How many of you have eaten to fill a void in your life? That is quite different. I know that I have used material things, money and food to attempt to fill a void only Jesus can fill. Perhaps by telling you where I’ve been, you can see where you are and correct your trajectory. Now to tell you my story.
I was a good saver until I got to college. I did what all college students do, they spend a bit more than they should but I never got myself in any financial trouble. A little more than a year after I was out of college I moved to Tennessee. I had aspirations of becoming a neonatal nurse practitioner and I wanted away from Oklahoma. I spent the majority of 20’s living and working in Tennessee. Tennessee was good to me but I was not good to myself. I dated a man I had no business with ended up with a broken heart. After that relationship ended, the lavish spending and poor financial decisions started, so did the eating. I was an RN so I made excellent money but I did not put it to good use. As for the eating, I ate a lot. I remember sitting on the couch sometime after that relationship ended and eating an entire mind you, an entire bag of KitKats in one setting. I never exercised and I kept eating. I spent my way to over $20,000 in credit card debt. I ate my way to over 220 lbs. When I hurt I did two things, I spent and I ate. I would not recognize this pattern in my life for another 12 years. Yes, 12 years! I realized this pattern the other night, at the age of 42. It was like a light switch was turned on in a dark room in my heart. I know Jesus turned on that light because I was ready to see. It’s amazing what we don’t want to face because when we do face it, we have to actually deal with the root issues of our heart. The root issues of my heart being hurt, perceived abandonment, a feeling of loneliness, and a feeling of being unaccepted. I did not want to deal with this for a long time. But God!
This heart healing for me has been a long process. There is so much Jesus had to show me about my personality and my past. I had taken on things as a teenager I was never meant to carry. I had chosen unhealthy men as a result and became unhealthy myself in many ways. Instead of taking my hurt to him, I took it to money, material things and food. In some ways, I took to those I dated and eventually to the unhealthy man I married. Satan had be right where he wanted me. Had I chosen to stay on this path, the final blow would most likely have come financially or health wise. I don’t want to imagine that. I will say it again, but God! God had a way out, He always does if you choose to make a different choice. I want to encourage anyone reading thig blog today to give your hurt to the only One who is capable of healing you, his name is Jesus Christ. I am here to tell you marriage, men, food, money and material things will not satisfy you nor will they heal your heart! They will eventually leave you empty, in debt, broke, unhealthy and wanting – you may even end up right back where you started – a vicious cycle! I will speak specifically to marriage and say marriage can be a good thing. However, it does not solve deep hurt issues of the heart you have not dealt with prior to marriage. In that case, marriage only serves to cover up and distract you from those issues for a while until you cut and bleed on the one you love. All of the things I have mentioned are distractions used to hide from our hurts.
Stop hiding! Come out into the light! I know it may be uncomfortable or painful but Jesus can handle your hurt and he can handle your pain! He can heal you and make you a whole person again. You won’t be wanting for things that will just make your soul and body thirsty again. Come to Jesus! He is waiting! He healed me and is filling up the hurt places of my heart with love. He can heal you too! He can fill you with love for yourself and others! Tell me, what do you have to lose?
His love has already won for you and me! Love, Elizabeth **For more of my story see my book The Road Less Traveled: A Story of Love, Pain, Hope and Everything In-Between, available on Amazon.com, Barnes and Noble, iTunes and Audible.com