Two years ago I started a low sodium diet because of developing heart problems. At first it was a challenge. I loved looking up new recipes and figuring out ways to pare down the salt in the things I already liked to make. I faithfully logged all the food I ate and lost quite a bit of weight. Then I hit a plateau and stopped losing weight. The diet lost its appeal and everyday became the “same old thing”. While I still kind of stuck with it – I knew I had to because of my heart problems – I’d lost the joy, excitement and motivation for the process.
Things started slipping as I found myself going back to some of the old patterns of eating. It became harder to keep focused on my goal of making healthy lifestyle changes. Thankfully I was able to maintain most of the weight loss through this past year, but I knew that things couldn’t stay the same or I would eventually give up all together. And the diet failure was just one area where I felt the dreariness of this life journey. Spiritually I needed a new perspective.
Through my study of the Israelites on their wilderness journey, I saw the same thing happening over and over again with them. God performed a miracle and their excitement levels for their journey peaked. They eagerly followed Moses, until their water skins dried out or the food became scarce or they faced some fierce enemy. It became harder to endure the sameness of their surroundings. They lost sight of what they did have that made the journey worthwhile and they whined about what they used to have – though they forgot the heavy price they paid for those former things. It was more than just a physical battle for survival in the wilderness; it had become a spiritual battle as well.
Every morning God gave them manna to fill their bellies, but also to draw their focus back to him. Yet all they could see was the same old, same old, boring manna. They lost the sense of God’s care for them. Their clothes didn’t wear out despite the wilderness wear and tear, yet they failed to feel God’s love surrounding them. When they met their enemies in battle, they fought and won, but they lost the fight against their own wills. They had lost their perspective of the wilderness journey – it wasn’t meant to kill or punish them. It was meant to strengthen them and make them a mighty nation.
As 2015 dawned, I needed a new perspective. One of the goals I set for myself was to keep a daily prayer journal to help keep me more focused on the God of the journey rather than the journey itself. It has been an amazing month as I have felt his presence close to me again. I’ve seen his provision and his hand of protection. God never stopped doing those things throughout the last year, but like the Israelites, I had lost my perspective. I only saw the stymied weight loss and heart issues. I began to be overwhelmed by the other problems around me, rather than remembering the Lord was always with me.
Tromp, tromp, tromp. The life journey through the wilderness of health and other issues continues, but I’m not the same. It’s a matter of perspective, of seeing the wilderness through new lenses – God’s, not mine that gives joy in the journey.
If you’ve grown weary on your life journey, pray this prayer with me: “Father God, change my perspective. Help me to see you again. Amen.”
Then stop by and share your journey with me! I'd love to hear from you.