Are you Thriving or just Getting by? Part 2

Are you Thriving or just Getting by? Part 2

About twelve years ago, my husband and I implemented better food choices not to just get healthy, but to thrive. We started on minerals and vitamins and gave up white flours, sugars, and potatoes.

Is Sugar good for us?

When I started Trim Healthy Mama, I gave up most grains and all sugar. I know unbelievable, right? I was fortunate; sugar addictions and withdrawals had little effect on me when I stopped eating sugar. My husband and I feel better; we have very little inflammation (because sugar and grains increase inflammation) and seldom get sick (as a biologist, I know all bacteria, viruses, and CANCER feed on sugar).

(Did you know doctors actually use sugar to find cancer in our bodies using the PET scan?)

Sugar shuts down the immune system–which inhibits you from fighting viral and bacterial infections.

Think about how sick most people get between Halloween and the New Year when we eat the most sweets and desserts.

After I got sugar out of my system, I noticed my food tasted better–I now like certain foods I had not liked before. And if I eat something sugary now, my joints and body get sore and stiff. I have even gotten sick to my stomach. My body now hates sugar.

I should mention that I am NOT talking about naturally occurring sugar in fruits and vegetables.

I believe God made us to eat for our health, not to self-medicate or to satisfy our sweet tooth.

It’s about balance

Balance is God’s way for us physically and spiritually.

I am not suggesting we never eat for enjoyment either. God gave us food to be pleasing to the eyes and taste buds. I enjoy food now more than ever, but what I eat is much better for me and tastes better, too.

Children are getting Type 2 diabetes younger and younger. Obesity is getting just as common among children as it is among adults.

Eating habits are not just eating how we were taught as children, but why we eat as well. #ThisSideofHeaven #AreyouThriving?

Depression, loneliness, fear, pain, and guilt, among other things, cause us to medicate with food and drink. A lack of nutrition causes many of our diseases. We need vitamins and minerals like magnesium, calcium, zinc, potassium, and vitamins A, B, C, D, and E to keep us healthy and our bones, muscles, nervous and digestive systems to operate as they were designed.

We find most of those vitamins and minerals in foods grown from the ground, not in processed foods at McDonald’s…

Many people may wonder why we do not see as many healings as in the Bible. I have even heard people claim that Jesus only heals us in a spiritual sense, but not physically. I don’t believe that.

But, could it be we don’t see as much healing because Jesus wants us to take responsibility for what we put in our mouth? OUCH! Sowing and reaping apply here.

I believe God can heal anything and everything. I am not suggesting He won’t heal because we eat donuts and candy. He alone knows when and how He wants to heal our bodies, but sometimes it may not be until Heaven.

Steps for taking control of our body’s health:

1. Incorporate more low-carb fruits and vegetables like berries and green leafy veggies, broccoli, cauliflower, asparagus, and brussels sprouts. Using a mixture of real butter, salt, pepper, onion powder, and garlic gives these vegetables great flavor.

2. Avoid processed foods. Eat foods that you make yourself or you know were grown from the ground.

3. Drink lots of water. Drink one-half of your body weight in ounces of water. So, if you weigh 150 pounds, then you need to drink seventy-five ounces of water a day.

4. Cut way back on sugar. Avoid candy, too. Sugar and even most artificial sugars like Splenda, Aspartame (or Nutrasweet and Equal), or Saccharin (or Sweet ‘N Low, Sweet Twin) still spike your blood sugar.

For instance, Stevia, sugar alcohols, and brands like Swerve do not raise your insulin levels while letting you enjoy sweets. There are many websites with recipes that use these healthier sweeteners.

There are also brands like Swerve, Lily’s Chocolates (, and even Duncan Hines ( that make sugar and grain-free desserts and candy.

In a lab, we grow bacteria on sugary cultures. From Halloween into the New Year we overdose on sugar and feed the bad bacteria in our body spending most of the winter sick.

5. Limit white and wheat flour, pasta, bread, and anything made with them. Keto diets really help you get your sugar and insulin levels in a healthy range.

6. Don’t use food to self-medicate. Eating to self-medicate is never good for us and either is making food an idol. God wants us to live free from sugar addictions and self-medicating.

Too many of us do not realize we make food an idol–especially sweets. Like any other idol, we must ask for forgiveness and turn away from it. Pray and ask Jesus if you turn to food for comfort more than Him.

He is the Healer of our minds, bodies, and emotions. Seek Him to find healing and freedom from food addictions.

Seek Him if you are hurting. Forgive and bless those who have caused you pain. Freedom comes only through Christ.

Please do your body a favor and give it Healthy food. It will thank you by helping you to grow old gracefully without disease and stay healthy.

1 Corinthians 10:32 (NLT) says, “You say, ‘I am allowed to do anything’—but not everything is good for you. You say, ‘I am allowed to do anything’—but not everything is beneficial.”

Are you thriving physically? Pray and ask God how to do that.

Are you thriving or just getting by?

Are you thriving or just getting by?

My German shepherd was starving to death, and we didn’t know what to do. Sophie got twelve, yes 12 cups of food a day and at a year old, she was only forty pounds. After many tests, the vet diagnosed her with a pancreatic problem, called EPI, which kept her from digesting her food. As a result, whatever she ate went through her system without nourishing or feeding her body. With the help of pancreatic enzymes, Sophie is now thriving.

Why aren’t we Thriving?

As a culture, America is starving, and so are some of her churches. Why? Because we want milk, not meat. We are not feeding on the one thing we need most, the Word. God made us to have intimacy with him through his Holy Spirit, prayer, and Scripture. Without the catalyst of God’s Word, we won’t thrive spiritually.

However, we need to digest the Word before we can absorb it and do what it says. But, if we barely open the Book how will that happen?

Hebrews 4:12 (ESV) says, “For the word of God is living and active, sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing to the division of soul and spirit…”

The Living Word

The word living means God’s words are alive, and they give life. Active is the Greek word energes which resembles the English word energy. God’s Word and words are full of life and energy. God’s words are to achieve something in our hearts and lives. More than ever, Scripture needs to become more than head knowledge. God’s Word shouldn’t just go in one ear and out the other. Once in the heart, it will be absorbed and nourish our very soul.

God’s word is sharper than a sword, able to pierce through the soul and spirit. The word pierce means to penetrate or get through. This may be one reason we may not care to read the Bible. Unless the Word penetrates our hearts, we will not grow and change.

Our soul is our mind, will, and emotions, and our spirit is what the Creator breathed into us. They are often at war with one another. Our spirit communes with God through the Holy Spirit while our soul is everything that makes us who we are.

Soul and Spirit

So, why would the Word divide the soul and spirit? God wants us to be Spirit-driven, not soul-driven. The Spirit is love, peace, truth, patient, gentle, kind, self-controlled, faithful, and joy. This is how God wants us to function.

The soul can be moody, self-centered, turbulent, depressed, thoughtless, self-driven, lacking self-control, and deceitful. Satan influences our soul, by manipulating our thoughts. If we are not in the Word of Truth, under the perfect power of the Spirit of Truth, we get off track.

God wants us to be Spirit-led and Word-led. One without the other is only half the equation. Unfortunately, many overdo one or the other. We become so Spirit-led we assume everything we think is of the Holy Spirit and will act and speak out without the guidelines of Scripture. However, being overly Word-lead can stifle or quench the Holy Spirit so we can no longer hear him because everything becomes an intellectual experience. There needs to be a balance.

What is Dull of Hearing?

In Hebrews 5:11-12, the author rebukes his readers for becoming dull of hearing. He says, “For though by this time you ought to be teachers, you need someone to teach you again the basic principles of the oracles of God. You need milk, not solid food.”

The Greek word for dull refers to “a condition of spiritual apathy and laziness that prevents spiritual development.” [1] Isn’t that how we can feel, too?

Studying Scripture takes time and effort.

God does not think less of us if we are not in his Word.

But, have you ever thought how it must sadden him to see the time we invest in things having no Heavenly value?

Do we spend too much time on our phones, iPads or binge-watching our favorite shows on Netflix? Yes. Do we need to improve? Yes. Am I preaching to myself? Yes.

The answer lies in putting those things away for a set time each day and getting out our Bibles to let the Holy Spirit guide us through the Word one verse at a time. Don’t set unrealistic goals. Reading one verse and letting God speak to you through it is better than reading one chapter or an entire book just so we can say we did it.

If you are a parent, can you imagine letting your ten or fifteen-year-old still drink from a sippy cup or a bottle for each meal? Unfortunately, that is the state of a lot of churches in our country. We need more than milk–we need solid food. We need to get back to reading, discussing, and studying God’s Word. Our spiritual health depends on it.

[1] Wiersbe, W. W. 1996, c1989. The Bible exposition commentary