If You're Drifting Aimlessly, It's Time to Step Onto God's Lifeboat

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Do you feel stuck on your healthy living journey? Maybe you're just getting started or you have lost weight and have gotten to a place where you just feel stuck, and you want to give up.

Maybe it seems impossible for you to go forward, and you just want to find out what is holding you back.

In 2020, I wrote my sixth book, Sweet Surrender: Breaking Strongholds. That resulted in me also putting together a course called Breaking Strongholds, which is available in Overcomers Academy. Now it's 2022, and I want to share some of that information with you. It will still be helpful for you to read my book that includes action steps and take the course by joining Overcomers. The course goes even deeper.

What Needs to Change?

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The devil has us bound up in strongholds and that's why you don't think you can go forward on your healthy living journey. You know what you want to do but you just can't get over something that is in your way, and yet you really aren't sure what that is.

On the surface, you know you need to lose weight and move more, and you want to do that. You are even aware that you have some bad habits, but you can't seem to start on the process to change them.

You feel like your relationship with God is good. Still, you can't figure out why you can't do what you want to do, which is lose weight so you can look and feel better. I get it. I was there for way too many years.

Icebergs and Me

One day I was jogging in the water at my favorite community indoor pool. From out of the blue, God said to me, "Most people are like icebergs. They see only what is on the surface of their lives. They are afraid to look at everything below the surface that they think is keeping them afloat."

I did a little research when I got home and found out that only one-tenth of an iceberg shows above the water. That means nine-tenths is hidden below the surface. It can be hidden 600 to 700 feet below the water level. When melted, it can fill 462 million Olympic-sized swimming pools.

That's a whole lot of junk below the surface that ship captains can't see. When they hit it, they sink like the Titanic. That hidden part of the iceberg is the deadly part. God said it relates to people so let's apply this to ourselves. If we are an iceberg, only 10% of us is visible to ourselves and any others, even casual acquaintances or people we meet on the street. That means the deadly 90 percent of us is hidden. This is the part we and others can't see.

Parts of the Iceberg

As an iceberg, we might be able to peer down in front of us and see some of what is below the surface that others who are behind us can't see, and we don't want them to see. It's covered by our shadow. We keep it a secret. It's the part we keep to ourselves and don't let anyone else see. For me, this used to be my secret stash of candy I kept in my desk drawer and under the bed and in my closet and under the car seat. I'm glad those days are behind me.

The folks behind us, like our family and close friends, can see what we can't see. They see the part just below the surface. That's our blind spot. The blind spot might be like the note someone secretly slaps on our back that says "Kick Me." It's also the things that you don't even acknowledge or recognize about yourself.

It's how others perceive you. This can be good or bad. Having people who will be honest with us and tell us what are in our blind spots that we can't see about ourselves are gifts from God. However, we have to be willing to hear their honesty.

Danger Ahead

Taking all of this into consideration, there is still 70% that is so deep, it is hidden that no other person can see it. This is the dangerous part of you. This is the part of you that keeps you being an iceberg. The tons of ice below the surface are what support the visible part of the iceberg.

When an iceberg dissolves, it dies. It may dissolve slowly when it comes in contact with warmer water that laps over on the sides. Or it may break apart quickly when it crashes into a rock or landmass. Eventually, though, an iceberg will die, unless it stays in cold temperatures forever.

If we liken ourselves to the iceberg, we have to begin addressing the roots of what has been keeping us afloat as what we are right now. This is scary for a number of reasons. We think we've got everything in place to live a somewhat normal life. Every part of the iceberg has been developed to keep us afloat.

God to the Rescue

Icebergs are dangerous, so dangerous we don't even want to know what is keeping us afloat. We must address that and step over onto God's lifeboat that can help us get where we want to go instead of aimlessly floating along, dragging tons of stuff we don't need with us.

This is how I felt when I was super, morbidly obese. I knew I had tons of mental and emotional baggage I was dragging around with me, but I didn't know how to get rid of it. I know now this was not just mental and emotional; it was also spiritual.

The hidden part of me contained lies I had begun to believe when I was a child. They started out as small things, half-truths maybe, but as I fed them with other misperceptions, they began to grow into strongholds, which really are just lies that keep us from fully believing the truths of God.

Finding Truth

Jesus was pretty clear when He said, "All who love Me will do what I say. My Father will love them, and we will come and make our home with each of them. Anyone who doesn't love Me will not obey Me. And remember, My words are not My own. What I am telling you is from the Father who sent Me," (John 14:23-24, NLT).

What Jesus saying here is what Grandma used to say to me, and probably what your mom or Grandma said a time or two. "Actions speak louder than words." In other words, we are saying one thing and doing another. We have internalized lies that have grown into strongholds. These keep us from some of God's greatest treasures—His truth.

It's always God's revealed truth that breaks the stronghold and sets us free. When we experience His truth in any area, we will be set free in that area.

I love John 8:31-32 (MSG). "Then Jesus turned to the Jews who had claimed to believe in him. 'If you stick with this, living out what I tell you, you are my disciples for sure. Then you will experience for yourselves the truth, and the truth will free you.'"

Teresa Shields Parker is the author of six books and two study guides, including her No. 1 bestseller, Sweet Grace: How I Lost 250 Pounds. Her sixth book, Sweet Surrender: Breaking Strongholds, is live on Amazon. She blogs at teresashieldsparker.com. She is also a Christian weight-loss coach (check out her coaching group at Overcomers Academy) and speaker. Don't miss her podcast, Sweet Grace for Your Journey, available on CPN.

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