WHAT I ATE WEDNESDAY: Overcoming Obstacles Through Christ

Hi All!

This morning, similar to yesterday morning, I slept through my alarm and learned that I’ll be setting two or three from now on, and LOUDER ones😪😛 I wasn’t late for my 9am shift at Cora’s but was rushed, so breakfast was just a quest bar during my Bible study. I was exhausted and lethargic during my shift and something woke inside of me; I hadn’t eaten solid food besides soy coffee since 1pm the previous day. This isn’t okay and cannot continue. Midway through my shift, I went to the bathroom and prayed. I asked the Lord to guide me and lift me up knowing from the past that I can’t do a single thing without Him, but that I can do all things through Him. 


My stomach growling, Ed wanted nothing, but I asked the kitchen for an egg white omelette with spinach, mushrooms, and goat cheese. I ate that and drank some coffee and felt a bit more alive. 

My wonderful manager told me to leave a little early, noting how tired I looked, and I did. I had plans with Laura, and she made the day brighter as she always does. I drank a soy cappuccino while we perused the mall and visited my friend Kenya from Starbucks and one of my long time best friends Jake at the bargain store he works at. 

I got home at 5pm, very hungry and very tired. I wanted oatmeal, but panicked a little when I realized we were all out. My mom was out so I tried calling her a bunch of times in case she was grocery shopping; no answer. I realized that any regular person would just eat something else. But I genuinely wanted my oatmeal! I remembered that we had these packets of oatmeal that also had chia seeds and were thus slightly higher in fat, so Ed had written them off. But I thought they looked delish, and so I proceeded to make a packet of them, topped with cacao, peanut butter, sliced banana, and cherries. 


I took a much needed and uninterrupted 2 hour nap and then knew I needed some more food, so dinner was another quest bar with carrots and peanut butter. My head was telling me, “this is too processed, you should have some lean chicken.” But I was craving the quest bar. I struggled with that thought for a while and let it take over me before giving it over to God in prayer. 

It has been a weak day in many ways but a day that the Lord has used just the same to teach me that I need only ask, I need only train my eyes on Him, I need only allow His Spirit to work, period. He has revealed to me that I need to be eating me, and with His support and I pray through the love and support of those surrounding me He will lead me in His timing to full remission from this eating disorder. And His goodness is something I can always, 24/7 be expectant of and ready for. How blessed are we and how good is our God?!

I’m heading to a friend’s soon who is kindly letting me sleep over because she lives so close to my work and I start at 5am tomorrow! Have a blessed evening ladies and gents💕

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TOP TEN TUESDAY: Must-Try Starbucks Drinks

Happy Tuesday!

Now that I work at Starbucks and love it, I thought I’d do a fun one today. Here are my personal top ten, can’t-miss drinks.

Cappuccinos. If you are like me, cappuccinos are for you. Made with just espresso, a bit of steamed milk, and lots of foam, cappuccinos can be sweetened with any of our flavoured syrups as well. I have a plain soy cappuccino as my daily coffee and feel excellent on that.

Chai Tea Lattes. Hint: ask for it made with the bagged chai tea. Otherwise, the drink is made with sugar laden chai “concentrate,” whatever that means– the bagged tea gives the drink more flavour. When I’ve drank these, I’ve had them with soy and unsweetened.

Double Shot on Ice. You guessed it: a double espresso served over ice is topped with your choice of milk and sweetened lightly. Ask for caramel syrup instead of classic for a perfect flavour balance if you’re not into strong coffee.

Chocolate Smoothie. Made with a fresh banana, your choice of milk, whey protein, mocha sauce, and ice. That’s it! Try subbing sugar-free mocha syrup for the sauce for a more paleo friendly version of this drink (not that I’m recommending the aspertame in the sugar free syrups, but still).

Smores Frappuccino. I’ll never be able to try it, but it’s my favourite looking frapp. Made as a typical coffee frapp sweetened with marshmallow whipped cream inside and on top of the cup, topped with graham cracker crumbs and bursting with mocha sauce. If you’re interested in the Frappuccino, try a classic coffee frapp to see if you like it, and be adventurous from there.

Cinnamon Dolce Latte. My best friend Daniella’s favourite! Cinnamon dolce syrup is pumped with the regular smooth espresso and steamed milk of a latte, topped with whipped cream and cinnamon sugar.

Hot Chocolate. Not a coffee fan? Not a problem. I mean, you should reevaluate, but that’s ok. Starbucks hot chocolate is the most authentic chain hot chocolate you could purchase, made with real steamed milk and mocha sauce and our made-in-store whipped cream rather than water and a pouch of powder.

Iced Caramel Macchiato. These pretty drinks when served hot have the foam consistency of that right between a latte and a cappuccino. Served over ice, espresso is poured atop steamed, then icy milk and drizzled with caramel.

Flat White. For strong, delicious espresso, ristretto shots are used, and extra shots are added. Milk is a creamy texture. 

Mocha. For the chocolate coffee lover. Latte style steamed milk and espresso with mocha sauce and whipped cream. 

MOTIVATION MONDAY: Tricks of the Enemy

Hi All! Happy Monday! Whether you spent it working, with yourself, with loved ones, I pray that it was all in and through the Lord, and that you recognized his always-present love.

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1 JOHN 6-7 If we claim to have fellowship with him and yet walk in the darkness, we lie and do not live out the truth. But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus, his Son, purifies us from all sin.

Today as I heard and easily pinpointed the tricks of my eating disorder, I thought about how backwards, twisty, and pointless it is.

Here were the steps the devil took to reel me in.

  1. Overheard a conversation among co-workers about eating egg whites and never eating yolks because of their higher calorie/fat content, as well as eating high protein and getting in extra shape at the gym.
  2. “The workouts you do aren’t enough,” says the voice, “You should be doing much more and eating much less. You used to be fat– you could be thinner than you are now.”
  3. Loss of focus on training at work/immediate distance (co-worker: “are you okay? You seem tired).”

And here is the ONE step I took toward ridding these often relentless voices:

  1. PRAYED.

I prayed to my Lord and Saviour that He would reveal to me in His perfect timing where He is calling me in terms of my focus on nutrition and workouts. And Christ strengthening me I was able to focus on delivering customer service and quality in my work day without that distraction.

I recognize now that because food and exercise have been a means through which the enemy has gripped me in the past, it is an aspect of my life I must be prayerful about, which, when I am honest with my Spirit, the Lord leads me away from focus because it is such a destruction. Because of His perfection that I am so obsessed with, I KNOW that He is capable of turning that destruction completely on its head and making food and exercise nothing but a passion that can be used for His glory– but whenever distraction is present, I have to pray for the aspect to be removed. Because here’s what is funny…

My eating disorder tells me nothing but lies.

It tells me that he will lead me to eating the very healthiest– actually, it leads me to eating next to nothing and passing out.

It tells me that I will become the very fittest– actually, it leads me to having no energy for strength workouts, let alone cardio workouts, but ends up pushing so much cardio that there is such little room for muscle development.

It tells me that I will be living such a “healthy lifestyle” through it– but my “lifestyle” can be NOTHING but Christ’s. I DESIRE nothing but Christ. This world is so frigging temporary. I want Him.

 

Living the ACTUAL “healthy lifestyle” that my eating disorder lies to me about doesn’t involve the things my eating disorder tells me is so shameful, like binging, lazing around, eating tons of junk food. I don’t believe in these things at all. The ACTUAL healthy lifestyle is something that I know the LORD will provide by His Grace without my flesh putting excessive conscious energy into it.

MATTHEW 6: 25-27 “Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or drink; or about your body, what you will wear. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothes?  Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not much more valuable than they? Can any one of you by worrying add a single hour to your life?”

 

MY THOUGHTS THURSDAY: My Blurb this Sunday

Hey Y’all!

As I’ve mentioned, this Sunday I’m preaching a pre-written sermon with some spiritual discernment of my own on Luke 9:51-62 and Galatians 5:13-25.

I was asked to write a blurb for the handouts for the service as a “takeaway” from the sermon, and didn’t write for a week until 1am a few nights ago in prayer, and this is what the Spirit put on my heart.

Have you ever decided, perhaps impulsively and perhaps without relent, to do something that you knew the Lord wouldn’t love, that you knew wasn’t in line with where He was calling you? We all know this feeling. But as is promised in the book of Galatians, the Lord can perfectly dwell in each of us through His Holy Spirit. While WE are weak, HIS capacity is endless. Abiding by His Spirit that He promises He will fill us with will not gratify the desires of the world but will naturally please the ETERNAL Kingdom– and there is, quite simply, nothing more important.
I once went with a group of friends to the top of a hill after midnight to lay out and watch the stars. A beautiful breeze blowing, the perfect view of endless stars and the black-blue night sky and the earth, so real and wonderful beneath us, as if we had been invited to engage in amazing conversation. And we did– we had meaningful talks about the world and it’s temporariness, living, and God’s grace. We may be in a spot of believing that it takes a time or place or person to meet God or experience His grace, but “all of the above” are incapable of such, and in fact part of the temporary swirl of this world. HE meets us– every day, where we’re at. To think otherwise is to diminish the perfect power of His Spirit that is more vibrant than anything visible! We just have to welcome what He is wanting to accomplish in and through us, for as Major Ian Thomas says, “Godliness is not the consequence of your capacity to imitate God, but the consequence of His capacity to reproduce Himself in you; not self-righteousness, but Christ-righteousness; the righteousness which is by faith­ a faith which by renewed dependence upon God releases His divine action, to restore the marred image of the Invisible God.”

Have a blessed weekend, knowing that Jesus is with you wherever you roam and He wants to be all you are living through and for.

WHAT I ATE WEDNESDAY: Coffee, a Park, and Jesus

For I know the plans that I have for you, says the LORD.

It’s as simple as that in so many ways. Hope you’ve all had a blessed Wednesday!

Breakfast this morning after Bible study was a small bowl of oatmeal with cacao peanut butter, half a banana, and blueberries.

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I walked to the bus stop and read all the way to work, and was already feeling tired when I arrived. I had my first free drink, a venti soy cappuccino, before my shift. This morning’s shift was quick but really important! I did about an hour’s worth of online learning and then worked the drive thru for two hours and loved it. While I’m so excited to start learning drinks, I adore the customer interaction. One guy came through with flowers in his front seat for his girlfriend. I took orders while searching the till which is complete with I swear a billion buttons and so many ways to modify– overwhelming, but all stuff I’m good at. So I’m loving it.
After my shift I drank an unsweetened soy iced coffee and Laura and I spontaneously went to a park downtown that she loves. We had INCREDIBLE conversations, about life and God’s grace and generations and curiousity about our potential kids of the future and laughed and talked about only the good stuff. I adore this person and am blessed to have such an amazing friendship with her.
I got home late and realized I hadn’t eaten since 7am! I was very genuinely hungry for once! I ate a quest bar with carrots and turkey slices whilst doing online coursework.

Krystal and I spent a while then stretching, and for dinner, I just had a small piece of beef, which I haven’t eaten in months so yay!, with more carrots.

I knew this wasn’t enough and later had blueberries and another quest bar for a snack. That second quest bar gave me awful thoughts– “two quest bars in one day, too much protein, too processed” but I was craving it so clearly my body needed the protein! Today was a day of fueling up and listening to my body and I praise the Lord for that. Now for an early night because tomorrow is an early morning! Prayers and blessings❤️

TOP TEN TUESDAY: Current Happenings

Happy Tuesday! How are y’all?
I always know my day will be infinitely good and blessed when Daniella is involved. She is one of my greatest blessings and a woman I so love and admire.
Today’s top ten is a random compilation of some current happenings.

Clothes. For any Canadians, Garage has great deals right now! I got really good quality low rise denim shorts for 20 bucks each, and a high low skirt for 15.

Food. As I said yesterday, the Lord’s presence has been all I’ve been able to respond to. Ed certainly pops up, and he has today. I woke up starving and ate some oatmeal with toppings, knowing I had lunch plans with Daniella and ended up just eating coconut yogurt with fruit at the cafe. Even with this, Ed has told me not to eat for the rest of the day. But I know the Lord has me and I don’t need to think about it. As far as the POSITIVES of food, I’ve finally been getting a new coffee! It’s a lot cheaper than my regular soy cappuccino and not very exciting but the perfect caffeine boost: an unsweetened soy iced coffee.

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Bible Study. I’m really excited that I’m going to be doing some Bible study with a new friend of mine named Emily! She’s been a blessing to me and our meeting and friendship has been the Lord at work. We are going to start by working through Psalms and see where the Lord takes us! My personal study continually takes me back to Romans… oh how I love it.

Thoughts. About the peace in the present and the peace in the future, knowing God has a plan for it all.
You wanna know something funny? Since I was diagnosed with anorexia, a thought has continually plagued me: an intense fear of being pregnant one day. The scale inevitably going upward. Already thinking in my head, ok how are you going to work out and eat to make sure the only weight gained is from the baby and not a morsel of extra fat on your own body? This was a disordered fear that I used to think about every day (HA! I laugh at the devil). I feel called to have children one day and if that’s the Lord’s will pregnancy will happen one day and He will guide me. That’s it. So yeah, an example of the peace He’s brought me.

Cooking. I would really like to take a Chinese cooking class! This is one of the only cuisines I have never cooked from, and I want to learn and appreciate it all.

Reading. Almost done CS Lewis (time is of the essence people) slow poking through the third Girl with the Dragon Tattoo, ready to stock up for the cottage. My favourite place in the whole world is in a canoe in the middle of Papineau Lake at either 6am or 8:30pm with a book and God’s sky and the sun doing something magical.

Preaching. As I said, I mostly have to use the Bishop’s sermon this Sunday and it’s a good message but I have added some things as the Spirit has spoken to me. I also got to write the blurb for the church handouts and I didn’t write anything for days until last night at 1am in prayer He gave me the words.

Moving Out. I am… excited! Making lists! Ready for whatever the Lord has for me and my blessings of friends in this journey. It is going to be an experience and form of independence I feel is necessary at this stage of my life.

Starbucks. I love my job so much! I’ve had little moments in the green apron like, “ah I’m a barista, what?” It’s a dream I’ve had and felt called to for so long as I’m truly passionate about coffee shops and while few people understand it my loved ones have been supportive and shared in my excitement. I’m blessed by wonderful humans surrounding me.

Sammy. It’s Sammy’s birthday week and this selfless, beautiful, compassionate woman has changed and impacted my life just by being the light she is since the day I met her. Thank-you, Sammy, for brightening so so many lives.

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MOTIVATION MONDAY: Let Him Shine

Happy Monday!

Today I spent a significant amount of time in prayer. A lot of it lead me back to this passage:

“I have been crucified with Christ and I no longer live, but Christ lives in me.” GALATIANS 2:20

This means and has always meant that pride is existent is God alone. The only One who can ever love us rightly and truly is Jesus. The only One we’ll ever have true joy in is Jesus Christ. And taking up the cross means that by His grace he attains that joy IN us through His Holy Spirit.

Giving each moment up to the Lord, I found His beauty and grace in just about everything. While the devil has a hold of much of this world, there is not an inch of that hold that Jesus hasn’t already forever overcome. And so today, waiting for a quick iced coffee at Starbucks, a woman, after ordering, turned around and said to me, “You know you should really learn not to stand so close to people in line.” I wasn’t abnormally close to her, I promise. I was so taken aback and gave her a sincere apology but was genuinely so surprised that someone could go out of their way to say something so unnecessary! The barista heard, as the woman was quite loud, and gave me my drink for free. “You’re a glowing young lady,” she said, “You’re having a good day. Don’t let that ruin it.”

I don’t know how she knew it but it was true– I had been having a great day, solely because of God and His grace in my prayer and relationships and life. And this woman was such a light– a reminder that negativity can push on us, but is never something Jesus hasn’t already overcome in His way and His timing. We just need to be willing, and man, He’s leading and preparing me more each day.

I am blessed to be at peace and in love with a man who draws me closer to the Lord and who I know I can talk through any dispute or confusion with. And today the Lord granted me His grace in my time with him, as well as a beautiful day with Cassia.

Eating disorders are literally nothing but ploys to consume one’s heart and take it from the Lord. This isn’t possible, as the Lord loves on us when we’ve strayed just as when we’re welcoming only Him, but I know the devil’s ability to drop in and take charge, turning my day into something just about food and the lack thereof it.

Lately, it’s just been the Lord. When it’s time to eat there is some anxiety, but ultimately I feel only closer to food being a passion, something I LOVE to serve God through and more importantly feel He is calling me to as He continues to banish the disorder’s hold on me. My first barista shift on till last night was incredible and brought a lot of that passion out of me. Having customers ask about the tastes of different drinks and being able to recommend certain things… it felt like something I’m good at for a reason. To bring His joy to what is meant to be a bright spot in the day.

I felt called to blog about this and His goodness in my life today, the only “motivation” being that we are weak– He is endlessly, forever strong.