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What Happened?

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Wow, my last blog was dated November 10, 2011!! I guess time flies when you are having fun! Or the more honest answer is life got busy and my priorities changed.

Back in November of 2011, I signed up for a half ironman. I am not sure what got into me but this was NOT a well thought out commitment. My daughter was 15 and had just started high school. As most parents who have teenagers know, this is a very important time to be involved in your child's life. I jumped into something without thinking the whole commitment through. It took a few months of training (until February) for me to figure out that this was NOT a good idea. Taylor started saying things like, "Wow mom, I hardly ever see you anymore." This broke my heart. I hired an online coach to help me prepare for this race and the relationship was less than satisfactory. I am not saying that he was a bad coach but he wasn't the coach for me! I ended up training a lot by myself and it was super lonely. I realized quickly that I like doing these sorts of things because of the social interaction it provides. Riding my bike for hours on end by myself sucked!! I need buddies!!! I also had an injury (sprained ankle) that kept my progress at a minimum early on. All these things contributed to me deciding that this was not the right time to pursue my dream of taking on a half ironman. I do believe there will be a time in the future where I will attempt this goal again, God willing, but it isn't right now.

So, no-big-deal right? I decided to reevaluate and not move forward with this goal. WRONG! This messed me up mentally for months to come. I struggle with an all or nothing mentality. If I can't go all out, I might as well not try. So, I started eating badly and I stopped working out for awhile. I am not the type of person that sets goals and doesn't accomplish them. I was so disappointed with myself for giving up on my goal. I thought others would think less of me. I went through a really rough time trying to swallow the defeat. I see now that I should have just readjusted my goal to something that would fit my lifestyle and priorities (i.e. a shorter distance triathlon) but instead I gave up on things that were important to me. DUMB!

The good news is that while I went off the deep end for a bit, I realized some of my lifestyle choices have stuck! Even though I wasn't working out rigorously, I still felt that I needed to get out and go walking regularly. I would make bad food choices but more often than not it wasn't all out. It was a more moderate way of indulging. I realized that what I have learned over the many years of trying to maintain my weight stuck even when my focus took a detour. Don't get me wrong, the scale moved in the wrong direction but I was able to take control again before it got way out of hand.

This isn't a perfect journey, this is life! I am grateful for the times that I struggle because it helps me have compassion for myself and for others that are also struggling. I realize that this is a battle that is won, day after day. I pray that God gives me the strength to take care of the temple he has given me to travel through this life with. I only get one!

Let's move forward together,
Leah

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

JADOMB 9/15/2014 10:51PM

    It happens. I'm glad to see you are back on track again though and hope you will update us again with your journey. By the way, if you are liking exciting events that are not boring and very social, try Spartan Events. They are awesome.

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FINDINGMEIN2012 11/24/2013 3:27PM

    I hardly ever am on Spark People anymore, but I am so glad I happened to read this blog! You are such an inspiration....hope to see you again soon!

Lynne

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JILLYBEAN25 11/21/2013 12:46AM

    I think there are a lot of people that have an all-or-nothing mentality about a lot of things (pointing fingers in my direction especially) and it's so easy to get defeated by them. You're right, though... the important part is pulling yourself back up, dusting off, and continuing to move in a forward direction. Even if moving forward is slower than slogging through molasses in freezing weather. At least it's still forward momentum. And priorities DO change in life and you do the best you can to navigate it. I think you were quite successful.

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WOLFKITTY 11/20/2013 9:28AM

    Love it! GoOd assessment, and great idea!
Hugs,
Jocelyn

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S318830 11/19/2013 4:17PM

    Leah, outstanding observations. Sorry to hear you were so hard on yourself when you postponed your goal. But every time you go through something like this you learn more for "next time" and you don't repeat it. Posting about your struggles really helps others understand that things aren't always rosy for other people. And it's a good reminder that even in maintenance you have to stay vigilant or you slide backwards - something I'm a good example of myself.

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Iron....what? Iron...who? WOMAN!

Thursday, November 10, 2011

Hello everyone!


Wow, I haven't blogged in a long time! Where have I been? Hmmm, I guess I was busy living my life. You know, traveling around and running races with some of the best sparks around! Oh how I love my spark family. They have enriched my life in profound ways. They have also influenced that tad bit of crazy in me. You know, that part that says, "you can do anything, go ahead and try!" Yeah, that crazy part which always seems to get me in trouble. Yup! Example: I was at a monthly spark outing where we went rock climbing and after we finished, we hit up the "healthy" menu at Chili's.


Ahhmmm, you remember this fhamway (Felicia) and Cellia6191 (Marcy)???



Conversation was flowing freely between all the parties and the topic of half marathons comes up. The next thing you know, I am signed up and training for my first half marathon. Seriously! I couldn't even run a 5k and now I am signed up for this?!? 13.1 miles?! I must have lost my mind. Tad bit of crazy. But it didn't stop there! Oh no, it didn't! It has continued to get me into about 10 half marathons, 1 full marathon (and another one in the making), 3 triathlons and 2 crazy relays.



Yeah, the craziness has just reached a whole other level. On November 1, 2011, I signed up to participate in a half Ironman!!!!!!!!!!! WHOA!?!??! I can't believe that a sane person would shell out $275 dollars to swim 1.2 miles, bike 56 miles and then after all that is said and done, voluntarily run a half marathon. Sheesh, this makes me tired just thinking about it! What have I done?



I will tell you what I have done! I have determined to see just how much I can push myself. I have decided that I can do anything I put my mind to, with proper training of course. That and A LOT of prayer! I will not sit on the sidelines of life and let it pass me by. I am going to jump in and have a great ride. I am doing things I never in a million years thought I would do. Am I nervous, you bet! Do I have doubts? Yes but only for a millisecond before I realize I felt the same way about my first half marathon, marathon, triathlon and relay. But I overcame those doubts and I will overcome these doubts, too. That 200 pound prior fat girl in me wants to be lazy and dismiss these goals as simple craziness but this athlete says "NO WAY!!!" So, on that note, yours truly will be training her butt off for the next 9 months to get ready for this battle. Well, I hope I am training other things, besides my butt, off, because I might need that extra padding for those 56 miles on my bike!



What goals are you sidestepping because you think you can't? Is this acceptable? Are you willing to take the bull by the horns and embark on a journey that will increase your self-confidence, self-esteem and make you feel on top of the world? LET'S DO THIS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

CINDYHN 1/5/2012 2:48PM

    You are an inspiration!!!!

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DDOORN 11/16/2011 8:52AM

    Awesome to hear of all your accomplishments!

Closing in on 2,000 miles cycled this year...!

Keep those blazing SPARKS a-flyin'! :-)

Don

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SLEEPYDEAN 11/15/2011 3:59PM

    I am very grateful for all of the advetnure Spark has brought into my life.

I am so excited to share in another fun event with you in April when we do Ragnar!!!

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ABB698 11/13/2011 1:11AM

    If anyone is meant to be am Iron Woman, it's YOU, Leah! You are amazing, and God will carry you through the training and across the finish line!! emoticon

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SPARKLINGVIOLET 11/12/2011 2:52PM

    Amazing! You're so crazy!! (but in the best way possible! ;) )

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FINDINGMEIN2012 11/11/2011 11:31AM

    Awesome!!!!

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ZORAHGAIL 11/11/2011 10:44AM

    emoticon emoticon emoticon

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LITTLEWING21 11/11/2011 7:24AM

    You rock girl!!!!! Such an emoticon attitude :) You've got this!!!!!!



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FITKITTYMAMA 11/10/2011 10:52PM

    This is sooo awesome Leah!!! You can totally do this! I am so proud of you, you totally rock!!

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APIRLRAIN888 11/10/2011 8:20PM

    wow congratz

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BELLALUCIA 11/10/2011 8:00PM

    Awesome!

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RANDOM00B 11/10/2011 7:58PM

    emoticon emoticon

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L3DESIGNS 11/10/2011 7:55PM

    Congrats!

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JILLYBEAN25 11/10/2011 7:53PM

    Like I said at Iron Girl, of all people on Spark (and that I know in general) you'd be the one to do it! You got this!!!

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LYNNANN43 11/10/2011 7:29PM

    I insist that when you earn this Bling that you wear it for a LEAST one week!!!!

You will sure as heck deserve it! emoticon emoticon emoticon

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GERMANIRISHGIRL 11/10/2011 5:59PM

    emoticon emoticon

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HAPPY92003 11/10/2011 4:47PM

    WooHoo!! Rock it girl!!


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MISSJCISRUNNING 11/10/2011 4:26PM

    You are such a ROCKSTAR!!! You are going to be amazing and I am so grateful I am able to watch and support you in your journey!!!

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Follow your dreams, one step at a time!

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

On Tuesday, May 17, 2011, I drove down to San Diego State University with butterflies in my stomach and a prayer in my heart. It was time. Time to do what, you ask? Time to take my American Counsel on Exercise (ACE) Certification to become a personal trainer. I knew I had studied but felt the only way I could pass the test was by the grace of God. He was the reason I embarked on this journey in the first place. This was HIS idea and I was just being obedient! I relied a lot of Phillippians 8:13 which says "I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me" and Romans 8:28 which says "And we know that for those who love God all things work together for good, for those who are called according to his purpose." Now, if this was, indeed, his calling/purpose for me, then how could I fail? I did my part by studying my behind off but I still felt that ONLY with God, could I do this.

So, when I finally went into the room to take my exam, I knew this was it. This was the time to shine for the Lord. There were 150 questions that were taken on a computer. There was a 3 hour time limit. And so the test began. It was brutal because of the sheer length. It took me about 2 and a half hours to complete the test. I am NOT a slow test taker! So, this lets you know just how time intensive the questions were and 150 questions is A LOT OF QUESTIONS!!! LOL!! The test made me feel like I didn't know very much! Every time I would come to a question that I had not even a guess as to what the answer was, I would just call on Jesus to help me chose the right answer. The test would have driven me crazy if it wasn't for my faith!

Finally, when I finished answer all of the questions, it was the moment of truth. I said a prayer and clicked on the "Submit Exam" button with my heart beating more rapidly and those butterflies came back and BOOM. There was a survey! Haha! Ahhhhhhhhhh!!!! Just give me the results already! So, I answered the survey questions and now my heart was beating harder and there were more butterflies in my tummy and a slight shake in my legs. I submitted my survey and POW!!!! I PASSED!!!!!!!! WOOOOOOOO HOOOOOOO!!!!!! I was so happy and relieved that I almost started crying. This was such a journey of obedience, discipline and faith. The Lord had blessed me and I give Him all of the glory!!! ALL OF IT!!



A journey that started out in December of 2009 on the publication day for "The Spark" I purchased the materials and they arrived on January 8, 2010. I posted a blog about it here: www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_jo
urnal_individual.asp?blog_id=2717066
; and here we are a year and a half later and the outcome of the journey has come full circle. I couldn't be more excited to see what the Lord has in store for me next. There was a reason for this but sometimes we just have to take things one step at a time and have faith that God knows what He is doing. I trust you, Lord! Lead me!

If you have a dream, go for it!!!! YOU CAN DO IT! Really, you can. Believe in yourself and try. I was so very worried I was going to fail but I KNEW I couldn't let that happen. I knew I was going to have to be discipline in studying on my own. I knew it was going to be hard and it was worth it!!! Every moment with my nose in the book, every time I didn't want to and I did it anyways. I don't regret it! Don't live your life with regrets!! Go out there and try. You will never know what type of a success you could have been if you don't try!

God bless!
Leah

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

MORELIE 11/10/2011 10:06PM

    Just catching up after a long time away. Congratulations! You are are very inspring person!

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PENTAD 9/24/2011 11:31PM

    Thank you for sharing your story. emoticon

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RUN4FOOD 6/6/2011 8:41PM

    Thanks for being such a great example of diligence and for sharing your story.
God is good.

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IFDEEVARUNS2 6/6/2011 3:57PM

    Congrats!~ emoticon

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FOZSPARK 5/30/2011 1:26AM

    Awesome job

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RDARLING 5/26/2011 11:34AM

    Congrats! So proud of you! You set a goal and reached it! You ROCK!

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KSGROTHE 5/25/2011 3:26PM

    emoticon emoticon emoticon on making your dream come true! I hope being a personal trainer is everything you want it to be!

- Karen

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FINDINGMEIN2012 5/25/2011 1:23PM

    Congratulations!!!!!

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MARATHONMOM26.2 5/25/2011 11:30AM

    Congratulations my friend! I know firsthand how hard it is to keep on studying, to try to learn it all on your own, and oh! the nerves on test day!! You earned it, not just by passing the exam but by living this life, gaining the experience you will need to help others on their journey.

You are going to be a fantastic trainer!! Can't wait to "talk shop" with you emoticon

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KSIGMA1222 5/25/2011 11:25AM

    emoticon emoticon emoticon

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PMFISH 5/25/2011 2:02AM

    emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon
Amazing what we can accomplish when we prepare and have God's guidance. Congratulations! Now to put in motion what you have learned. I wish you success in your new profession.

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WOLFKITTY 5/25/2011 12:58AM

    YAAAAAAAAY, Leah!!! We're all so proud of you!!! :D I knew you could do this!
emoticon
Jocelyn

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ADVENTURE-GIRL 5/24/2011 7:55PM

    Congrats!

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ABB698 5/24/2011 7:23PM

    emoticonLeah on making your dreams come true!

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SLEEPYDEAN 5/24/2011 7:22PM

    Great job! Thanks for the inspirational reminder to follow your dreams. Sometimes it is hard when you get wrapped up in the "what if".

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MKKAYA 5/24/2011 6:36PM

    Leah so proud of you! you rock my friend! I love how you depended on our Savior for his guideness and help! Congrats!!!


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LYNNANN43 5/24/2011 6:09PM

    I got butterflies just reading your blog. I can't even imagine how you felt!

emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

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HEALTH4LYFE 5/24/2011 6:08PM

    emoticon to you and what an inspiring blog for all to read! emoticon

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FITKITTYMAMA 5/24/2011 6:03PM

    Congratulations Leah!!! I always knew you could do it!!

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TRUEART2 5/24/2011 5:57PM

    WAY TO GO!! Very inspiring blog! Hugs to you friend!

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TABALICIOUS 5/24/2011 5:47PM

  Awesome, congratulations!!!!!! emoticon

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WENDEECOURTNEY 5/24/2011 5:47PM

    SOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO freaking proud of you, my beautiful friend!!!! Way to go! I knew you could do it! emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

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GERMANIRISHGIRL 5/24/2011 5:45PM

    Congratulations!

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SP_COACH_NANCY 5/24/2011 5:35PM

  WOO HOO Leah! CONGRATULATIONS!

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ZIRCADIA 5/24/2011 5:34PM

    Congratulations!!! I plan to do this someday when I can afford it!

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My 6 Word Success Story!

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Things got tough, I got tougher!

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

WOLFKITTY 2/24/2011 12:27AM

    You're so awesome!
HUGS!
Jocelyn

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WENDEECOURTNEY 2/23/2011 12:56PM

    RAWK!!!!

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SCOUT1222 2/23/2011 11:17AM

    That's a great one!

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DDOORN 2/23/2011 9:25AM

    Love it! Reminds me of...that boxer's quote: A hero is someone who gets up, even when he can't!

Don

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ALLDAY 2/23/2011 6:21AM

    emoticon emoticonLove this! Tough chicks rock!

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ABB698 2/22/2011 9:18PM

    Love it!! emoticon So true, stand proud Beautiful Woman, our Fearless San Diego Leader!
emoticon

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Made to Crave...

Monday, January 10, 2011

Hi all,

It has been quite awhile since I last posted on my blog. I read this today and thought that people might really get something out of it. I know I sure did. This is a post from Lysa TerKeurst from Proverbs 31 Ministries and I really respect her. I saw her speak at a Focus on the Family event a few weeks ago and think she has a great perspective that we all can reflect on!


A Call to Action
Lysa TerKeurst

"Do not destroy the work of God for the sake of food." Romans 14:20a (NIV)

Three years ago I was stuck in a rut of wishful thinking and excuses with my weight. At the beginning of each day I would say I wanted things to be different. I would vow in my heart to make things different. I would even make a plan to stop the snacks, increase the veggies, and say no to the desserts.

But then life would happen. And the excuses were so very plentiful. So, my resolve would melt away like butter on a hot yeast roll.

Of course the next morning I would always get up and weigh myself hoping that somehow magic would have happened over night. Despite my indulgences from the day before, maybe the numbers would have gone down.

But the scale was not impressed with my wishful thinking. It could only tell the truth.

And so you know who I'd get mad at?

God.

I'd beg Him to help me one minute while scarfing down an order of fries the next. And then I'd be doubly mad He didn't steer my car away from that drive-thru.

I deemed myself a victim of tragic genetics, overactive taste buds and a stomach that demanded large portions.

What I failed for years to realize is there was a much more significant issue going on.

More important than the ever increasing size of my jeans was the deception going on inside my heart. My weight wasn't God's curse on me. My weight was an outside indication of an internal situation.

Honestly, I might as well have taken Psalm 23 which talks about the Lord being my shepherd and my comfort and replaced His name with various foods. I was relying on food to be my comfort, my ever present help, my guide. Food was the thing that got me through the valleys. It became the friend I wanted to celebrate with in the good times.

I don't write to point out anyone else's issue. There are certainly medical and genetic circumstances that can cause weight gain. But I discovered that my issue was truly a spiritual one. And no diet would have ever been permanently successful until I got to the real root of my problem.

The root of my issue was craving food more than God. I desired and depended on the instant high of physical gratification because I hadn't learned how to let God satisfy my deepest needs. This realization became a call to action.

Maybe as you read my story, something is stirring in your soul. I know this is a tough issue. I've walked through the tears and the feelings of failure. I was the girl mad at God about this whole deal. But I wanted freedom. And I realized that if I wanted to have my deepest desires met by God and not food, I would need to restore God to His rightful place by changing my old thought patterns. Here are some examples I wrote about in my new book, Made to Crave:

Old thought patterns:
"I need these chips. I deserve this ice cream. I must have that extra large portion."

New thought patterns:
Chips will only taste good for the moment. But the calories are empty and will do nothing good for my body. 2 Corinthians 7:1 reminds me, "...Let us purify ourselves from everything that contaminates body and spirit... out of reverence for God."

This ice cream will give me a sugar high but then I'll crash and feel terrible. Psalm 34: 8 reminds me to get into God's word and let it satisfy the deep hungry places of my soul, "Taste and see that the Lord is good; blessed is the man who takes refuge in him."

This extra large portion will overstuff me and make me feel sluggish. I can't look to this food to soothe me. Psalm 34:5 says, "Those who look to [God] are radiant; their faces are never covered with shame."

Learning to do this has been a process that I have to intentionally choose day after day. Eventually, I did lose the extra weight I needed to shed and have kept it off. But the real reward was what I gained with Jesus in the process. He became the best part of my journey. And I wouldn't have missed this new found closeness I now have with Him for anything in the world.

Dear Lord, if this devotion is a call to action that I need to make, please help me. I want to see the root of my issue, I really do. I want to learn to crave and depend on only You. In Jesus' Name, Amen.

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

PATTIJOR74 2/12/2011 9:11PM

    Thanks so much for sharing. I think this is really going to help me!
emoticon

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HONORINGGOD 2/10/2011 9:24PM

    awesome book !!!!!

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RACHSW1MS 2/10/2011 7:56PM

    Awesome blog, thanks for sharing. emoticon

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BELLALUCIA 2/8/2011 9:09PM

    I hadn't visited you in a long time and I feel that God was speaking to me through you! Thanks Leah!

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LITTLEWING21 1/15/2011 12:12PM

    I LOVE this blog, and I wouldn't even consider myself someone who's religious. It brought a tear to my eye, thanks for sharing!

Comment edited on: 1/15/2011 12:13:37 PM

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NONNATAMMY 1/10/2011 10:23PM

    I came across you blog. Thank you for the insightful words. I do think it's is true. I was "made to crave' God not food. I need to remember that. Thanks a lot. God bless you. emoticon

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ACCT1908 1/10/2011 9:11PM

    GREAT BLOG! Thanks for this.

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KSGROTHE 1/10/2011 5:04PM

    Thanks for sharing this post! It reminds me of what I wrote down yesterday during church. The affirmation we said basically said, "Put your trust in God's grace," which is something I have not been doing enough of lately as I stress over my job and my weight loss efforts.

- Karen

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HILLRUNNER 1/10/2011 3:18PM

    Thanks for posting about the book, I had gotten an email about it and found it interesting. I will say that some of the concepts remind me very much of the information in the 12 steps. The one I especially make note of is: There is a hole inside of me and it's God shaped, because nothing can fill it (even food) except God.

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MORELIE 1/10/2011 2:27PM

    Thanks for posting that! I actually had that same one come up as one of my on-line devotionals next week. I'm seriously toying with the idea of getting her book.

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BLESSED2BEME 1/10/2011 2:25PM

    I've been looking into her book. I heard her speak on Klove last week and have been following her blog on their site. If feels like she is talking to me! It finally dawned on me that I was craving food more than I was craving God! Amen for what you have learned!

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HAPPY92003 1/10/2011 1:04PM

    Love it:)

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TRUEART2 1/10/2011 12:31PM

    Awesome blog!

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