Excerpt from : Let Food Be Thy Gift
Aren’t we tired of being diagnosed? How many times have we been diagnosed in order for the person who diagnosed us to deliver us with their programs and formulas that they guarantee will fix us, change us, help us and save us…if only they can control us enough to buy whatever they are selling?
You are overweight, here is a diet. You need six pack abs, here is a workout. You need peace, here is a meditation app. You are depressed, here are some pills. A diagnosis is necessary because it tells us what’s wrong with us and that we need to be delivered (fixed). But more often than not, it is the one, who diagnosis us, who can also (strangely enough) deliver us… for the right price.
Every day we are being diagnosed and every day we are being offered thousands of delivery programs and formulas that promise the perfect body, the perfect health, the perfect stress level, the perfect home, the perfect kids, the perfect marriage, the perfect skin, the perfect closet, the perfect vacation and the perfect life. Given the availability and “proven results” of all these delivery programs, how many people have achieved the perfect life or have completed the delivery program that FINALLY delivered from doing anymore delivery programs?
UMMMM- NO ONE.
So, why don’t most delivery programs work to deliver us? Perhaps, its time we turned the tables and diagnose the delivery programs to discover why delivery programs usually don’t deliver us.
1) They usually get the diagnosis wrong.
2) They try to deliver you through one part of yourself.
3) They try to deliver you from the outside-in.
4) They are based on us being and living a fragmented life.
5) You aren’t designed to be delivered by a delivery program.
To begin with, delivery program’s diagnosis is usually wrong. The problems that we can easily see are not the real problems. The most obvious issues are the results of the real problem. Stress, injury, pain, tiredness, weight issues, food issues, addictions and relationship problems are usually the “results” of much deeper issues. So, no matter what we do to change the results that we clearly see, the real problem that is causing those results remain unchanged.
You cannot change serious food issues by changing the food. If you’re using food as a means to an end (meaning if you are using food to get a result like weight loss, to change your feelings, give you an identity or get love), then it doesn’t matter what I tell you to eat, you will continue to misuse food and you will never be free or delivered to just enjoy food for the gift that it was designed to be.
Second, programs that reduce you to a part of yourself, like a body, a mind, a spirit, a heart can only deliver that part of you for a short time. Maybe you can get some control over your body by denying it, maybe you’ll take control over your emotions by avoiding them, maybe you’ll get control over those thoughts by distracting yourself with something else and maybe you’ll control your soul through religious rules. But…how long does that control last? How many diets have led to lasting joy? How many self-help courses have given you the control over your life and resulted in everlasting success, happiness, and self-esteem?
The truth is when you spend all your time and energy trying to deliver yourself through one part of yourself, you are also forcing other parts of yourself to stop functioning as they are designed. Let’s just say that you were successful to deliver yourself through one part of yourself, then chances are that you would continue to deny the other parts of yourself. If you could get everything you wanted like peace, love, joy, success, and control through your body, then you would never get to know your heart, mind, and spirit. If you were able to deliver yourself through your spirit or mind, then you would just continue to ignore the needs of your heart and body. Look around, how many religious people, rich people, and successful people do you know who are suffering from diet-related disease and sickness. How many professional athletes and people who are physical superior to all of us are emotionally and relationally lacking?
Third, delivery programs fail repeatedly because they are trying to deliver us from the outside in. These programs give us solutions, formulas and ideas to manage (control) our external issues. 13 steps to manage your stress, 7 steps to manage your weight, 5 steps to manage your relationships and thousands of other ways to manage your weight, relationships, kids, spouses, workplace, home, pets, clutter, car, health, emotions, spirit and on and on and on. Given the epidemics of obesity, addiction, loneliness, and depression… can we admit that control and manipulation do not work to control or transform spirits, hearts, minds, bodies and relationships.
Fourth, these programs are based on us living a fragmented life and being fragmented people where our minds, hearts, spirits, bodies, and relationships are operating independently from one another. A workout does not need your heart, mind or spirit. Your job doesn’t need your heart, spirit or body. Social media only needs a pic, post or 140 characters but not too much of you and, certainly, not all of you.
All these things ask you to reduce yourself to what might be most controlled and most easily consumed by someone else. If you obey and reduce yourself, then according to the comments you might think that you have been accepted… but when someone only accepts a reduced version of you, then you must know that you have already been rejected, and that rejection started with you rejecting your whole self.
Programs can work to get temporary results BUT if every time you have to check a part of yourself at the door to make the program work, it is not healthy or sustainable. You have a built-in rebellion button and trust me your heart is pushing it every time your told “it doesn’t matter what you feel, just obey” and your mind is pushing it every time you try to cram some nonsense down your throat like “pain is weakness leaving the body.” Your spirit is pushing the rebellion button every time you’re told, “You’ll get love if you change, obey, get better, do more and try harder.” Last but not least, your body is pushing the button every time you take control to use it as means to an end.
Your whole person (mentally, emotionally, physically, spiritually and relationally) is designed to come together to create its own balance, flow and rhythm, so you can experience and enjoy life. As long as you are trying to manage and control every aspect of your life, there’s absolutely no way you can enjoy yourself and your life, or experience how it naturally and mysteriously comes together in alchemy to be a place love, truth, hope, joy, faith, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, gentleness and self-control.
So… what’s the real diagnosis?
I don’t believe you have to be a rocket scientist to see we have been trying to deliver ourselves for a long time and we are more exhausted, neurotic, overweight, obsessed, stressed, unhappy, lonely and BUSIER than we have ever been. Maybe, for some, your lives and even your bodies appear managed and under control, but on the inside you are numb, sad, angry, insecure, lonely, anxious and tired. The truth is our collective poor health (88% of Americans suffer from some form of diet-related disease or sickness) proves that we are bingers and yet we are never full. We consume at the highest levels but it is never enough. We have tried to manage our entire lives and I think many of us have started looking back wishing if we could do it again, then we would just enjoy our lives, ourselves, our families, our work and our very short time of being alive.
Food, stress, kids, anxiety, spouses, homes, cars, power, fame, work, money, exercise and things are not the problems and they are not the solutions. It is time to remember who you are and how you are designed to live life and enjoy it as a whole-person in the present moment with hope, trust, peace, joy, and love.
Last but not least, the most important truth to remember is “There is no absolute, omnipotent, omnipresent and omniscient delivery system.” What we have been given is the gift of life and it is meant to be lived with the ups and downs, the good and bad, the challenges and successes as a whole-person with other people.
The real problem is not a delivery system nor can it be the solution. The truth is that we have forgotten who we are and how we are designed to not need delivery programs or formulas to be human and live. It is time to rediscover how we are naturally designed to live- to breathe, listen, ask, look and move to give and receive life, love, hope, Truth, encouragement and help to remember who we are!
You are invited to GIVE UP using delivery programs to get control over things you can never get control over. You are invited to Give Up trying to control life and remember how you are naturally designed to live it, one mysterious day at a time.