Tuesday, August 14, 2012

7 food week: recap

chicken (grilled), bread (whole grain), cheese (mozzarella), peanut butter, spinach, grapes, sweet potatoes

This week of 7 was HARD. If I had to eat peanut butter toast for one more breakfast I thought I was going to gag. The monotony of eating the same seven foods, day in and day out, was a lot more difficult than I anticipated. By the end of the first day, I had eaten peanut butter toast for breakfast, a chicken and cheese sandwich and grapes for lunch, grapes and cheese for a snack, and a spinach and grilled chicken salad and baked sweet potato slices for dinner. (That's basically what my diet looked like all week). Honestly, by dinner of the first day I was already tired of eating the same foods. So, instead of eating what was on the list, I just didn't eat at all. Needless to say, by the end of the night, I was hungry and a little weak from such a drastic change in diet. As I picked up my Bible to work on my Bible study for the night, I was whining to myself, thinking, "I'm so hungry and weak I don't even know if I can concentrate on this." Mind you, this was after only ONE day, and I totally realize how spoiled I am. Anyway, I opened my Bible to the passage we were studying in Habakkuk, and this is what I read:

Though the fig tree does not bud and there are no grapes on the vines,
though the olive crop fails and the fields produce no food,
though there are no sheep in the pen and no cattle in the stalls,
yet I will rejoice in the Lord, I will be joyful in God my Savior.
The Sovereign Lord is my strength; he makes my feet like the feet of a deer,
he enables me to go on the heights.

-Habakkuk 3:17-19

I just loved the grace I felt when I read this passage. In the midst of my whining about something SO small, God reminded me that HE is my strength and HE makes my feet swift like the feet of a deer. And I needed a reminder that "though the fig tree does not bud and there are no grapes on the vines" (or in my case, "I am only allowing myself to eat seven foods this week and it is not fun and I'm just plain hungry"), I needed to still "rejoice in the Lord" and "be joyful in God my Savior. And, just to make the point a little plainer, I read through my devotion book, Jesus Calling, before going to bed and lo and behold, the verse for that day was the EXACT same verse from Habakkuk. Okay God, got it. 

I realized this week that a huge area I need to work on in my life is gratitude. Instead of being thankful that I had seven very healthy foods in abundance that I could have at any time I wanted, I whined and complained about how I was tired of those foods and I wanted something else, anything else to eat. I couldn't help but think of people who eat rice and beans for every meal, or are homeless and begging for someone to feed them, or children who actually go to bed hungry because they haven't had anything to eat all day, or the 25,000 people who die every DAY of hunger or hunger-related causes. 

Even after one day of limiting my food options, I already wanted to quit. Probably the one thing that spurred me on to completion more than anything was a nine year old boy. This particular little boy is one of my patients who I have been treating for a while, and have come to love him and his family. Because of a medical condition, he is on a severely restricted diet, with supplements via feeding tube. He is only able to eat eight foods. EIGHT FOODS! He does this day in, day out, and has for years. So I figured if he could do it every day for years, I could do it every day for a week. 

A few confessions:
  • My 7 days was actually only 6. The other girls doing this with me started a day before me because I hadn't been to the grocery store yet. I suppose I could have gone an extra day but I thought it was poetic to end on a Sunday. Actually I was just really hungry and wanted to be done with my friends. And eat whatever I wanted.
  • The other girls only drank water. I couldn't give up my morning cup of coffee. Other than that it was just water. No Coke Zero at lunch. Although I always love my morning coffee, I REALLY loved it last week.
  • We decided a little butter, salad dressing, and mayonnaise was okay. I used Chick-fil-A sauce on a grilled chicken sandwich for lunch one day. And I ate a piece of Lindsay's cheesy bread and dipped it in marinara sauce. Whoops.
  • My food list specified only grilled chicken and mozzarella cheese. We went to Mellow Mushroom twice and I got a grilled chicken and cheese hoagie both times. Except it was teriyaki grilled chicken and provolone cheese. Whoops again.
Lindsay and I ended our 7 fast on Sunday evening at sundown. We celebrated with Five Guys Burgers and Fries and had cheeseburgers and fries, and then came home and baked chocolate chip cookies. It was heavenly. 

This week's theme...clothes. Seven items of clothes, all week long. More to come!

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