The 7 Challenge - Day Two {Food}

Apparently, I can not say no to Turkey Tom's from Jimmy John's, Potato Chips from Jimmy John's or Oatmeal Raisin Cookies. I can, however, say no to bottled diet coke and diet dr. pepper. I'll celebrate that small victory over commiserating my failing to stick to the allowed foods.

The day started off early and well. I had a meeting in Tulsa, so I was on the road by 6am - all so I could see Laurie's shining face. And eat homemade scrambled eggs with grape tomatoes (which were delicious). If only I could have (or would have) packed a lunch instead of simply eating what was provided at the day's meeting.

I also consumed more coffee than initially planned. And some of it came from Starbucks (in the morning) and McDonald's (in the afternoon). I figured the money spent on much needed caffeine, which resulted in my being able to stay awake for the entire drive, was well worth it.

I felt a lot of weightiness today. A lot of thoughts about how am I going to do this for 30 days. Wondering if I can even make it through this month let alone the six that follow. I could choose to do each challenge for only a week, but I feel so convicted in needing to do all seven for a month each. It's time to leave my comfort behind.

There's only way I am going to make it through this month and the months that follow. And that only way? Lots of prayers. The trouble with that is that I struggle with my prayer life. I don't want to struggle, but sometimes (a lot of times) it feels as though nothing is happening. I get distracted by the million thoughts running through my head. I feel selfish for praying through things. And I feel like I'm not quite "Christian" enough for my prayers to matter.

But I know they do matter. There's no such thing as needing to be a super Christian for your prayers to be answered. It's time I release that mindset, forget about the wonders over whether or not I measure up as a Christian, and simply pray.

That's what I worked on driving back from Tulsa. Or at least it's what I planned to work on. A two-hour trip seemed like the perfect opportunity to pray and let God do some work. Except that as soon as I got in the car, I froze. I had a hard time even thinking through what my prayers would be. And I found myself not so sure about what I wanted from my prayers. Or how I wanted to pray. I overthought every bit of it.

And then, I stopped at McDonald's where I ordered a large, vanilla iced coffee, considered eating Chicken McNuggets and settled for a low-fat ice cream cone instead. That was a reminder of why it's time to turn to 7 and to turn away from excess.

It's the excess that's blocking me. I have too many options, too many ways to distract myself. Too many opportunities to busy myself with things other than prayer. It's time to limit those options, to lessen those distractions, and to just slow down.

There's movement in the Church right now. People clinging to Jesus and asking for radical things to be done. There's change in foster care. And hope for the future. And all of those things are deeply on my heart. But I can not do any of those things alone. I need Jesus.

Food is never going to be enough. Not even the Jesus approved, trans fat free, fried in peanut oil Chik-Fil-A. Not even the avocados I am still excited to consume. And never the gloriousness that is Jimmy John's #4.

But Jesus? He's enough. More than enough. He's everything I need.

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