Many ladies who have used prayer strategy for weight loss can attest that faith gives them strength and motivation and also makes easier for them to stick to a diet.
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An expert explains:
“Spending even a few minutes a day in prayer or meditation helps women deepen their faith, and this spiritual growth anchors them against temptation and doubt so they’re less likely to cheat or give up on their healthy habits out of frustration.
That’s why so many women who reach their goal weight end up referring to their weight-loss journey as a faith journey, as well.”
~Gregory Jantz, Ph.D., author of The Body God Designed
Prayer Strategies that Women Use for Weight Loss:
Here are some approaches that women have used in their weight-loss journey. You can start implementing the strategies that speak to your heart.
A. Prayer Journal
Dr. Jantz says:
“Prayer is often thought of as something we do verbally or in the quiet of our minds, but journaling thoughts and desires can be a powerful way to seek guidance.
You want to spend some time with your thoughts and jot down whatever comes to mind.
More often than not, God will show you the answers and give you strength in the words you are writing.”
He suggests starting with a prayer like:
What emotions am I feeling?
Is it my hungry heart?”
Lysa TerKeurst’s Prayer and Weight-Loss Journey
When Lysa began faithfully journaling about her weight-loss struggles, in her book she says:
“As I wrote, God showed me that He made us people who would crave, so we would always desire more of Him, but I was misplacing those desires.
When I felt down, I’d eat french fries or a brownie. That would temporarily make me feel good, but food would never feed my soul.”
~Lysa TerKeurst, author of Made to Crave
Once Lysa recognized this pattern, she started to pause when she would get cravings for junk food and pray. This is her prayer for weight loss:
Am I physically hungry or am I spiritually hungry?
If I’m spiritually hungry,
I just need You to be with me right now.
And if I’m physically hungry,
I need Your strength to get something healthy
instead of french fries.”
“Each time I craved something that wasn’t part of my plan, I used that craving as a prompt to pray.
I craved a lot, so I found myself praying a lot, but I stopped filling emotional voids with food and started growing closer to God.”
B. Expressions of Gratitude
Take time to express thanks for the blessings in your life.
“Looking at the positive things you have going for you — say, a loving husband or a flourishing scrapbooking business — shifts your mind-set toward what gives your life purpose.
When you’re focused on these gifts rather than the numbers on the scale, you’re going to have more incentive to be healthy and to stick with an eating plan that makes you more vibrant.
~Charles D’Angelo, author or Think and Grow Thin“
Michele Geldt – Weight-Loss and Faith Journey
Michele, who lost 67 pounds, says:
“Each night before bed I thank God for everything that brought me joy. It helps me sleep more soundly and I wake in the morning knowing there is so much to celebrate in life, and that motivates me.”
C. Spiritual Movement
Dr. Jantz suggests:
“If you find that you struggle to quiet your mind or can’t find words or focus to talk to God, try taking a 20-minute walk or even just dancing free-form around your house.”
The physical activity helps eliminate distractions and allows you to tune into a faithful mind-set.
Many women also find that combining prayer with movement helps them enjoy exercise.
Tricia Greaves – Spiritual Journey for Weight-Loss
Tricia, who lost 50 pounds, shares her experience:
“I look forward to putting on my sneakers and going for my walk-pray everyday.
I lay out my concerns, problems and fears. I ask God for help and strength. And I tell Him about all the things I love about my life.
By the end of my walk, I feel energized, unburdened and peaceful. It’s a very self-caring way to exercise.”
D. Prayers of Petition
Dr. Jantz encourages:
“It’s not uncommon to feel like you’re alone on your journey when the scale won’t budge, but that’s when you need to cry out to God for help.
God says in Luke 11:9: ‘Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you.’
All you have to do is admit, This is bigger than I am and I can’t do this on my own. God will relieve you of your anger, doubts and frustrations and show you the way.”
Carol Allen – Prayerful Journey
Carol’s request for help enabled her to break free from years of yo-yo dieting. She shares:
“I told Him I felt like one of those women in the Bible who had seen all the doctors but had not been healed.
I prayed,‘If you want me to try something to lose weight, please lead me to it.’
Not long after, my hairdresser told me about a diet and I knew it was a sign. I went for it, and now I’m 139 pound lighter.”
E. Daily Devotions
Spending 10 minutes a day studying the Bible can provide an insight and encouragement that helps you grow spiritually.
Emily James’ Weight-Loss Journey with Morning Devotional
Emily, who lost 46 pounds, shares her experience:
“I start my mornings with a chapter from Heather Harpham Kopp’s The Dieter’s Prayer Book.
It gaves me a Bible verse or prayer to turn to when I’m struggling with temptations — it keeps me on track.”
Helpful Devotionals for Your Weight Loss
- Made to Crave Devotional by Lisa TerKeurst
- Purpose Driven Life by Rick Warren
Source: FIRST for women, 2/13/12, pp.34-35