Thursday, February 08, 2007

Breakfast of Champions

Years ago, when I would have to get up early to get to early morning math class, be at work at 5 am, or just a quick pick me up in the afternoon, I would always get the "BREAKFAST OF CHAMPIONS!!!!" It was very simple, a 20 ounce Mountain Dew and a King Size Reese Cup. I always said to myself, "One day scientists are going to find out that this is the solution to good health. One of these each a day and you will live forever." What a dream that was and how wrong it turned out to be. Oh sure, I was on a caffine high for about an hour but usually right around the time that class or work started, I would begin to crash. I yawned almost non stop and slept any chance that I got. Little did I know, what I DREAMED would be the fantasy health food, actually probably contributed to my diabetes.
I became diabetic and didnt even realize it. Oh sure the signs were there like drinking 3 gallons of water a day, a significant drop in weight and not to mention the 3 or 4 trips to the restroom every hour. I went to Marti Gras just before finding out my diagnosis and I had to spend a fortune buying drinks just to be able to use their restrooms. It took me almost 8 hours to get home from a 5 hour drive. I literally had to stop about every hour on the way home just to use a restroom somewhere. I was always thirsty and always had a bottled water with me.
Once I crashed and came out of the hospital, my sugar settled down, my constant thirst went away somewhat and life went on with one exception. I now HATED water. It was a constant reminder of what I went through and it just tasted awful. Purely a mental block on water but I hated it non the less.
So, I began drinking Diet Dr. Pepper, which led to Diet Cherry Vanilla Dr. Pepper. I love those drinks. Since I couldnt drink Mt. Dew, regular coke, or even regular Dr. Pepper, these became my drink of choice and I had one all the time. I even bought a small refrigerator for downstairs when I wanted a drink and didnt want to go upstairs to get one. Lazyness or efficiency at its finest. I had become a Dr. Pepper - a - holic. No sugar, no calories, but who knows what chemicals are in there that are going to kill us all one day.
Last night, in our Bible Study we talked about the prayer of suffering. The prayer for other's suffering as well as our own. How we turn to God in our suffering and how we can rejoice with God when we come through it. Then the topic of fasting came up. How through suffering without something we need or enjoy, we can get closer to God. Jesus fasted for 40 days. 40 days without food. I can't go past 10:30 until I'm thinking about where to eat lunch and He went for 40 days without food all together.
On the way home from church, Steph and I began talking about it. Sure we were just kidding around at first thinking what we would give up for a 40 day fast. I joked and said I would go on a work fast, not enjoy working for 40 days. Then the question came up in a serious way, I asked her which of her two favorite things, chocolate or coffee would she give up? Surprisingly, she said it would be easier to probably give up coffee but fasting isnt about that so she would give up chocolate. I asked her what she thought I would be willing to give up and the answer came quickly, her sugar free brownies. (That would have been a difficult food to give up but as she is the one who makes them, I am at her mercy)
I thought about it for a few seconds, what food do I enjoy more than others and would be miserable without? The answer was obvious........my little bottle of, so cold that it is slushy, carbinated beverage that I love to have first thing in the morning, my Dr. Pepper. I could make it without chocolate no problem. I'm not supposed to eat it anyway. I could make it without ice cream or cake because again, not supposed to have it, dont have it a lot anyway, but that one thing that gets me going in the morning and picks me up in the afternoon would be trouble.
So she and I have made a 40 day committment. For 40 days, she is going to give up chocolate and I am going to give up Dr. Peppers. That sounds easy I know but it wont be easy at all for either of us. It will give us a reason to pray and ask God to get us through this time. Its our way of saying "I will not have this pleasure but instead, when I want or desire this, I will turn to You God."
As much as I like Dr. Pepper, God is going to be hearing from me a LOT over the next 40 days........."

Stay tuned, this is day 1 and tea just "ain't cuttin' it!"

Dear God,
Thank you for my life. A life where I have had suffering in my life and you have brought me through it. My suffering though difficult, pales in comparison to the suffering of others. Help me to realize why we are making this sacrifice for 40 days and help me to focus on You when the urge or desire comes.