Are you a binge eater? A secret eater? An emotional eater? Are you a sugar addict? Draw close to the one who can satisfy your craving more deeply.
Those nine little words changed the trajectory of my life when I posted them online in 2014.
Innocently, I invited people on my Facebook page to join me for a 40-Day Sugar Fast. I wasn’t simply having a problem with sugar. I told my friends; I was having problems staying kind and consistent with my closest family members too. Sure I was experiencing physical problems like weight gain, but I was also grumpy, tired, and impatient with my kids and my husband. Sadly, sugar wasn’t making me sweet.
But the problem wasn’t only physical and relational; it was Spiritual too.
Instead of running to The Most High to get through my blessed but busy days… I was running from one sugar high to the next. After a while, I was in as much pain spiritually as I was physically, emotionally, and relationally. I didn’t need any more conviction; what I needed was transformation. I needed more than a diet; I needed something deep within me to change. So I posted this online invitation: “Who wants to join me for a 40-Day Sugar Fast?”
The response was immediate and overwhelming. “Yes,” they cried. “I need this too!” they affirmed. “My name is Melissa . . . My name is Alexis . . . My name is Jenn . . . and I’m a sugar addict.”
There’s something about sugar that has a grip on us, and we know it.
We run to sugar for our comfort and our reward. We turn to it in boredom. We depend on it when life is stressful. We crave it when we’re depressed and use it as confectionary therapy. And even when life is at its best, we celebrate with cake. We’ve been running to sweet snacks to get us through our days for far too long. It’s become a habit. No, worse than that, it’s become an addiction.
Are you a sugar addict too?
If that’s you, if you are feeling powerless over your addiction to sugar, if you have lost sight of God’s power in your life, know that your sweet tooth is not beyond redemption. Fad diets and workout routines can’t set you free, but God can. Sugar is everywhere but so is He. And setting us free is exactly what He came to do!
We’re told in John 8:36, “So if the Son sets you free, you will be free indeed.” That’s what we’re after. I’ve tasted it for myself, so I know it’s possible!
Since that first online sugar fast, my fasting friends and I have found that while our diets have changed, our lives have changed more! Sugar-shackles have fallen off, and we’re enjoying more of the freedom Christ came to bring us. And my original hope and prayer, to be calmer and kinder with my people, has been generously answered too! Physiologically God overhauled my body, but Spiritually He transformed my heart.
As I fasted from sugar, I developed a sweet-tooth for His Word and His abiding presence! And I wasn’t the only one! All of my fasting-friends got hungry for God’s Word!
Here’s why: Instead of taking out sugar and replacing it with healthy food options, we set down sugar and started ingesting our Bibles! We learned together that fasting awakened our hunger for God’s sweet Presence and satisfying Word! Fasting should always lead to feasting!
It’s been nearly a decade since that first invitation, and I’ve been hosting my online community Sugar Fast every year since then. Today, however, I have a practical resource to help my Jesus-hungry friends keep feasting even after our annual fast is through! The 40-Day Sugar Fast book helps awaken our hunger for God, but this new 40-Day Feast equips us to dig in and consume it for ourselves — not for 40 days but for all our days!
Are you a binge eater? A secret eater? An emotional eater? Tell the Lord all the reasons why you can’t go forty days without sugar, and let Him show you that with Him, it’s possible (Matt. 19:26). Set down what you’ve been shoving into the hurts and holes of your life and then intentionally pick up His Word and start feasting on the only thing that can heal those hurts and make you whole!
We suffer spiritually each time we reach for a sugar high rather than the Most High. We were made for more, we were made for God, and our Bibles are where we find Him! Find out more about The 40 Day Sugar Fast and The 40 Day Feast, and commit to taking your deep hunger to the only One who can satisfy, sanctify, and save!
Wendy Speake is the author of The 40-Day Feast, The 40-Day Sugar Fast, and The 40-Day Social Media Fast, as well as The 40-Day Fast Journal. Wendy hosts her online 40-Day Sugar Fast every January and her 40-Day Social Media Fast every Lent. She lives just outside of Dallas, Texas. Learn more at www.wendyspeake.com.