The obvious question is why would I throw up my food for twenty years?
Oddly enough, bulimia turned out to be a symptom of OCD. Find out more here.
Believe it or not, I did not find joy in bulimia. Those twenty years were filled with immense shame, endless frustration, and years of calling out to God to take it from me. The disorder was completely out of my control, and God did not heal me for twenty years.
Why? Why didn’t He heal me? I didn’t want to continue living that way? I was praying for something that would please Him, after all. I asked “In Jesus Name” like it says to do in John 14:14. Wasn’t it sin to destroy my body by purging food constantly? Didn’t God want me to stop? Yet, twenty years passed, and I was still a mess.
He did heal me when I was thirty-three. At just the right time. And I consider it pure joy.
“Do you want to be healed?” Jesus asked the invalid in John 5.
I didn’t. I had another god, and it was my body. I wanted to stop throwing up, but I didn’t want to stop worshipping my god. I didn’t want to be healed because it would mean I would have to surrender to God’s ideas and let go of mine. Long story short, I settled into the idea that I would never be able to stop, bulimia would always be my skeleton in the closet, and I would probably die from it one day.
But never underestimate the power of praying for what you do NOT want.
At a few points during those twenty years, I ended up at death’s door and prayed for God to take the bulimia no matter what it took. And at the right time, He certainly did. When I was thirty-three, God dropped the gospel—the real regenerating gospel—on my head like a bag of bricks, and killed me—dead. But then He brought me back to life as a brand new creation in Him. It’s called regeneration, and it’s real and miraculous. After that, the eating disorder was completely gone. It seems like it was someone else that lived that life! I’m completely new in every way, not just a healed eating disorder, but my thoughts, feelings, and desires! Everything is new like I never thought it could be. But it is, and it was Christ—Jesus Christ—that did it!
Now that I am through the Valley of the Shadow of Death, I see that God was with me that whole time. He knew that He would heal me when He would but I had so much to learn. I needed to know His true and glorious gospel, and I needed to know the emptiness of the god that I was currently worshipping—my body. I was so afraid to let go because what if God’s will included something that I didn’t want? I didn’t trust God, and I didn’t really want to be healed.
Listen, I would have never stopped serving that god of my body if God would have lifted the illness when I asked.
I want to put this out into the world because I know there are millions of people in situations similar to what I’ve described. And I want you to know that though it seems completely hopeless, it isn’t. Call out to God and pray for what you do NOT want. Whatever you are holding on to, tell God that you can’t let go, but that you want to. Then keep praying and wait. And at just the right time, God will lift it. He will.