Streams in the Desert

January 31, 2014 in Uncategorized

I find myself extremely grateful that I am finally making progress once again

It is not that I am seeing any major losses on the scale right now

But more so the fact that I have been able to stop the downward spiral that was taking over

Losing weight and maintaining a healthy lifestyle is something that is not easy

At least not for me

I had hoped that if I lost a significant amount of weight, I would miraculously transform into someone else

Someone who loves exercise and hates chocolate

But that has not been the case for me

I have learned to enjoy exercise

But I still struggle with mentally making myself do it

I find that never really goes away

I actually really enjoy walking once I get out the door

But if given a choice—I would still prefer the couch and remote control

That is something I will always have to battle

The same is true of my desire for food

I assumed that if I could gain control over eating

That would also mean I would lose my love and desire for food

But that is not the case either!

Although I now know how to control it

I still struggle with wanting food as my go-to way of coping in life

I find that I must press in and press through these struggles

Even to just simply maintain the same weight

If I let my guard down in these areas, I will rapidly begin gaining again

And I am well aware that there is no end to the amount of weight I could gain

If I were to give up

So giving up is not an option!!

It is certainly difficult though to stop a downward spiral

But I have found the very best way to do that is by going back to the beginning

Starting fresh

Being gentle with yourself and allowing yourself to once again join the race

As if it was brand new!

Taking those first steps all over again and not condemning yourself for going “backwards”

There is no backwards if you are still trying

There is only round 2, round 3…..round 433 !!

Whatever round in the fight you are on

And there is only respect for staying in the ring no matter how many times you’re knocked down

It simply doesn’t matter why you hit the mat

It is irrelevant why you fell once again

All that matters is your decision to rise again

Don’t tap out!

Don’t let the bell ring!

You don’t have to feel like fighting

You don’t even have to be good at it!

You just have to be willing to stay in the ring

And keep getting up when you fall

You know at the end of the day—that’s really all I do

Because I look around me and see others far more successful

People who decided to lose weight and hit their goal already

People who went from totally obese to personal trainer

Who transformed in every way who they are from the inside out

And never looked back

They are running marathons and winning medals

But that’s not me

I am not the fighter who gets in the ring as the underdog

And shocks the whole world with a major win

I want to be the Karate Kid!!

I want to be Rocky!

But I’m not….

I seem to lose more fights than I win

I seem to fall off track more than I stay on

It takes me three times as long to lose weight as it should

Because of all the detours I take

And that part of it is exhausting


Because I SOOO want to be that person who is CHANGED

Who loves to run and eat vegetables!

But that is still not me

And yet I have found something out along the way

I don’t have to be the superstar

I don’t have to be Rocky or the Karate Kid

Or go through some metamorphosis where I become someone else

Oh it sure would make my life easier if I could!!!

But God has not allowed that

Instead He has shown me that I will stay who I am

I will be that girl who craves cupcakes when she’s sad

And wants food in times of trouble

I will be that girl who prefers Netflix to the Treadmill

A remote control over dumbbells

And I will continue to be the one always pulling up the caboose

If we are in a race, I will probably be the one crossing the finish line

When everyone else already went home

Because it took me THAT long to finish

But God has shown me that it’s OK

That it doesn’t matter

As long as I keep going

As long as I don’t give up

I can be the one in the back of the crowd

I can be the one that has to walk when everyone else is running

As long as I just don’t quit

It isn’t easy for me to watch myself go around in circles

No one hates it more than I do when I backslide

But even when I don’t feel up to trying again

I know that He will renew my strength (Isaiah 40:31)

All I have to do is place my hope in Him

I don’t have to pretend I am strong

I just have to place my hope in the One whose power is far greater than mine

And who has promised to never give up on me

Even when we give up on ourselves

He has promised to bring to completion what He started in us (Phillipians 1:6)

So as I go back to the beginning and once again implement back into my life

The habits that I know help me in this journey

I am reminded of how much easier this really will be

If I stop expecting myself to be the hero

And instead place my hope and trust in Him to get me through each day

I don’t have it in me to avoid food or go to the gym

It just isn’t in me to do it


I never could have lost one single pound without Him

Sometimes I forget that though

There are times in the past 2 years

Where I have grown overconfident in my own abilities

And then I crash

Because  I thought I had it all under control

I thought I could let things slide

I am reminded of this verse

So, if you think you are standing firm, be careful that you don’t fall!

1 Corinthians 10:12

And I have fallen

More times than I can count

Into holes of my OWN making

Deep pits that I created

No one’s fault but MINE

And while this verse is a warning

It does not leave us without hope

Because He also tells us that if we DO fall

We have an Advocate!  One who will stand with us and help us up! (1 John 2:1)

He will wipe the slate clean once again and then encourage us to keep pressing on



After a big fall, we may look around and see nothing more than a dry desert

No hope in sight

But God has promised to make a way where there seems to be no way

He said we will see streams in the desert!

And as for your past?

As for yesterday?

This is what God says

18 “But forget all that—

it is nothing compared to what I am going to do.

19 For I am about to do something new.

See, I have already begun! Do you not see it?

I will make a pathway through the wilderness.

I will create rivers in the dry wasteland.

Isaiah 43:18-19


This week I am going back to the beginning

To the very FIRST habit that I ever started trying to implement into my life

When I could do nothing but lay in a hospital bed with an IV in my arm

At 417 pounds

Before I could even get up and walk those first few steps

There was water

That came before anything else

When I came out of surgery, I was not allowed even ice chips the first day

My lips were dry and cracked

Only a wet washcloth could give me any slight relief

But finally I was given water

And at first I could get only a few sips in

I remember how thirsty I was

How desperate I was to quench that thirst

Every day I was diligent to fill up my water bottle

It was the first thing I did

Just as I was diligent to go to God before my feet even hit the floor

Before I even started trying to do one single thing on my list

I asked Him to help me

I thanked Him for another day and I put my trust in Him to see me through

That’s the Living Water  (John 4:14)

The water that truly gives life and hope

He is the One making streams in the desert

The One who can come into our circumstances AS THEY ARE

And give it life

He can come right into our world and put a fresh spin on it

We only need to step out in faith

I am reminded this week of the importance in water

That the first habit for me was filling up a water bottle daily

With water for my body

And the Living Water for my spirit

Both are necessary first steps for me to ever see the light when I’ve fallen

And isn’t it amazing?

That He never stops filling our cup?

But we must never stop returning for the refill daily

Just as our water bottle must be refilled every day

So must our spirit be renewed with the Living Water


If you are struggling today–have hope!

Fill up a water bottle today as a first step

And then try going to the source of Living Water

The one who promises streams in the desert

When this becomes our habit

We never have to thirst again!


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{ 8 comments… read them below or add one }

Karen P January 31, 2014 at 1:52 pm

Keep going Holly!!!! Keep up the great work and glad you are stopping the downward spiral. Onward.
Karen P recently posted..Myth busting Karen style- “Fruit did not make me fat”… well, maybe it did…My Profile


Shelley January 31, 2014 at 5:36 pm

Oh Holly, what a blessing you are to me and thousands of others! I needed your post this morning so badly! I read it while listening to “OverComer”. God is so awesome!! You and your post are an answered prayer to me right now!! I am on Day 3 of the pre-op diet and have really stuck to it but was having a very hard time just a few minutes ago. I don’t know how I will ever break my habit of turning to food (or alcohol) for comfort, by my own strength, I can’t, that’s for sure. Thank you for speaking out for God as our source of strength! It does seem like some people don’t struggle as much as others; everyone has his own cross to bear and there are so many that are so much worse off than I am that I try so hard not to feel sorry for myself. God is definitley using your struggle to teach you and refine you and to help others who are struggling. We are all in different stages in our journey and to so many of us, YOU, Holly, are the inspiration! Thank you again for not giving up and for pulling us up with you!!


16blessingsmom January 31, 2014 at 9:56 pm

Holly, you are awesome. Don’t ever ever forget that. I won’t ever be that girl either, that girl who says that fast food doesn’t even appeal anymore, or that the mere thought of donuts is sickening. Nope, I will be fighting this beast until the end of my days, but I won’t give up either. It just isn’t an option. Sometimes I envy my daughters, who can eat chips or cookies and stay slim. But I have to remember that this is MY battle, and to keep my eyes on my own plate. I love love love coming here and reading your encouraging posts. Keep up the fight!!!!!



Lori January 31, 2014 at 11:46 pm

I am totally with you about wanting to be the girl that likes vegetables and exercise, but that is not me and probably won’t ever be.

I’ve lost count of the number of times I’ve started over. I feel like I’m in there fighting all the time, but to no avail. Whatever I do, doesn’t seem to work. I also know that doing nothing is worse, so I’m struggling still to find the right path.
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Heather C February 1, 2014 at 3:07 am

Well, I food may be my addiction, but God knows I am in good company ;o) I am a fairly good water drinker, but probably because I dehydrate so easily! Even small amounts of caffeine (in the form of unsweetened iced tea) takes its toll on me. I am thankful for this bwcause it DOES help.


Shay February 1, 2014 at 4:16 pm

What an inspirational post! Keep doing what you’re doing, Holly!
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Jenny February 1, 2014 at 5:18 pm

Holly, thank you, thank you, thank you.


beth February 3, 2014 at 9:06 pm

Hi, Holly – have read your blog for a while now, on and off. I’m 408 lbs. and 4.5 days sober into this addiction to sugar (that includes carbs). Thank you for being there, for sharing your story. You are appreciate more than you know.


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