Whatever we are struggling with, whether it be depression, frustration, overwhelming circumstances, stress, anger, loneliness, shame, regret, low self-esteem, difficult relationships, God wants us to run to Him instead of a substance to numb or temporarily cover our pain. He wants us to be Overcomers because He has a destiny calling on our lives.

For me any of those stress-filled issues sent  me running towards unhealthy, sugar-laden foods. The high sugar-content of those foods would make me feel good for a short time and then I’d need more to get me the same feeling. If that sounds like drug addiction, it is. We just refrain from calling it that because it’s a legal drug that makes everything we buy taste better and don’t take into consideration the toll it is taking on our health.

How Destinies are Destroyed

It is slowly, but surely, killing us and destroying our destinies in the process. Obesity is the cause of every disease imaginable from heart disease to many forms of cancer. Some even say it’s the root of Alzheimer’s and other dementia-like diseases. I’m not a scientist so I don’t know the for-sure causes of the rampant rise in all these diseases. However, the rise in sugar consumption has skyrocketed in conjunction with the rise of disease.

Christians feed right into this because it seems like the “sanctified” sin. It’s the one pastors don’t preach against. Just a word search in the Scripture for the words gluttony or glutton will reveal how strongly God feels about us running to food to solve our problems. The Bible has much to say about food addiction. Gluttony is just the Biblical term.

I meet folks every day who have destiny calls on their lives—they are pastors, singers, speakers, chaplains, not-for-profit directors and church leaders. They are using food as a way of escape from the demanding lifestyle that ministry takes on them. This adds pounds to their bodies and eventually they feed right into the evil one’s hands. When they, or we, give into the devil’s temptations, we are no longer resisting him. We have joined him.  

The devil’s mission is to steal, kill and destroy  our destinies, but Jesus came so we could have and enjoy life, and have it in abundance to the full, till it overflows, (John 10:10 AMP).

Set Free to Stay Free

My heart goes out to those, especially ministry leaders, caught in this bondage. See, I was where they are now. I weighed 430 pounds and could barely walk. God showed me how to get free and warned me to never go back to where I was.

“Let me be clear the Anointed One has set us free, not partially, but wonderfully and completely free. Let us always cherish this truth and stubbornly refuse to go back to the bondage of our past,” (Galatians 5:1 TPT).

After losing 250 pounds my life has totally changed along with my eating and exercise habits. Now that I’m healthier I want to remain healthy to fulfill the destiny God has given me.

It was a tad bit scary when God called me write a book. I’d always wanted to write a book, but never could because of lack of stamina, energy and focus. After the losing the weight, He told me I was ready. He revealed to me my life message and asked me to write a book about my journey. So I did. That book is Sweet Grace. I’ve now written six books and two study guides. Right now, I’m working on book seven.

Destinies May Feel Scary

Then God did a truly scary thing. He called me to coach. I never wanted to coach. I wanted to stay safe and secure on the back cover of my books. Instead, He asked me to step up to actually helping people do what I had done. I felt a little like Moses being called to lead the Children of Israel out of bondage. Actually, now that I think about it, walking on foot through a desert eating only manna was a really good healthy living lifestyle change and a great exercise plan. However, they also grumbled and complained a lot.

Before I started coaching, I had nightmares of what might happen when those I coached didn’t follow my suggestions and challenges. God showed me, though, that I can’t control what others do or don’t do. I can just share from my experience—mentally, emotionally, physically and spiritually. Eventually, I said, “Yes,” to His call, but only if He would be the coach and I’d simply be the voice.

Now I coach through because God wants me to spread the message that He is the Overcomer who can help His children lose whatever is necessary. He does this in order to help us get healthy and stay healthy because He has great plans for us.

God Does Have A Plan

God has a plan for us. He loves us and so wants us to succeed. “We are God’s poetry, a recreated people who will fulfill the destiny He has given each of us, for we are joined to Jesus, the Anointed One. Even before we were born, He planned in advance the destiny He has given us and the good works we would do to fulfill it,” (Ephesians 2:10 TPT).

In order for me to step into my destiny, I first had to take care of my larger than life weight issue. I didn’t realize it was related to my destiny, but it was all about that. God had a call on my life and I had to get healthy to step into that calling.

God has a good plan for you, as well. It’s a plan to give you a future and a hope, (Jeremiah 29:11). You may not know what it is yet, but He wants you healthy to complete it. It was so worth it for me to give up sugar in order to step into my destiny. It has been the sweetest decision I ever made.

I have many resources to help you on your journey. The latest one I’ve put together is a free course called Eating Stress. The last lesson in that series is Stepping Into Destiny. Get the course here: https://TeresaShieldsParker.com/stress/.

Also check out Stepping Into Destiny, podcast episode 79.

Teresa Shields Parker
Teresa Shields Parker is a Christian weight loss author, coach, podcaster and speaker, who has lost more than 250 pounds and kept it off since 2013.

Her books include: "Sweet Grace: How I Lost 250 Pounds and Stopped Trying to Earn God's Favor"; "Sweet Surrender: Breaking Strongholds"; "Sweet Journey to Transformation: Practical Steps to Lose Weight and Live Healthy"; "Sweet Freedom: Losing Weight and Keeping It Off With God's Help": "Sweet Change: True Stories of Transformation"; and "Sweet Hunger: Developing an Appetite for God".

She also offers Overcomers Christian Weight Loss Academy and VIP one-on-one coaching program, more information on both is available under the weight loss tab. Don't miss her weekly podcast, Sweet Grace for Your Journey, where she shares tips from her personal journey of losing weight and discovering healthy living. Find that under the podcast tab and anywhere you find podcasts.