Out of our biggest mess will come our greatest message if we give it all to God. For years I felt like a mess with so much weight on my body I could barely move. I tried to fix it myself but every time I tried to diet, it would just result in me losing weight and gaining it back again plus more. Dieting made me fatter.

I made a big mess but I worked with God to help get it cleaned up. When I finally submitted totally to God and allowed Him to show me how to lose the weight, He started revealing the message He had for me to share. It came directly out of my experiences of losing weight or cleaning up my biggest mess.

God will use our experiences as trophies of His grace. Ephesians 2:7 TPT says, “Throughout the coming ages we will be the visible display of the infinite, limitless riches of His grace and kindness which was showered upon us in Jesus Christ.” This is where we are headed. He wants to show people that if we can do clean up our messes with God’s help, anyone can.

When I came to the lowest part of my journey, I prayed for a restart button. Can I just have a do-over God? Can I just start over? I promise this time I’ll listen. This time I’ll let you lead because I made a big mess trying this on my own. That’s when my lifestyle change journey really began because I was finally willing to let God lead me.

Murderers Who Wrote the Bible

Several years ago I heard a pastor say 15 books of Bible written by murderers. I found there were possibly 20 books that were written by the three men he was referring to—Moses, David and Paul. Moses is credited with six books of the Bible, David with one and Paul with 13.

Moses’ biggest mess was killing the Egyptian. See Exodus 2:11-15. In Acts 7:30-36 recounts the story of when God gave Moses his message to share with the world. This came after Moses spending 40 years in the wilderness learning valuable lessons.  When God spoke to Him in the burning bush He called Moses to deliver the Children of Israel from the Egyptians.

David’s biggest mess was his affair with Bathsheba and then masterminding the death of her husband, Uriah. This is told in 2 Sam. 11:14-18. God forgave David when David got on His face in heart-felt repentance, His greatest message can be found in Psalm 51. Despite everything He did, He is still called a man after God’s own heart.

Paul’s biggest mess was persecuting, arresting and killing Christians. Acts 7:57-8:1 tells the story of the stoning of Stephen. Paul was the mastermind behind his death. One translation even says Paul took “pleasure at Stephen’s death.”

He was on the way to find more Christian to persecute when Jesus revealed Himself. Paul’s dramatic salvation experience on the Damascus Road is recounted in Acts. 22:6-11. After that, Paul became a vibrant missionary to spread the word of Christ to all people. Letters to the various churches he founded make up half of the New Testament. Out of his biggest mess came his greatest message.

My biggest mess was gaining up to 430 pounds. My do-over took many years of working through my issues until I had an aha moment like Paul did. I understood I was a sugar addict and started losing weight. In doing that, t I really felt like David. I was mourning what I had done and repenting realizing it really was a sin against God.

Moses didn’t want to go back to Egypt. He was scared. David was on his face in repentance. Paul needed help from the very ones he had been persecuting to make sure the Romans didn’t kill him once they found out he had switched sides.

I felt a little like all of them on my journey. I needed help from mentors. I definitely spent a lot of time on my face in repentance for rebelling against God and not listening to what He wanted for my life. Mostly though, when God called me to speak, I was like Moses. I was scared.

My Mess Turned Message

After losing weight, I wrote my memoir Sweet Grace. That led to speaking invitations on Christian television and radio talk shows. I didn’t want to speak. So I’d prepare and have everything written out, but I found I rarely looked at my notes. In His graciousness, God broke the stronghold I had that said I can write but I don’t have a voice for speaking.

God led me through my fear of speaking to the point that October 2019 I answered His call to begin the Sweet Grace for Your Journey podcast. That was never on the list of things I wanted to do, but God in His wisdom knew.

I led a Sweet Grace book study at my church. Towards the end three of the women stayed after and told me they had been following what I had been teaching, but were concerned because the class would be ending soon. God used that session with them to call me into coaching.

I was reluctant at first because I know all the excuses for not losing weight. I wallowed in those excuses for way too many years. I wasn’t sure I wanted to go back through what I’d just come out of, but God assured me He would give me all I needed to coach. I opened my first coaching group on July 1, 2014.

Since then my coaching group, courses, books, podcasts and social media posts have reached thousands of people. It’s beyond amazing to me what God did when He gave me the message He wanted me to share. I thought I was just losing weight to feel better, but God had so much more in store than that. He wanted to use my mess to help others.

Give It To God

God will take our biggest mess and create our greatest message when we submit that mess totally to Him. Only He can do that. We can’t orchestrate it. I had no idea what God was up to when I finally surrendered my sugar addiction to Him and allowed Him to remove the strongholds which were keeping me stuck in super morbid obesity.

I really began my weight loss journey out of selfish reasons. I wanted to feel better and look better. However, God wanted me to live a better, more fulfilling life. I didn’t have a clue what that looked like, but He did.

I don’t know what God has waiting in your future, but I do know what He wants for you right now. He wants you to be healthy—body, soul and spirit. If you need help with that, I’d love to have you join Overcomers Academy.

Are you ready to unload your heavy burden and let God take over? He’s waiting for you

For more on this topic, check out podcast episode 43, Do-overs. Go HERE.


Teresa Shields Parker
Teresa Shields Parker is a Christian weight loss author, coach and speaker, who has lost more than 250 pounds. Her book, "Sweet Grace: How I Lost 250 Pounds and Stopped Trying to Earn God's Favor", is the number 1 Christian Weight Loss Memoir on Amazon. Her other books include: "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, both available under the weight loss tab. To book Teresa for your next event, check the Speaking tab on her website. Also check out her blog and Sweet Grace for Your Journey podcast under the tabs by those names.