I am an enigma. It’s true. In college, I lived in a small, low-cost dorm that was a converted rooming house, called Earleigh Hall.  no one, except the 24 of us who lived there, knew where it was or had ever heard of it.

woman weighing 430 pounds on one side. Same woman having lost 250 pounds

It was an enigma, a puzzling, mysterious or difficult to understand thing. So we made shirts that said Earleigh Hall Enigmas and wore them everywhere. Students began to ask us about our shirts and we told them where we lived. It was right near the quadrangle. They just didn’t know that the house was actually a dorm. My dorm was an enigma and so am I.

Losing Weight By Not Dieting

One of the ways, I am an enigma is that I have lost 250 pounds by not dieting. At least, I don’t diet in the traditional sense of the word. I follow a lifestyle change plan God tailor-made for me. It has good boundaries that I have learned how to  change my habits in order to stay within.

As such, in my coaching group, Overcomers Academy, I teach others how to do the same thing. I don’t teach them how to follow my plan, which is what most weight loss coaches do. I teach them how to go to God to get the plan He wants them to follow.

I knew as far back as 1977 what God wanted me to do. I just didn’t think I could do it. As a matter of fact, I was sure I couldn’t do what He was asking me to do. The problem was, I was also too prideful to admit I couldn’t do it.

Breaking Strongholds

I’ve written six books but my most recent book, Sweet Surrender: Breaking Strongholds, really gets to the core of pride and many other issues I had in my life that kept me from following what I knew God had wanted me to do for years. I had allowed the enemy to set up strongholds in my life.

However, it wasn’t really food, or even sugar that was the stronghold the enemy used to keep me stuck in super morbid obesity, it was lies I believed about myself. Things like I can’t lose weight, I can’t give up sugar, I am a failure, I have to protect myself, I don’t matter, Food comforts me, I hate exercise, and more.

When God began to reveal these lies I believed, He also revealed a huge truth to help me. Unless I work on my thoughts, emotions and spiritual connection with God, I will never lose weight and keep it off.

Surrender to God

Surrendering completely to Him is the main key. It is also the most difficult part of the journey. It involves an all-out commitment to allow God to direct us and be our strength as we begin a total lifestyle change journey.

For many surrender is something they want to do but the actual doing of it escapes them. First, it involves identifying what is standing between us and God, then asking Him to forgive us for going to that substance instead of to Him, then repenting of doing that which means we stop doing that and start doing what God wants us to do.

True surrender involves action. It’s more than being sorry we overate. We must begin to take steps towards learning how to change our habits so food is not the thing we run to instead of God.

I use the words “steps” intentionally because habit change involves gradual changes we want to incorporate into our lives. It’s not an immediate, all or nothing. It’s learning how to stop a bad habit and start a good one in its place.

No Diet Plans

I’m an enigma because most weight loss coaches tell you what to eat and not eat. I don’t do that because we are all different. If you want a diet plan, don’t come to Overcomers Academy. Don’t come in for a month just to get the diet plan, which we do not have. That’s not what this group is about. It’s about learning how to develop your own plan with God’s help.

If you want to learn how to transform your lifestyle, this is the place to come. If you want to join a group of women on the same journey as you, this is the place to come. If you crave learning how to really follow God, this is the place to come. If you feel stuck on your journey and want to get unstuck, this is the place to come.

I won’t promise that it will be easy. I do promise if you put in the work, it will be worth it.

Birthday Special

You may be aware that I have a birthday special for my coaching group running now. Get 50% off your first month when you join Overcomers Academy now through midnight, Aug. 19. You also get a free copy of the book, Sweet Journey to Transformation.

This is a limited time offer. So be sure to get in now while you can. Go here: https://Teresashieldsparker.com/overcomers/.

I’ll see you in the group!

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.