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IMG_1375 jenniferbaringer

One of the things I had to learn very quickly after getting free from my abuser, was I could not trust my feelings. In fact, my feelings had been so completely manipulated by abuse that I didn’t think it was possible to ever recover.

But I did.

I had a counselor who helped me change my life, by teaching me not to allow my feelings to determine my actions, but to use my actions to determine my feelings.

This week I want to share a blog post from Beauty Beyond Bones. Ana blogs about her recovery from anorexia, and she so eloquently speaks to the issue of allowing our feelings to interfere with our recovery in her January 18, 2016 post, Mountain Top Feeling:

Emotion is so flighty. We wake up in the morning, happy, motivated, feeling great – and then by lunch time, something’s happened – maybe we got a bad grade on a test, were on the receiving end of a hurtful or pointed remark, the cat peed on our laundry – whatever it is, we now feel crappy. Back away from the human. Beware of temper.

Or, say we’re super motivated about recovery/faith etc. And for a good 3 months, we’re all for it. We should freaking carry around pompoms because we are cheer-captain-status.

But eventually, that feeling can fade. Even to those with the best intentions.

So if we base our recovery, or our faith, or love for self or another person off how we feel – our emotions — we’re eventually going to find ourselves in the emotional desert.

A recovery wasteland. Standing at the bottom of the mountain, looking up.

So what’s the solution? How does one combat the emotional stagnation? — Maybe, that’s not the question we should be asking.

Maybe we should be asking if there’s another way to go about it.

Here’s my proposal.

What if, instead of basing recovery (or love, faith, etc.) off a feeling, we instead base it off of a commitment?

In other words: recovery is a choice.

Romans 12:1 Therefore, I urge you, brothers and sisters, in view of God’s mercy, to offer your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and pleasing to God—this is your true and proper worship.

Offer your bodies.

Note that this does not go on to say, “if you feel like it.”


Offer it.

 As a living sacrifice.

Sacrifice. That word is not all lovey dovey. It implies that it’s work. You choose to do it even when you don’t want to – or rather, especially when you don’t want to.

Your physical body –healthy and whole– is what you bring to the Father. An offering of worship to the One who gave it all, freely. Regardless of how He felt about it.

Recovery is a choice. A commitment. That – whether I’m standing at the top of the mountain, overwhelmed with the feeling of power and strength; or at the base of the mountain, feeling weak and inferior, unable to go on – I will go on. Because I have made a commitment. That I have chosen to take care of myself – as it is my act of worship.

I invite you to read Ana’s full blog post at Beauty Beyond bones and see what a blessing her blogs are.


I hope this inspires and encourages you as you walk through recovery. It is a process, and it can be done.

If I am praying for you, thank you for visiting with me today.