Martha Peace Answers a Question

In my book, I quote nouthetic counselor and author Martha Peace's response to a bulimic woman's cry for help. The quote, used with permission, is below:

Q: I have a "secret" sin that no one knows about. I control my weight by making myself throw up after I eat. I feel really foolish and embarrassed and don't want anyone to know. What do you think?

A: Making yourself throw up after you eat is what medical doctors call bulimia. Bulimia is wrong for two reasons: First, it can cause serious medical problems such as damage to your esophagus and your teeth. Second, it is a sin because overeating is gluttony, throwing up is a lack of self-control, and wanting to be thin so badly that you are willing to sin is idolatry.

It is likely that you feel guilty and embarrassed about this, but, since God "gives grace to the humble," I strongly suggest that you get help from the elders in your church. They, likely, will send you to a medical doctor for an examination and also will assign a godly, older woman in the church to disciple you and hold you accountable. Sinful eating patterns tend to be habitual and the change must not only be outward but also in your heart by what you think. God wants us to be grateful for the food we have and not to abuse our bodies. He also does not want us to eat in a gluttonous manner but by His grace to put on self-control. There is a wonderful book that I would like to recommend to you -- "Love to Eat, Hate to Eat" by Elyse Fitzpatrick (Harvest House Publishers). Elyse has done a lot of work with ladies who have eating disorders, and her book is very practical and has a high and proper view of God.** One last thing: your "secret" is not a secret to God, and He has instructed us in His Word to "bear one another's burdens" (Gals.6:2). Get help today, and do it for the Lord's sake.

She's right, of course. We will be talking more about ways God uses other people to help us in future posts.

** Note: I have linked to Fitzpatrick's book at right. I hope very soon to have my own book up there as well.

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