I have to admit, I never thought I’d write a Christian devotional.
For much of my life, I struggled to even read devotionals regularly. (More about that part of my story here.) Writing my own? Years ago, I would’ve laughed in disbelief. I grew up thinking I’d never be qualified to offer any sort of teaching or guidance on having a relationship with God.
Yet, here I am. The author of a self-published devotional for women seeking eating disorder recovery AND God at the same time. The title is: Recover with God: 31 Days to (Re)Connect with God on Your Eating Disorder Recovery Journey.
Why this topic?
Well, I lived it.
My eating disorder recovery story
You can read the full story of my bulimia recovery here, so I won’t go into too much detail now. What I will say is that struggling with an eating disorder (ED) as a Christian poses a unique challenge—that I personally experienced and know I’m not alone.
In my ten-plus year battle with bulimia, my relationship with God suffered. Every single day I binged and purged, I knew I was choosing my ED over God. I knew it was an idol in my life. A sin. And, though I was convicted, I did it anyway.
Bulimia left me with immense guilt and shame. All the while, I went through the motions as a Christian. Church ever week, worship, reading the Bible, acting like a godly person in public, still saved by grace—but inside, I felt like a hypocrite. How could I pray to God and bring Him into my daily life, yet also give in daily to the temptations and urges of my eating disorder?
What was the point?
The longer I held on to bulimia, the more I pulled away from God.
What I didn’t realize at the time was that God wasn’t waiting for me to get rid of my mess before we could have a relationship. Those were my restrictions, not His. We need God even more in our struggles, not less. He will never abandon us, never stop listening, never shame us, and never stop offering love and grace.
It wasn’t till I recovered in 2016 that I learned this truth. Had I understood sooner, maybe that would have led me to recover sooner. I’ll never know and I don’t live in regret.
But I do want to help those struggling now.
The story behind writing a devotional
Early fall 2022, as I was preparing to speak at a Christian women’s conference, I felt God nudge me to write a devotional for women in eating disorder recovery. The thought came out of nowhere and hit me HARD.
First, the doubts rolled in. I’m not qualified. Where do I start? How would I publish it? Would anyone actually read it? Things like that. You know, impostor syndrome feelings.
But I shushed those thoughts and prayed. It really felt like a God thought, not my own thought. In fact, even thinking about taking on a project like that terrified me. Sure, I’ve dreamt of writing a book since I was a little girl, but that dream didn’t look like this. I wanted to be a fiction writer, or maybe an write an autobiography. But a devotional? You sure God?
God seemed sure. So, I started a very rough outline.
And then I stopped because the women’s conference was fast approaching and I still hadn’t finished writing my talk message. That was my first priority.
Around that same time, I received an email from a woman who read my eating disorder recovery story on my blog. She’d been searching online for a recovery devotional for her daughter, and my blog came up in the search results.
When I read her email, you can bet my mouth dropped open. She wanted to find an eating disorder recovery devotional for her daughter… and didn’t I just feel like God asked me to write one??
Okay God. Message received.
After the women’s conference, I dove back into that rough outline. To be honest, it felt daunting. I really had no idea where to start, so I did what felt logical to me. I decided on a number of days the devotional would cover—31 days—and then confirmed the topics for each day.
From there, I dug deep into the Bible. I started searching for verses to go with each topic and plugged them into my outline. I thought about the messages I needed to hear in recovery, and the key truths I learned—and plugged those in, too.
One by one, each day came together. Not in order. Not by any means. I jumped around a lot. I worked on whatever section I felt lead to focus on in the moment.
For about a month and a half, I gave God my extra time. An hour or two every evening. Half my weekends. Whatever I had to spare, I sat at my computer and gave God that time. And He spoke through me as I typed.
The resulting devotional is as much a test of my obedience as it is a guide for women who need it. And I tell you this, not to glorify my obedience, but to show that God can use anyone, at any level of experience. You only have to be willing to listen and say YES.
I resonate well with what Paul told the Corinthian church:
“1 When I came to you, brothers and sisters, I did not come with superior eloquence or wisdom as I proclaimed the testimony of God. 2 For I decided to be concerned about nothing among you except Jesus Christ, and him crucified. 3 And I was with you in weakness and in fear and with much trembling. 4 My conversation and my preaching were not with persuasive words of wisdom, but with a demonstration of the Spirit and of power, 5 so that your faith would not be based on human wisdom but on the power of God.”1 Corinthians 2:1-5
Any wisdom in my devotional comes from God. I am simply His messenger. Yes, I felt fear—I still do!—but I am facing it. And, above all, the fact that this book even exists right now is a testament to the Holy Spirit and the power of God in my life.
Devotional on Amazon
If you or someone you know is in need of an eating disorder recovery devotional, first know I am praying for you because I pray for everyone who reads my blog. If you feel comfortable doing so, please send me an email so I can pray specifically for you and your story.
Whether or not you email me, you can find the devotional here, in both the eBook and paperback versions.
FYI: You don’t need a Kindle to read the eBook! You can download the Kindle app on your phone and read it that way.
And for the paperback version, Amazon will send you a printed copy.
To anyone who decides to order and read it, I would love your feedback—via email or a review on Amazon.
Or, if you share it with someone else who needs it—bless you for wanting to help.
My hope and prayer is that you (or your loved one) will recover with God, and I hope this devotional encourages just that.
And, if you feel called to write a book… read about all the steps I took to self-publish here.
Disclaimer (excerpted from the devotional):
I am not a licensed professional. Whether or not you currently receive professional counseling, this devotional is not a replacement for that. I do understand that everyone recovers differently, and what helps one person may not work for another. Only you can determine that. If you feel professional counseling is key to your recovery, it is my hope that this devotional will serve as a supplement to that support.
I do not hold a degree or certificate in Bible theology. This devotional is a combination of my own experience, personal Bible study, and wisdom gained from years of listening to actual Bible scholars.
The verses referenced throughout this devotional are taken from various Bible translations. My intent was to make the messages of these verses as clear as possible. If you prefer one Bible version over any others, I encourage you to look up and read these verses in that version.
And lastly, this devotional is not meant to help you achieve recovery from your eating disorder in 31 days. My prayer is that each day will help you work through a specific aspect of recovery as you also grow in your relationship with God.
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