Defined by Obedience, Not by a Number (and a Giveaway!!)

GIVE-AWAY UPDATE: For those of you who haven’t left a comment yet, there is still time to hop on and be entered in our little incentive give-away. Just leave your quick thoughts before 11:00 pm EST Thursday when the random winner will be chosen. And tomorrow, I will be posting a yummy, healthy recipe to try this weekend….

Hello, Wednesday weigh in gals! I have been so looking forward to this day. Not because I got to hop on the scale and see if the red needle went down, but because I get to check in with all of YOU!!!!!

If you haven’t joined our little cyber group of girlfriends, don’t fret! Newcomers are always welcome.You can get caught up by clicking on Weight Loss Wednesdays in the side bar.  

And this week, we even have a little incentive giveaway I’ll tell you about in a minute.

Sooooo, how did it go? We were encouraged to figure out our calories, stick to the budgeted amount and then write down what we ate each day. And we said we’d move more. Walk, ride, aerobicise, etc… If we did these things, the scales would go down. 

Did they?

I was very hopeful as I hopped on the scale this morning. I kept track of my food, exercised 5 days at the gym for 30-45 minutes and my jeans were zipping up much easier than expected. So I whipped the scale out of its locked down location (I’ll post someday about my need to do this since hopping on the scale more than once a week proves often to be detrimental to me)

It said I lost …. 1.8 pounds.

A measly 1.8 pounds!


I was sure it would say at least 2 or maybe even 3. 

I felt gypped.

And I felt like running to the kitchen to make a frozen waffle or two, slather it with real butter, spread it with some Peter Pan and douse it with a load of pure maple syrup to drown my sorrows.

Then I stopped and remembered what I felt the Lord wanted me to say to you this week.

Define your week by obedience, not by a number on the scale.

The scale does help measure our progress, but it can’t tell us everything.

It can’t tell us if the problem was too much salt of late that is making us retain a pound or two of water that might not otherwise show up.

It can’t tell us if we actually lost a pound of fat but gained more muscle from weight training that wouldn’t show up as a total loss on the scale.

And, (in my case this week) it can’t tell us what time of the month it is and then give us automatic credit for the extra two pounds or so that glorious few days brings to us.

So I had to stop.

I had to ask myself the following questions:

  • Did I overeat this week on any day?  No.
  • Did I move more and exercise regularly? Yes.
  • Do I feel lighter than I did at this time last Wednesday? Yes
  • Did I eat in secret our out of anger or frustration? No.
  • Did I feel that, at any time, I ran to food instead of to God? Nope.
  • BEFORE I HOPPED ON THE SCALE….did I think I’d had a successful, God-pleasing week? Yep!

So, why oh why do I get so tied up in a stupid number!!!!!! And why did I almost let it trip me up and send me to the kitchen for a 750 calorie binge? (Don’t worry. I had a yogurt and tea instead.)

Sweet bloggy friends, we need to define ourselves by our obedience, not a number on the scale.


Pinky promise?


Now, how did you do this week? Leave your thoughts and how many pounds you lost (or perhaps gained) if you’d like, but you certainly don’t have to.

I am more interested to see what changed for you? Your thought patterns? Habits? Feelings of hope?

Hop on and leave a comment. Hop on again to encourage someone else who left a comment.

We are all in this thing together.

And we WILL get the weight off, even if it is 1.8 pounds at a time!

But first, for the little perk-you-up giveaway and this week’s assignment. 


(Fuzzy picture snapped with my cell phone. Can’t find the card reader for the camera, sorry!)

One of you will be chosen at random to receive a cute, clever and colorful notebook with elastic tie-shut  to record your food in each day as you log your calories. Also, I’ve included a pretty silver Breast Cancer Awareness pen, two bags of one of my favorite teas (Passion by Tazo) and two Soft-lip chapsticks. One in Cherry and one in Coconut Cream. Slick some of these on when you have a sweets craving and sip the tea with a little Stevia or Splenda  or even plain.


And your assignment for this week (being Halloween when chocolate and all things sugary just float in front of your face screaming “Eat me!”) has to do with sweets.

Now I know some gals who lose weight by sticking to a strict never-will-any-sugar-touch-my-lips-at-any-time rule. And it works great for them. If that is you, bravo! 

However, for me, I had to learn to CONTROL my sweets; to have just a dab of them now and then; to learn to treat them as treats, not one of the major food groups. I was prompted to do this by a woman in my Weight Watchers class who had lost 167 pounds and was trying to lose 40 more.

She was an inspiration.

And, she ate chocolate every day when she shed those 167 pounds.

Yep, each night when the kids were in bed, she settled in to read, fixed herself a hot cup of black coffee and ate 6 Hershey’s dark chocolate kisses.  They are 20 calories each so her little treat was 120 calories each night.

She planned for it.

She ate it s-l-o-w-l-y.

She thoroughly enjoyed it.

You see, I really don’t think for me that just chucking all treats from my life is always the answer. There are times that I do refrain from eating certain things because they trigger me. Other times, I feel God is telling me that by just refusing to deal with them, I am refusing to take the test. He wants to test me to see if I can control the treats rather than the little buggers controlling me.

So here is your assignment this week (unless you really fell called to a no-sweets plan)

Eat a treat. 

No, this is not a trick…

Plan for it. Save the calories. Make sure you are really hungry when you do eat it. And, next week, tell us what happened when you did.

Just think this way when it comes to treats, “Less and less often” Meaning eat less (half a piece of pie rather than half a pie!) and do it less often (once a week rather than nightly.)

We can still see the scales move downward even with an occasional treat. And I know for me, it helps to keep me from chucking the whole weight loss thing because I can’t go out for dessert with the gals or try a small piece of the birthday cake or whatever.

So, this week don’t be tricked….you can have a treat! 

Okay, I now can’t wait to hear how your week went and to give away our little give-away :-)

Comments, please…

Not-just-a-Number Blessings,


  1. I love this group! I found you all by reading the Made to Crave devotional by Lysa Terkhursrt (I hope I spelled her name correctly). I was all alone in my pursuit of God in healthy eating. But, God showed me through you all that I am not alone! Even of never meet any of you face-to-face you streng
    then me! Thank you. I lost 4 pounds this week! Praise God! My major change has been my mindset.

  2. I really feel like this, too. I am not into being controlled by food either way, by being so hung up about what is in it that you have to buy ‘special” stuff just to eat, or by just binging on whatever you feel like. There has got to be a happy medium, and that is what I’m looking for. Down 1.2 this week. And very obedient.

  3. It’s been insane around here. two weeks of illness, illness and more illness. Not me, the kids and hubby has been pretty ill. I’ve been stress eating through it all. I just went back to the record it all and calculate blog entry and read forward to here. I’ve got my notebook. I’ve got my target calorie count now I just have to plan my eating day. So better late than never, I am on board. Hope I’m still welcome to be an accountability partner.

  4. I’d love to join the group, if it’s not too late. I’ve lost 30 lbs but the last two months, I have not been motivated & have been eating a lot due to stress, worry, vacation……. So, I”m in – thanks so much for your ministry.

    I love you too at Hearts!!!!

  5. Thank you very much, Karen!
    I’ve read your books. They are so wonderful!

    I would love to join the group.
    Thanks for the support!
    Regards from The Netherlands.

  6. Ack!! A week went by already?!?! I’m not doing so good. But I’m not trying so good either. I don’t need encouragement…I need a swift k… uh…anyway.

    Ok so I’m 36 yrs old, 5″5 and last time I checked I was between 165-170. It’s hard for me to believe that according to the BMI chart being 150 is the highest weight I should be without being considered overweight. I’d be ECSTATIC to be 150. And that’s really my goal.

    Ok so I’m really really really going to try harder this next week. I’ll tell you one think that keeps running through my head every day for a couple of weeks no ( … seriously thinking God might be trying to get my attention here…) and that is to cut out sugar. Come again?… yeah. I mean, THAT. That petrifies me. Is that even possible, to give up sugar???

    And over the last week I’ve been trying to think of ways to be holistically healthy. Dr. Andrew Weil comes to mind. Anyone have any thoughts on him?

    Oh and I just got to be corny and say Ladies (and any men?), just BE GOOD to yourself ok? You are most definitely NOT a number.

  7. I have been writing down everything I eat since April 24th and it has made a huge difference. OK… I don’t include the bites that I don’t swallow! Yes… you did read that correctly. Sometimes I just have to have a bite of a pumpkin muffin or an oatmeal raisin cookie. Since I can’t have grains or sugar I have my taste and then with dainty, ladylike finesse, I spit it into a napkin when no one is looking. It’s ugly and I’m ashamed but… there you have it.

    I did lose 2 pounds this week and that’s the most I have lost in a week for a few months so I’m pretty excited. Thanks for the group encouragement. I love the extra support!

  8. Didn’t do so good this week. I have to write things down, but it is sooooooo hard for me to do that. I don’t know why, just find it difficult. Gonna be better this week.

  9. I too am down 2 lbs. Was unable to go to the gym this week due to a strained back – but watched my calories carefully and happy to be down 2. I’m going to try and work in the Wii fit this week. Baby steps….

  10. Karen, thank you for the encouragement and accountability. The dailyness of the battle can get lonely and long. The stories shared here make that not so much. Thank you!

  11. I am joining in. I started off this year really great with an 18 pound loss in the first couple of months. Since then, however, I have stayed the same or gone up and down about 5 pounds. I have just recently worked out a plan in my quiet time with the Lord that focuses on obedience. He is so good the way He brings things together. Just this morning, I was thanking Him for the small victories I’ve had this week, mainly keeping my commitment to: exercise each morning, not get seconds at dinner, and brush my teeth after dinner so as not to eat snacks. Just something I need to do right now. So, Karen, your blog entry is so edifying to me today.

    I’ve decided to weigh myself on Thursday mornings. As of today, I’m down 2.2 pounds from last Thursday. More importantly, I have, by the grace of God, been obedient this week. Thanks, Karen, for providing a place for accountability, and thanks, ladies, for sharing your stories. I look forward to seeing what God will do.

  12. I got a late start and just officially began yesterday, which was a good time. I kept to my points budget and spend 40 minutes exercising. Today I have dusted off my pedometer and my goal is 10,000 steps today. Thanks for your encouragement. Sometimes it gets very discouraging when the scale doesn’t reflect what we think it should.

  13. Thanks for doing this Karen. I have done so much better this week. I am only eating when I am hungry. And have tried to cut out all my snacking. If I do get hungry, I have ate nuts or an apple with peanut butter.

    I am down 5 lbs! :) But have a long way to go!

  14. The questions you asked yourself regarding how you did this past week were great. They were a bit more convicting for me though, as I was not obedient in the food area. Getting out and run/walking most days this week was a benefit for me and I did manage to see the scale drop a pound.

    Thanks everyone for the encouragement. May this be a start to an even a better week for us all!

  15. I want to be honest here so I have to say that I did just okay this week. I started out strong but ended up overeating this weekend. We attended a wedding where I saw many friends I haven’t seen in at least ten years…I was very stressed about it. I know that there were times I ate just because I was nervous, and other times I was just not paying attention to what I ate.

    I am so glad for the accountability your weekly blog will be for me. Your post and all of the comments here are so encouraging.

  16. This week I lost 4 lbs. Don’t be jealous. This is what my body does. I’ll lose 4-5 lbs. the first week and then it will slow down to 1-2 lbs. each week after.

    I LOVE the story about the Weight Watcher pal who planned for 6 kisses each night and looked forward to it.

    Tonight, I had a cup of decaf tea, a regular kiss, and it was JUST what I needed. I’d rather eat sweets and plan for it so I don’t feel deprived and eat the whole bag.

    “See” less of each of you next week!

  17. All of your posts were so encouraging. I had been focusing on one thing at a time. I sort of started out the week working on getting the eating under control, but I did not count calories. I plan to do that this week. That has worked in the past for me and I know it is a good plan. I did not add working out until today. I had been walking and doing some DVDs over the summer, but my feet bothered me. So, I took a break for a bit and now that I am watching what I am eating, I got on an exercise machine that would not stress my feet and joints very much. Although, I did not feel very encouraged by how I was doing so far, your posts, verses that you have shared and the idea of being obedient are great to help keep going. I look forward to the journey with you all and serving Him by taking care of what He has given me so that I can give my all to Him in other areas as I have more energy.
    Many blessings to you all. Have a great week!

  18. I thought I had a good week, but the scale actually went up 1/4 pound. But, then I read your blog and could say yes to most of those questions. And, I had to remind myself of my triumphs: I went clothes shopping for the first time in about three years and was pleasantly surprised at the size, no not a perfect size ten but not bad either; then after going to the store three times in one day I still did not buy the chocolate covered pretzels drizzeled in white chocolate and sprinkled with candy decorations even though they screamed at me every time I walked by. I’m not a number and this is a marathon not a race.

    God Bless and until next week

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