Voices of Recovery today quoted page 3 of The Tools of Recovery, “Although individual plans of eating are as varied as our members… Some plan – no matter how flexible or structured – is necessary.” The story shared by the contributor lines up with my own understanding of a plan of eating (POE) being as vital as any other tool of recovery. How can I abstain from eating what my emotions tell me to if I don’t have a structured plan to keep within? By the same token, I know my POE has to be more specific and flexible than my abstinence, if it is to help me maintain abstinence. In order to keep on the abstinence ranch, I need a plan-of-eating corral well within its boundaries.”

I am about to begin a six-week study on financial balance, and as I gear my mind toward it, I am noticing the word “wealth” in my readings. Proverbs 22:4 is linked to 21:21, which I noted yesterday in that they similarly mention wealth. “Humility and the fear of the LORD bring wealth and honor and life.” The several verses before that point out that both rich and poor share a common Maker (verse 3) and that a good reputation is better than a large bankroll (verse 6). Later, a blessing is given to those who share generously (verse 9), and a curse for the oppressively greedy (verse 16). My prayer is that I may be content with God’s daily provision for me, whatever that is; and that He is blessed, not just by whatever I return to Him – but by whatever I spend my portion on.

In Judges 8, Gideon declined the rule of Israel citing God alone as “ruler,” but is given an honorarium of gold rings. Verse 27 says, “Gideon made the gold into an ephod, which he placed in Ophrah, his town. All Israel prostituted themselves by worshipping it there, and it became a snare to Gideon and his family.” I am reminded that even a hero’s faith can go awry if not kept in alignment with God’s will and instruction. When I was young I sang a hymn, “Trust and Obey.” It seems that all the trust in the world doesn’t work out so well without a healthy helping of “obey” to go with it. God, help me follow You and only You, and guard my steps.

I am looking forward to the weekend convention. My plans of eating and action will take a turn toward the simple over the weekend due to hotel living. I did a little extra at the gym Monday and Wednesday (including a return to the upper-body portion of my weight lifting), and do not intend to workout tomorrow as I normally would. My abstinence will remain unchanged: no sweets, cakes, ice cream or nachos, eating between meals or from packages, and most importantly: no giving in to the “forget it, I’m eating” impulse, and eating outside pre-determined limits (2300-2500 calories per day). The specifics will change from my normal routine, but I am okay with that. I will still try to use as many of my routine-foods as I can carry along (egg, banana, salmon, almonds, sweet potato, romaine, and blueberries). I just won’t get to do the less-portable routine foods (quinoa, my honey-vinegar-gelatin tea, Kefir, and stuff like that). I’ll be keeping it simple. By the way, I do not always record water and herbal tea on my eating log, but I found a tea that is fantastic without any sweetener! It is the Acai-Mango Zinger by Celestial Seasonings. Nice!

My tool of writing will have to be hung up too, at least as far as this journal is concerned. I will still be writing in my paper journal, and I have some workshop presentations to write, and there’s an app for logging my food. So the portable tools will be employed for the weekend. I’ll try to share some of the pearls I pick up over the weekend when I get back.