Monday, February 20, 2012

Being held captive... by Pepsi?

So as I sit here going through Beth Moore's "Breaking Free" Bible study we have come to the obstacle of idolatry. I knew from peeking ahead it was coming and I dreaded it. I knew what it meant I would have to give up. She defines idolatry as "Anything we try to put in a place where God belongs".

So how does Pepsi fit in?

Once my "go to" was alcohol. I say that and immediately want to make excuses... I was never a "bad" alcoholic or anything. I just liked to drink with friends and didn't know when or want to stop. I was a nice drunk. People enjoyed me drunk. The only person that didn't was my husband. Of course he was the only one there 2 hours after I stopped drinking and sat bawling on the bathroom floor. He would tenderly take care of me and show far more tenderness then I deserved in my self-induced misery. On 2 separate occasions alcohol almost cost me my marriage. The consequence of Alcohol became too great. So now it's something we avoid. For us (this is a "us" rule - we are not anti-alcohol, just anti-us drinking any of it) alcohol is extremely hazardous to our marriage so it is not allowed in our home.

After that my "go to" was smoking. I (of course) smoked while I drank but when I gave up drinking I was not going to give up smoking too. I am still looking for that scripture in the Bible that says one vice is allowed. I knew God would understand though. After all how else was I, a God fearing saved Christian, going to get de-stressed? My life was full of stress too. I had a home, a hard-working husband, a cat, a working car, a good job with a nice boss. We had food on the table and powered lights over our head. We did not go to bed wondering if we would be killed, freeze to death or die of heat stroke. Indoor plumbing is something you take for granted until some dear friends are telling you about their mission trip to Belize where "it" was literally running down the street. You see ladies... so much to be stressed about (please, please read the sarcasm I intend here).

I gave that up when my oldest daughter was about 9 months old. She had chronic ear infections and was consistently sick. My de-stressing was not worth her health. So I put them down and walked away. Occasionally I still have delightful stress free dreams of cigarettes. I know - I'm weird. Also one of the few non-smokers on Earth that like the smell.

So that brings us to today. When in great moments of stress I turn to ....Pepsi. Are you seeing the problem? Instead of turning to the Almighty glorious God of everything{Revelation 22:13 "I am the Alpha and Omega, the first and the last, the beginning and the end"). I turned to a carbonated soft drink that is horrible for my pre-diabetic health and really gave no valuable input into my problems. No matter how many I drink, my problems refused to fade. In fact, exactly the opposite happened. My problems got worse! I have kidney stones, the beginnings of Chrons, and my body truly aches when I wake up in the morning. It can take a full 15 minutes to convince my joints and especially my right foot that they are supposed to be used for movement. However, when I am off Pepsi (as I have been for 7 days now) I wake up almost pain free. I am a solid 100lbs overweight for which Pepsi does not exactly help. You would think that alone would make me want to leave it alone.

You would think so wouldn't you?

So realizing that I am putting Pepsi on a pedestal where it does not belong I have put it down and with God's help am not allowed to even do the "I can only have it when I eat out" rule. I have already had to scold myself for letting the excuses pop into my head. Thankfully and TOTALLY with God's grace I have been able to continue to tell myself "No". So I jokingly tell my friends when I see them "Hello, My name is Melissa and I am 7 days off of Pepsi".

Thanks for Reading,