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Friday, September 17, 2010

Book Review: Women, Food & God by Geneen Roth

This is one of Oprah's people. She's been on her show a couple of times and my mom told me about it, so I thought I'd try the book.

The premise of the book is good. It's all about women and their relationship to food. And I think her whole point is when we're eating we don't really stop to think about our food or why we're eating. A lot of us eat to medicate how we're really feeling. Case in point, I had two girls ask me today, "Does cake make everything better or does it just make things feel better?" Wise little teenagers. So she talks about all the conferences she's done and the self-discovery that's happened there about the women who used to binge eat (and I mean binge) and then how they discover why they were really doing it and how they're able to let it go. She also tells her own story with food which is pretty intense.

I think one of the best points she talks about is that we eat to escape pain because we're too afraid to feel what we're really feeling. I think we all do that with food or something. I know I do. I'm terrified of hurting. I try to avoid it at all costs. Even though I really want emotional and spiritual health more than most things, I have a hard time working through the painful stuff. It's hard for me to sit in the pain. But Ms. Roth talks about how we eat to numb because we're afraid that if we let ourselves feel what we're really feeling, it will annihilate us, overcome and consume us. I know I've felt that before.

So she tells people to sit and let the pain come and face it instead of eating it away. And I totally agree with that. It's hard, but worth it.

The parts of the book I have a hard time with are the fact that she doesn't give any place for the pain to go and her version of God and my God are not the same thing. I didn't really expect them to be, but when you're dealing with monumental emotional pain, you need God to be God, solid, trustworthy, rock, gentle, humble, Savior that can take your pain because He's already suffered to save you from all sin and pain.

So if I could add something to the book, and I can, because this is my blog, I would say, sit and think about how you're really feeling next time you're eating because you're sad, angry, depressed, anxious, worried, afraid...And let it come. And enter into God's Presence. And ask Him to be there with you. It's one thing to let the pain come and sit there and hurt. It's completely different to hurt in His Presence. And then when you've let it all come out, give it to Him, every last ounce of fear or grief. He will take it and fill you up with His love and truth.

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