Below is a video from the presentation of “Gaining a Healthy Relationship with Food.” For the various counseling options available from this material visit

NOTE: Many people have asked how they can get a copy of the seminar notebook referenced in this verbal presentation. You can request a copy from Summit’s admin over counseling at (please note this is an administrative account; no individual or family counsel is provided through e-mail).

“An Honest Look in the Mirror”
ACKNOWLEDGE the breadth and impact of my sin.

Ganing A Healthy Relationship With Food — Step 2 from The Sam James Institute on Vimeo.

Resource: Daily Food Planning Sheet

Memorize: Ecclesiastes 6:7-9 (ESV), “All the toil of man is for his mouth, yet his appetite is not satisfied. For what advantage has the wise man over the fool? And what does the poor man have who knows how to conduct himself before the living? Better is the sight of the eyes than the wandering of the appetite: this also is vanity and a striving after wind.” As you memorize this passage reflect upon these key points:

  • “All the toil” – Consider all the energy you put into eating or not eating. Is this a good investment of your life?
  • “For his mouth” – This is a common struggle people face. We don’t naturally have a healthy relationship with food.
  • “Appetite is not satisfied” – All of our appetites resist accepting “enough” or take pride in having “control.”
  • “What advantage” – There is no advantage to our appetites being out of control. The result is always injurious.
  • “Vanity… striving after wind” – The things that drive us to misuse food never deliver as they promise.

Teaching Notes

“In order to begin changing your relationship with food, it is important to look at your current behaviors, so you can be honest with yourself about what you are doing and what you need to work on and change (p. 129).” Carolyn Costin & Gwen Schubert Grabb in 8 Keys to Recovery from an Eating Disorder

“Try not to get hung up on the fairness of the genetic hand you may have been dealt (p. 71).” Stephen Arterburn and Linda Mintle in Lose It for Life

“To make matters worse, losing one pound doesn’t feel like it makes any difference at all, even though losing a pound can be difficult to do. The sacrifice-to-reward ratio is out of whack (p. 96).” Gary Thomas in Every Body Matters: Strengthening Your Body to Strengthen Your Soul

“Our bodies are able to tolerate enormous amounts of abuse, but sooner or later they begin to break down (p. 26).” Gregory Jantz in Hope, Help, & Healing for Eating Disorders

“I have had years of people complimenting me for my talent, mind, good personality, and sense of humor, but these new complements were intoxicating! I realize the truth of the statement: ‘Nothing tastes as good as thin feels.’ For me, being thinner qualified the need to be loved and accepted by others (p. 43)… I eventually became convinced that death—at least the look of starvation—was beautiful. I was in to being the ‘beauty,’ the look of the malnourished (p. 44)… I was ‘feeling worse,’ but believing that I was ‘looking better.’ At 90 pounds, my skin was crêpe paper and just hung off from my bones. I didn’t have enough muscle tone or fat to support any kind of shape. Of course, I saw this as ‘fat flab’ (p. 47).” Sheryle Cruse in Thin Enough: My Spiritual Journey through the Living Death of an Eating Disorder

“Anorexics still get hungry, of course, but their fear of fat causes them to control their hunger pangs. And when these natural feelings of hunger are squelched, the anorexic experiences the exhilaration of control. If you are anorexic, you will need to be very honest with yourself about your eating patterns. You may want to congratulate yourself on your willpower over food (p. 20)… As bulimics isolate themselves, food becomes the obvious substitute for social interaction. Food replaces other people as the source of comfort and companionship. Deception and avoidance replace openness and camaraderie (p. 24).” Gregory Jantz in Hope, Help, & Healing for Eating Disorders