The Issue of Control in Eating Disorder Recovery

The desire for control of one’s job, emotions, schedule, health or even family members sometimes surfaces in a desire to control food intake or even in other food related behaviors. Control is a common underlying struggle for those who suffer with eating disorders.

This issue of control need not keep one bound to an eating disorder, though. There is One who can be trusted to take control, to be in charge. Now for some encouragement on allowing God to be in control.

Letting go of control is a process and one may need to make many attempts at it or break it down into smaller steps. While this is a tough part of eating disorder recovery, it can be done. One of the keys to get started is to meditate on His love and His promises. Below are some scriptures to help in that regard.

God loves everyone the same, and each person is special to Him. In fact, in Zeph. 3:17, it even says that He takes delight in His children. “The Lord your God is with you, he is mighty to save. He will take great delight in you. He will quiet you with his love. He will rejoice over you with singing.” Since He takes delight in those He created, can’t He be trusted to guide our lives? Rom. 8:38, 39 proclaims God’s eternal love. “For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.” Can a God who doesn’t let anything come in the way of His love for His children be trusted?

Since God loves everyone so deeply, He certainly has our best interest at heart. This is demonstrated in Jeremiah 29:11. “‘For I know the plans I have for you;’ declares the Lord, ‘plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.'”

Meditating on verses that proclaim God’s love and focusing on scriptures that declare His promises will provide a foundation for letting go of control. Regardless of the area where control is a problem, God’s love and promises apply. Breaking free of the determination to control and trusting God to take control instead is freeing and can provide a strong foundation in Christian eating disorder recovery.