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Sunday, February 03 2013

After reading my What the Bible Says about Healthy Living Cookbook, Nicole Ayers contacted me to ask how she might spread the word about the companion study guide she wrote. Although we have never met face-to-face, I consider her one of my close virtual foodie friends. Read my Q&A with her and find out how you can be blessed and bless others through her story.

Q: What caused you to read Dr. Russell’s book?
My husband actually had a copy of What the Bible Says About Healthy Living from long ago. I finally got around to reading it when I realized I needed to make some lifestyle changes for my health. I was about 30 pounds overweight, with high cholesterol and triglycerides. My doctor prescribed Tricor for me: since I was not a "couch potato who ate fried chicken every day," she concluded my condition must be hereditary. I was determined that I would not be 23 years old and taking medication for the rest of my life.

Q: How did reading it impact you?
I read Dr. Russell's book (many, many times now), and my husband claims he created a monster! Healthy living has become a passion for me. Really, I've simply tried to take what I learned and apply it to everyday choices about health and how I care for my body. I'm far from perfect, but I've drastically changed my eating habits, and I continually try to improve. Oh, I've lost nearly 40 pounds and take zero meds, thanks to healthy diet and regular exercise.

Q: Why did you write the study guide?
I was part of a women's Bible study group at my church, and our leader asked me to facilitate a series on health. I knew I wanted to use Dr. Russell's book, because he did such a good job connecting Scriptural principles with real-life food/health choices. There was not a study guide out I wrote one!

Q: Did you ever use it? Any fruit?
Yes, we did an 8-week class with the ladies, and I believe people really learned a lot. We had a lot of good feedback about people making better health choices. Again, it's not about going through the study once and coming out perfect (nothing in the Bible works like that, eh?), but it's a learning and improving process.

Q: What are you pouring yourself into now?
I've spent most of this past year working on a project called "Love Gives On" (website) or LoveGivesOn (on Facebook), aimed at helping people find healing through charity and actively remembering a lost loved one. When my Mom died last year, I felt inspired to run an ultramarathon (my first) in memory of her, to raise money for All the King's Horses Children's Ranch in Benson, AZ, a charity dear to her heart. I have focused my efforts on training for this 50k race (which is the end of February), including running my first full marathon as a training run, and spreading the word about the fundraiser.

When my big race is complete I plan to switch my focus to the outreach aspect of this project: sharing my journey and the healing I've found, hopefully helping others who have experienced loss to gain healing and strength as well: “Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of compassion and the God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our troubles, so that we can comfort those in any trouble with the comfort we ourselves have received from God.” (2 Cor 1:3-4 NIV)

Q: Any parting comments you would like to share?
I've been amazed at what can happen when (1) God inspires an idea, (2) you set a very lofty goal, (3) you make a plan and discipline yourself to work toward that goal, and (4) you surround yourself with family and friends who will support you along the way. I can't believe I'm about to run an ultramarathon. I'm humbled that I've been able to help raise money for abused and neglected children at a ranch in Arizona. I'm so thankful for the bonds that have been formed and strengthened along the way. And my heart is healing. To God alone be the glory!
For a free copy of Nicole’s wonderful study guide, click here. If you enjoy it, consider visiting her website and making a donation!

Posted by: Hope Egan AT 06:00 pm   |  Permalink   |  0 Comments  |  Email

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