I am not a failure

May 22, 2012

So, it occurred to me that a few days ago was the 2 year anniversary of my first journey through losing weight.  I looked back through my binder and on 5/20/2010 I started the Grace and Strength Diet protocol.  So I started thinking, “I wonder how well I’m doing this time versus last time.” In case you don’t know this about me, I’m a little competitive. So I thought, I would try to compete with my2010 self to get this weight off.  But I was sad to see that I’m not doing as well this time.  2010 Amy is winning and 2012 Amy is lagging!

I’ve been on the protocol for 28 days, that’s 4 weeks folks. At a pound a day average I should have lost 28 pounds by now.  2010 Amy had lost 26.4 pounds by day 28. 2012 Amy has only lost 19.  When I read that for a brief second I felt like a failure.  That little voice started to creep into my head, telling me that it’s not going to happen this time; that I’m going to fail.  Then I realized something: Failures don’t lose 19 pounds in 28 days; failures don’t lose 1 pound in 28 days; to fail something means to fall short of succeeding at it; well I am succeeding at it. To fail means to lose strength or become weak; well in Him I’m as strong as ever! To fail means to become deficient or insufficient; well that can never happen because where I end – He begins; where I lack – he supplies; where I am insufficient – He is MORE than sufficient to meet my needs.

It’s so different for me this time with Josiah and touring right off the bat and working. 2010 Amy had no baby and no shows for the first 6 weeks of the diet, so I could focus all my energy on losing weight.  2012 Amy is crazy busy! I work (3-4 days a week), I tour (did I tell you I’m going to Turkey this weekend?), I have Josiah (24/7 my cutey needy boy), I’m a youth pastor (planning 3 fundraisers and a summer camp), I’m a worship leader (planning a summer worship conference), oh yeah, and I’m trying to lose 100 pounds.  I’m a little tired just writing that!

One thing I learned the first time around was to give myself a break.  See, here’s where I’ve changed: 2010 Amy would have let those failure thoughts marinate for hours, maybe even days.  She would have let them take her into a big cheat, possibly even quitting.  She would have looked in the mirror and cried, “What is wrong with me??” But 2012 Amy knows who’s she is.  I know God’s love for me is unchanging whether I lose 19 pounds or 119. And know that I am beautiful even if I choose to not lose another ounce.  2012 Amy deserves a break because I’m doing everything I can, in my power to succeed.  That doesn’t mean I always make the right choice. Let’s not talk about the slice of pizza I had last night, then Cyndi called me 5 minutes later and I had to confess.  It’s like the Holy Spirit told her to call me before I ate another piece, which I was contemplating because I was tired and lazy and didn’t feel like cooking. But I have to choose every day if I want this for myself and how hard I’m willing to work at it.  And I know that God will meet me there. He will do something like send Cyndi to call me right when I’m about to fall.  I don’t consider eating that slice of pizza a big mistake. But the thoughts that came after it like, “Well, now I’ve screwed up, I might as well eat a bunch and enjoy it,”  those were mistakes and if she hadn’t called when she did I probably would have indulged a lot more.  I know that God will be with me in Turkey and not just for my eating schedule, but to keep us safe and bless the work we’re doing there.

If you are someone who constantly beats themselves up for little mistakes or not succeeding as well as you thought you would I want to encourage you today.  You are not a failure.  Just get up, brush off yesterday and take one step forward.  Some days that’s all we can do, and that’s okay. Some days you just gotta stay where you are, and that’s okay too.  And if you happen to be someone who’s realized that they moved backwards, that’s okay too. It’s not the end of the world.  You still have time to make a change.

Look at me. I’m on my second round of this because I ate like a crazy person when I was pregnant. And that’s okay too.  But I’m making a change.




  1. YOU are sincerely NO failure…YOU are such an amazing inspiration and gift to soooooo many women around the world. I speak blessings on both you and the boys on your special project in Turkey, may it be all God has in store for it!!
    And if I am prompted to divinely call you, what is the time difference?? LOL Just kidding…you go in peace and enjoy this awesome experience!!
    p.s. I don’t think there is any pizza in Turkey 😉

  2. Thanks for this Amy. The 2010 you inspired me to join Grace and Strength. Angie linked to your blog one day and when I found it I went all the way to the beginning and read the whole entire thing. Then I called Cyndi and joined.

    I did amazing the first month. I something like 30.5 pounds. I didn’t do as well in the subsequent months. I would lose and gain the same weight over and over. I blogged about it for a while, but I felt like I was letting Cyndi down because I wasn’t doing well so I just quit blogging about it. (Yes, I realize how ridiculous that thought is!!) I was having some major financial issues and couldn’t afford to go forward on the program. When I stopped protocol I had lost around 75 pounds. I felt so defeated and discouraged that I quickly gained 15 pounds back. I’ve been holding at that number since February, gaining a pound or two and then losing it again.

    I have been wallowing in shame because I’ve come so far but I still have another 60 pounds to lose. I’ve wanted to start again so many times but I just can’t make myself do it. I know that it is possible to lose the weight, even without the hcg, but I just can’t get committed to it.

    Thanks for your honesty here. It helped me so much before and I know it will help again. I feel like I have a crazy life and schedule, and I do, but compared to your’s it’s nothing. I can do this. And so can you. I’ll be praying for you and following along.

  3. Blessings to you for keeping us in the loop during your progress. I too had lost 80 pounds, then gained a wee bit back again, and now have 100 pounds to lose, You words are an inspiration to me, so thank you for sharing!!!!.(I say having eaten at Taco Bell for dinner…. ugh!) Anyway, time for me to get back on track. Tried to kill myself last week and one of the things I actually said to the firefighter/EMT’s was that they, like the rest of the world, don’t like to help fat people. I would say it was the overdose talking, but years of abuse have led me to this conclusion. I amm however, blessed to be a lead singer in a band; whose niche is singing Christian jazz (originals) for those who are in assisted nursing facilities. Considering the audience, I don’t feel judgement in that public arena. Keep your courage! You really are a beautiful woman and deserve much happiness, and are a huge blessing through your ministry.

  4. Amy, like Cathy said, reading your blog posts inspired me to joing G&S and it was a great experience. I hit my goal and slowly put some of the weight back on. But I know how and I know why. And it was due to choices I made. Doesn’t make it easier to swallow but at least I own it. Thanks for the reminder (again) that I cannot do this in my own strength. I love your honesty and your sense of humor about life and it inspires me to keep going. You CAN do this. I CAN do this. I had recently mentioned to my daughter that for the past few years I’ve wanted to start jogging but I just never did. God finally put it on my heart that it was fear stopping me. What if I couldn’t do it? What if I couldn’t run a mile the first time out? (And why would I think that I could do that, having never run before?!) Anyway, a couple girls at work invited me to run with them. I was terrified and didn’t want to do it but I did. It wasn’t fast, it wasn’t pretty, but I did it. 2 miles. I finished. And that in itself is a victory.

  5. The only failures are those who reject God’s grace through salvation.

    Keep working on it!!!

  6. You are such an inspiration!!!! Thank you for your honesty, and for sharing!!! Will be praying for you!!

  7. You are such an inspiration!!! Thank you for sharing, and I will be praying for you!!!

  8. Amy,
    I want to start by saying I love the music ministry of Selah. God is blessing many of us through you. I wanted to find out more about your music so Googled you and low & behold ran across your blog! This is my 1st experience with blogging & I really like it! How great to read your blog and the replys of others and know I don’t struggle alone. The Lord knows of my struggles, disappointments & pain & I believe he led me to you. ALL my life I have struggled with being overweight and have hated myself for a long time. I’ve tried every diet out there but have never heard of the Grace & Strength Diet. I like the fact that it is faith based. I was on a HCG program before (very restrictive) and lost 45 pounds in 8 wks but didn’t keep it off and am right back where I was. I’m praying this program will be something that I can realistically implement in my life always. Thank you for helping & encouraging us with your truth. I will keep you posted on my journey.

  9. Hi Amy, today was the first time I watch your testimony and you singing I look to you. I know I a bit late on that lol. But it really hit hard.
    Last week I went to see my diet doctor after putting it off for a year to, only to find out that I had gained all the 20lbs I had lost back on. I was really down but I didn’t tell anyone, the doctor gave me some medication to take to help my weight loss and i felt like a failure as if I couldn’t lose the weight.
    But see the video today and watching your blog you have given me a second hope and made me realized I have never asked God to help me lose weight and we our meant to do all things as on to Him.

    Thank you again
    God’s blessings

  10. Hi Amy
    I know exacately how you feel. I lost 107 pounds in 2004/05 and then five months later fell pregnany with my little girl. 8 months after she was born I fell pregnant with my little boy. I ended up 5 stones overweight again.. I battled and was miserable for 4 years to try and get back to goal and not to feel a failure. Then I look at my children, God’s best blessing in my life and i think it’s not their fault, I made choices… At easter I made the choice to get healthier again so I can beat my little boy in a race! I’ve lost nearly 40 pounds and an over halfway.. It’s harder this time but in NO WAY AM I A FAILURE! You will get there too…
    Love Sarah

  11. Hi Amy,
    I was at your concert tonight at Marantha and was encouraged by the worship. I do like it when you sing “Bless the Broken Road.”

    I don’t know when you will see this but I am an RN and had worked OB for years and can tell you that because you are losing weight after a pregnancy you will loose differently this time than before you were pregnant. Even though Josiah is 4 months you have just left the “Fourth Trimester” and he has just finished a growth spurt. If you are nursing your body will lose weight more slowly because God designed us to feed our babies for two years and that is how our body works. Even if you are not breast feeding. The last 10 to 15 pounds may not come off until Josiah is a year old because if there was a famine our body holds the fat to make milk to keep our child alive. Our body does not know about formula, worship leading, or being a youth pastor.

    So the fact you have lost 19 pounds in 28 days is WONDERFUL! Now keep going you can do it!

  12. Hi Amy! Thank you for your comments about failure. I am a homeschool mom of two teens and feel like a failure at it and parenting. I too beat myself up frequently but am preaching the Gospel to myself and reminding myself of God’s truths. Thanks for the reminder we are NOT failures and to continue depending on Him for our strength.

  13. You are an inspiration Amy. I read this post and think of you in light of 1 Peter 2:9 – “But you are A CHOSEN RACE, A royal PRIESTHOOD, A HOLY NATION, A PEOPLE FOR God’s OWN POSSESSION, so that you may proclaim the excellencies of Him who has called you out of darkness into His marvelous light;”

    You have a beautiful voice, this platform allows you to proclaim His excellencies. He CHOSE you in His perfect sovereignty to walk this specific road. By this you are blessed…in James 1:2…count it all joy! And know that there are those who are truly inspired. Perhaps there are some who are entirely rescued (through Him) by your story!

  14. You are a inspiration to many. Keep on, keeping on! God bless! AJN

  15. Amy, I attend a small church in Portland, Oregon with my wonderful husband and daughter. I want you to know that so much of your music inspires me and speaks to me like no other artist. We have done much of your music as specials and are soon going to do I Turn to You, You Deliver Me and I Look to You. Thank you for sharing your gift. Keep singing, writing, and blessing the world!

  16. Thank you for writing, Amy. Your baby son is beautiful! Congratulations, and God bless you. I love your song “Unredeemed.” I’m hoping it will help one of my brothers — I intend to share it with him.

  17. you are beautiful, inside and out. Never, ever forget that. Be kind to yourself. That body just gave birth…what a miracle, what power it has! Everything changes after that. I’ll say it again, be kind to yourself. We shall get our perfect bodies someday, in the meantime, we have to remember we are already perfect in His eyes.

  18. Amy,
    I just attended my first Women of Faith event at AA Center in Dallas, TX. You guys were AWESOME. your voice gave me chills. How wonderful a gift you have been given and thank you so much for sharing it with me and everyone else. I read your above post and you know what i never saw Amy the body, I heard AMY the beautiful voice. I am also intrigued about this Grace and Strength diet you speak of. Can you elaborate?
    I bought your CD’s and I Turn To You.. makes me absolutely cry like a baby. You have a powerful voice and I love it and wish I could do that. Please don’t stop. I look forward to hearing you guys in person again..
    Peggy Senter-Villagomez
    Denton, TEXAS

  19. Amy! Thank you. I like how you’re so open about your feelings of failure. I struggle in a different area – not weight- but I can still relate with you very much. I’ll be praying for you. You’ve encouraged me. God bless you and your baby and husband.

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