My parents recently visited from Indiana. They stayed about a week. I was just coming off what I thought was a flu bug. Turns out it was something a little different, but either way, I wasn’t full strength back to eating a lot when they arrived.
Usually when they visit, we’re pretty relaxed on the food end of things. I personally don’t give in to much of the sweet stuff we tend to have when they’re here. I’m not above snitching, mind you, but for the most part I’ve gotten the sugar-monster wrestled down enough to control my cheats and not let them control me. (Not cuz I’m a food saint, but because I’m diabetic and control my sugar with food instead of meds).
I was mostly feeling good while they were here except for the not-being-able-to-eat-much lingering for a few days..
As the week went on, I began to notice that a curious thing was happening. I was staying connected to the Lord much easier than when they’re usually here. I’m not saying I leave the Lord when my fam is around, but you know how it is when things are really busy—time with the Lord kinda gets tucked away as you relax into people. Again, not saying that’s right or wrong. Just is.
In thinking on it, Daniel (in the Bible) came to mind when he was ordered to eat the King’s “choice” food. He wanted to honor God’s thought about food and follow what was written in scripture. Indeed, it says he was purposed in his heart to do that.
So he asked the guy in charge for a time of proving that God’s ways of eating would not harm his performance for the King. And God honored Daniel’s heart to honor Him and made him even more healthy than those eating the King’s “choice” food. Which, in turn, made Daniel even closer in friendship with God.
Same thing seemed to happen here to me when life wasn’t focused on enjoying the “choice” food.
I thought too of something I read about Keith Green a long time ago. He was a Christian musician whose writings and ministry impacted a lot of folks in my generation. He was struggling spiritually at one point and in talking to his friend and mentor about it, the friend counseled him to look at his undisciplined habits, including eating whenever and whatever he wanted to (like downing a half gal of ice cream at a time). He agreed to try, and everything shifted spiritually for him.
Now, I’m NOT saying you can’t enjoy food… or the peeps around you. You can totally make this legalistic and full of rules… and that’s not at all what I’m trying to spit out here. There are times when feasting and celebrating with food is wholly appropriate.
However, I do see that there IS a spiritual connection between what we allow ourselves to indulge in food-wise—and our closeness to the Lord. The two are directly related.
I don’t know yet what God will bring this out to look like in my life. However, I do know I wish to continue being mindful of the dots he’s connecting for me between the two and let him work his thoughts into me on it. What about you..?
Do you have any thoughts? I’d love to hear them. You can share in the comments below.
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