My husband has recently been on a mission to get healthier and lose some weight that he had gained after his kidney transplant almost 10 years ago; he’s doing an amazing job and is already down nearly 20 pounds in 2 months through changing his diet and adding in exercise. He’s a man who loves his food bursting with flavor and oozing with condiments and not much thought was previously put into what makes a healthy diet as long as it tasted amazing. It was not atypical for him to decline a meal I’d make for the family and then run out to grab something “better tasting” from a restaurant in town. The scale progressively crept upwards, and before long, he was over 50 pounds heavier than when we first met and didn’t realize how crummy he felt.
Then one day, the angels sang and the sun shined down upon him, and much like the scales fell off of Paul’s eyes and he could see again after being struck blind on the road to Damascus, my husband’s eyes were opened to the fact that he was idolizing food. An idol is anything you make your god and allow to control you. We allow our idols to change the way we think and guide our emotions and desires. They can be anything, really; money, sex, status, recognition, comfort, you name it. For Jon, food controlled him. He was only satisfied with certain tastes and quantities of food. Instead of eating food to nourish him and fuel his body to keep it humming along and working hard, he ate strictly for pleasure.
God knit our bodies together wonderfully. He made our bodies to thrive off of whole, nutritious foods and to feel good and function well after eating them. Ever feel miserable after being a glutton at Thanksgiving dinner? Or feel foggy after a mid day sugar crash? Our bodies weren’t designed to eat that way, and in turn, our bodies give us signals that tell us as much. When we continually ignore those signals, we lead ourselves down a slippery slope to disease and illness. Check out this article on the effects of prolonged high blood sugar.
Don’t hear me say you shouldn’t enjoy your food! God gave us taste buds and delicious foods for a reason—to bring pleasure in and appreciation for what God created. But if this leads to idolatry of food instead of praise for God, we’ve gone down the wrong path.
Is food controlling you? Are you finding your comfort and satisfaction in things that may taste good but are wreaking havoc inside your body? You don’t have to pull yourself up by your boot straps and go it alone in your food freedom journey. God’s power is perfected in our weakness (2 Cor. 12:10) and goodness do we have weaknesses as imperfect humans. In 1 John 5:21, John implores us to stay away from our idols. How do we do this successfully when we’ve failed time and time again? When we can’t seem to keep our hands out of the cookie jar? Mack Styles says it best: “kill the idols in your life by making Christ your life.”
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