Just because something is technically legal doesn't mean that it's spiritually appropriate. If I went around doing whatever I thought I could get by with, I'd be a slave to my whims. You know the old saying, "First you eat to live, and then you live to eat"? Well, it may be true that the body is only a temporary thing, but that's no excuse for stuffing your body
with food, or indulging it with sex. Since the Master honors you with a body, honor him with your body! 1 Cor 6:12-13 (MSG)
Do you not know that your bodies are temples of the Holy Spirit, who is in you, whom you have received from God? You are not your own; you were bought at a price. Therefore honor God with your bodies. 1 Cor 6:19-20
From what I can see, the cycle of gaining weight and dieting, gaining weight and dieting is not how God meant us to behave towards His gift of food. Rather, He meant us to use food to love our bodies. Eating too little, too much, too quickly, or without care for the quality of the food causes food to no longer be of full benefit to us. When we overeat, it is no longer loving ourselves and our relationship with food takes on an addictive quality. It's there to numb us from reality. When we diet, it's almost like medieval self-flagellation. We think that the only way to get over our addiction is to punish ourselves until we've made a habit of behaving. What message does that ssend to our bodies, to our subconscious? That we hate ourselves. That there's something wrong with us. That food is a source of bad feelings, of guilt and shame. Do either extremes speak of health and love towards our bodies or thankfulness for the experience of food?
Instead, let us eat this way:
- Giving thanks. Not only in an opening blessing, but in your uplifted heart.
- Preparing and cleaning up after your food with love and awareness.
- Choosing food that instills health.
- Indulging in sweets, alcohol, and heavily fatty foods in moderation, with an attitude of celebration.
- Not using foods as an escape, but rather working through our pain in self-building ways.
- Eating when we are hungry, and stopping when we are not, careful to not stuff ourselves.
- Not eating to clean our plate, nor our children's. Eating to be filled, and if it's not possible to store the extras, throw them out.
- Listening to our bodies. What do they need right now? Could they really use some protein, or are they craving the vitamins in a salad? Go through the options. Our bodies will tell us what we "feel like" eating.
- Eating slowly, taking the time to chew. Put aside time for eating, make it a priority.
- Eating with others as much as possible. Let it be a time to meaningfully connect with those around us. Talk! Laugh! Savor our relationships.
Keep in mind that I am not God (of this I am certain), and these are not the ten commandments of eating. Don't stress! Relax. Eating is
supposed to be awesome.