Mindfully Eating

Written on

October 29, 2018

Gluten-free, Dairy-free, Nut-free . . . Low fat, fat free . . . Protein, Carbs, Antioxidants . . .

Lately, as I am mindfully, intentionally trying to make “a million little decisions,” (see my last post) I find myself reading more and more nutritional labels on just about everything. I even find myself paying attention to the calorie count on menus in restaurants.

The idea of “going on a diet” has never been appealing to me. I mean, does it really appeal to anyone?! If you tell me I can’t eat something, that something becomes the only thing I want. Besides, diets just don’t seem practical for long-term, real-life living.

So, for me, I am trying to approach my food decisions with the idea of moderation. Sodas and sweets but smaller portions and only so much. Bread and pasta but less of it. Small protein-packed snacks often because my husband and daughters can tell you I am not at all pretty or the least bit kind when I am “hangry.”

Saturday, for example, I knew my husband and I would have a date night. Dinner would be out and without kids. I decided to eat a smarter breakfast and then a salad for lunch. At dinner I didn’t think twice when we ordered cheesy naan with our Indian food entrees.

Food – what I eat, how and when I eat it – has now consistently become something that requires much more thought and planning and consideration. I would even say that this kind of intentionality has become habitual.

I was contemplating this new “hobby” of mine when I came across this quote on Instagram about Bible reading:

“This means taking in his words at a more reflective and enjoyable (you might even say ‘leisurely’) pace – rather than rushing through to cover as much ground as possible. I remind myself that the goal is to find food for my soul . . . not check reading plan boxes and just avail my mind of additional biblical data. Call it ‘eating-mindfully’ . . . whatever you call it, finding a slower pace goes hand in hand with faithfully gathering a day’s portion.” -David Mathis, (Desiring God, 9-2-18)

This reminded me of the Israelites that were to only gather one day’s portion of manna as they were wandering in the desert. In the book of Deuteronomy, Moses explains that the reason for the manna and its portion restrictions, were to teach God’s people to know that man does not live by bread alone, but by every word that comes from the mouth of the Lord. (Duet. 8:3)
Like the Israelites, I need a daily portion and I need it to LIVE. What kind of portion am I surviving on?
Living on this side of the cross and at this point in HIStory, we have the Word of God conveniently wrapped and packaged for us in all kinds of ways. However, with all its ease and accessibility, I take it for granted and still not “eat” it wisely. I believe we still need to read the labels, do some research and make sure we are getting quality stuff when we study God’s Word. 
Just because the packaging is pretty or the “Christian” you know on Facebook has given her endorsement, it may not be solid in it’s theology. Anything out there professing to be Godly needs to measured against the Word of God itself – we can’t settle for anything else. 
AND – confession time- I need to make sure when I am taking in God’s Word that I am studying it on a level that will challenge me. I need to be chewing on a passage that is hard for me to understand or difficult for me to apply. I need this solid food to grow. 
Didn’t Paul write about believers needing more than milk? I like milk. I am used to milk. It’s a comfort food for me and makes me feel good – especially with hot, fresh from the oven chocolate-chip cookies! 
The question for me is how am I approaching God’s Word? Is my Bible reading only motivated by my desire to scratch something else off my to-do list? Am I only reading it to prep for Bible study I am teaching? Or am I reading it, searching in it, for what it is that God wants to speak to my soul today?
Not having that kind of Bible reading experience you want? Join me in my prayer that God will open our eyes to see and consume His Word the way He intends for us. I believe His Word in John where He tells us we don’t have because we don’t ask AND that if we seek Him we will find Him. 
Why do I believe these things? I read it -over and over again – in His Word until it finally sinks in and I am able to digest in a way that continues to do my heart good . . . 
Besides if I am going to use so much brain power and time focused on the physical food I am putting into my physical body, I think it is time to devote some additional brain power and time to focus on what I am feeding my soul. How about you?

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