Life must be better-than-average at this moment in time, because at the top of my consciousness is the “problem” of giving up something for Lent. I intend to avoid food products with added sugar.
I love Necco Wafers and cotton candy and chocolate cake and Atomic Fireballs, and pralines, and…well, you get the picture.
Two years ago, I gave up sugar for Lent and did fairly well. My goal was to make a permanent reduction in my sugar consumption, and it worked…for a couple of weeks after Easter. Soon, I was back to my old habits, and I had to face the hard, cold fact that I exert little self-control when it comes to sugary products.
After the morning resolve to eat less sugar, later in the day, I often find myself very “foodhappy” but totally disgusted at my weakness for eating many cookies or something similar and not even realizing it as I eat. This is a terrible habit. Some might call it gluttony!
Plus, clearly, too much sugar consumption exacerbates a long list of medical problems. In true “geek-like” fashion, I even keep a list of them on our fridge to remind me of what I am doing to my body.
Thus, in preparation for Lent, and hopefully always, today I started - once again - to cut back on my sugary food consumption. Success is going to require some serious prayer time and conscious effort to do what is best for my physical self.
I also remembered there was something in the Bible about not doing harm to one’s body, so a little research ensued. What I found may or may not apply to my jumbo box of Raisinettes (big shock), but it is food (!) for thought.
Twenty years or so after Jesus was crucified, Paul wrote letters to the Christian Corinthians in which he answered their questions, examined what about their beliefs was right or wrong, and so forth.
In I Corinthians 6:19-20, Paul tells the Corinthians that their bodies are temples of the Holy Spirit which were bought with a price. Thus, the Corinthians must glorify God with their bodies.
Paul continues about various similar topics until he gets to a discussion of what kind of food is acceptable to eat…almost anything, evidently, as long as it was not meant as part of idol worship…and Paul remarks in I Corinthians 10:31, “So whether you eat or drink, or whatever you do, do it all for the glory of God” (NIV).
That wording stopped me in my tracks. My sugary food habit certainly does NOT reflect the glory of God. It reflects only my greedy desire for instant gratification. Perhaps I need another sign on the refrigerator.
And by the way, if you see me at church, feel free to ask me if I’m still eating for the glory of God.
Written by Becky
The 12:12 Project is sponsored by Katy First United Methodist Church.