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Take No Thought For Diet
by Donna L. Watkins
Today’s article is about diet. It begins with a question from one of the subscribers that I know many people struggle with, so I hope it gives you some insight and more peace in relationship to food.
Question from subscriber:
Thanks for your always excellent newsletter, I truly enjoy every one. As a nutrition consultant and one who is always researching the field of alternate health, I come right up against a wall whenever I see this quote from Matthew 6:25:"Take no thought for your life, what ye shall eat, or what ye shall drink; nor yet for your body what ye shall put on."
If we are to take ‘no thought’ about what to eat or drink, then why are most of us trying to find the "ideal" diet for greater health? In the past two decades many tried to lower their fat content. Now it’s carbs and wheat that are to be avoided.
Am I/we all following Jesus’ admonition of taking no thought when we down supplements to make up for the inadequacy of today’s foods? Would one who truly walked with Jesus just eat or drink whatever is convenient, taking "no thought" about nutritional content but *knowing* that all is well because one is following the command of the Master?
Phew! What a topic. I’m not looking for a personal response here, just wondering if you could address this in some future newsletter? Sincerely, Sharon Morrissey
We’ve been in the natural health arena since the late 70’s and as our full-time income since late 80’s. What you describe is definitely something I struggled with and still am challenged with, but do not spend the life-time on it that I did because I’ve set boundaries and made decisions.
Our world is certainly full of pollutants and I do think we need to supplement and fortify our body and eat the best foods we can, but it’s no to be a "god" to us. It is easy to get whole grains, easy to get fresh vegetables, and we can schedule our lives to make home-cooked foods without all the chemicals and flavorings. If need be, there are plenty of prepared convenience foods without the chemicals in the health food store. With a little bit of research and lots of inquiries, you will find a natural food coop in your area or you might find others interested in working a few hours a month to have one. Between 5 or 6 people you can make it happen.
We can eat well by making choices on what our diet will be and then to commit it to the Lord and stick with it. The problem that I see is that most people have so many food addictions that the addiction seems to be the real issue causing the constant thinking of food(s). So, it’s not so much about a "diet" as it is about dealing with the addictions. And that can only be done by the power of the Holy Spirit and a covenant with God.
Elimination diets will always be around because people blame the food for the problem rather than their thoughts, emotions, spiritual condition, or lack of moderation. My way of deciding what is good to eat is to think about what God made for us when He made us and then stick with those things. Lots of fresh foods, whole grains, butter, and cultured dairy products [without all the drugs and factory-farming abuse which I believe to be against God’s instructions for animal husbandry given in His Word].
Sometimes it’s just common sense. Artificial sweetners come with a price. One of the many side effects is depression and what does depression make people do? Eat more or eat less. Eat real food first and foremost.
It’s what we do most that counts – not the weekly exception if we are out and cannot find a place to eat and end up with junk. That can be avoided. But the devil can also deceive you when the exceptions end up being daily. I keep protein bars and water packed for my outings so that I don’t have to eat out at all. I prefer that rather than be tempted with a dessert since sweets would be my weakness. It also allows us to support several Compassion children since rarely eating or drinking out saves enough money to feed these children for a whole month.
Personally, I choose to be a vegetarian because of the condition of the meat supply in our country and the USDA approving cancerous tumors for human consumption along with many other health issues coming from meat. It’s a personal choice made 25 years ago and it’s workable since you can always eat around meat. There are 18 million vegetarians in North America so it doesn’t make you a strange person.
Moderation is the key in everything. I have been a purist for many years and it’s legalism for me to get into rigidity with a specific diet. It separates me from family and friends and I realized that it was more important to God what kind of relationships I had than what kind of food I ate. I can easily skip over meat, but I don’t make a big deal about white flour and sugar and salt and fried foods any more if somebody is serving them to me. Fellowship is more important than food.
I find myself avoiding events that will have food because I know it will not be what I want to eat. That’s when I have to choose what is more important to my Lord? He didn’t organize his social calendar around food.
There’s always the option of fasting which is considered rarely these days. If we truly want to be healthy, fasting a meal here or there is a good choice when there are no healthy options. It’s a great way to dedicate a meal to a spiritual request since prayer with fasting produces great results.
Satan can surely get us into bondage with our diets and that’s so evident with all the fad diets that come and go. Weight loss is about metabolism and overeating. Metabolism is controlled by serotonin which is greatly affected by our thoughts according to Henry Wright’s book, " A More Excellent Way" and other medical research.
Serotonin affects our mood which affects our overeating also. There are supplements to increase serotonin but God offers His spiritual connection to serotonin production and I’ve chosen to deal with it that way with the information in Pastor Wright’s book so that I can keep my thinking in line with the mind of Christ which in turn provides me with better health. So then we are back to thinking again — "take no thought."
It’s the pattern of the enemy to drive us in circles and focus on topics that will be of no importance when we look into the face of Jesus yearning to hear, "Well done, my good and faithful servant."
We were born in a generation when everything seems to be polluted, but the Bible tells us that "if we drink any deadly thing, it shall not hurt us" (Mark 16:18) if our spiritual connection is in line with God and His Word. That doesn’t mean we are to be foolish, but we should not be phobic either. God doesn’t love us less than somebody who grew up in the early 20th century without the heavy pollution and chemicalized farming. He has made provision for us if we simply trust Him and walk in His commandments, we will be blessed in all we do. [Dt. 28 is inspiring to me].
We want to be in control and the more so as the world seems to be out of control, but Jesus says, "Take my yoke upon you and I will give you rest. My burden is easy and light." We just try to complicate it all too much because it’s easier to think and worry than to obey.
I have definitely not arrived on this issue and I’m not the Jesus standard! It’s still a struggle for me to focus on more important things since I have spent so much of my life teaching nutrition and good eating lifestyles, but I know that these bodies are temporal and we need to focus on our spiritual man more than our physical bodies and it will reap for us true health and great wisdom in more areas than just diet!
Romans 14:17 "For the kingdom of God is not meat and drink; but righteousness, and peace, and joy in the Holy Ghost."
Don’t let the devil distract you from walking after Jesus.