If something is legal, it might not be spiritually appropriate.
For years I have been dishonest and disillusioned about my weight, eating habits, and relationship with food. Instead of food being sustenance for my body, I have willingly allowed it to consume me and have power over me.
I have the freedom to do anything, but not everything is helpful. I have the freedom to do anything, but I won’t be controlled by anything. ~ 1 Corinthians 6:12 (Common English Bible)
Paul’s letter to the church (the people) in Corinth actually warned against sexual misconduct and to view themselves as members of Christ’s body. Though I’m not engaging in questionable sexual activity, I don’t always remember my body is adjoined to Christ’s.
Do my actions and behaviors reflect Godliness or worldliness?
Last Sunday, on my way to church, I ate a banana and tossed the peel under a tree on the church’s property. I noticed two squirrels nearby, thinking they would enjoy a dose of potassium, but then I felt a rush of guilt. Immediately, I looked to my left and right, as well as the rearview mirror, afraid someone might have seen me – worried they’d think I littered. I don’t know if squirrels actually eat bananas but, while trying to be helpful, I was afraid of being accused of wrongdoing.
Lately, I’ve done well controlling food cravings, but that hasn’t always been the case. I used to eat whether I was mad, sad, or glad and I loved eating alone. There were no eyes watching me and no one asked if my eating was appropriate. Emotional and bored eating were second nature … until regret set in and an entire bag of chips was gone.
My intentions were good with the banana peel and squirrels, but I can’t say the same about standing in front of the refrigerator or pantry door.
What if, instead of looking around and being afraid of getting caught, I look up and ask, “Is this appropriate?”
When you eat or drink or do anything else, always do it to honor God. ~ 1 Corinthians 10:31 (Contemporary English Version)
Do I eat to honor God or satisfy cravings?
Do I exercise to strengthen God’s temple or to check an item off my to-do list?
The way I feed my body, strengthen my body, and use my body should communicate to everyone that God is my treasure.
Sweet friend, if you are struggling to bear the fruit of self-control, you are not alone. Your body and mind are important to God. Most importantly, YOU MATTER TO GOD.
Embrace what is good and spiritually pleasing. Avoid what consumes or dishonors you.