God and nutrition pt I: Denying one’s self for the Spirit’s sake of working through us

god_nutrition_facts_mug

There is nothing to be lost by eating healthy unless it becomes idolized and placed above God. Increasing our health should be a natural inclination upon reading scripture (1 Corinthians 6:19-20), but if we have put our health and well being before Him, we may as well eat bacon, cupcakes, and grease.

  1. Walking with the Spirit’s best interest

1 Corinthians 6:19-20 says “Or do you not know that your body is the temple of the Holy Spirit who is in you, whom you have from God, and you are not your own? For you were bought at a price; therefore, glorify God in your body and in your spirit, which are God’s.” 

What do we have to lose for eating healthily? Many friends of mine have become defensive to me upon this; in a way, they are defending their upbringing, tastebud satisfaction, and default way of eating. Galatians 5:16-17 speaks against this. “So I say, walk by the Spirit, and you will not gratify the desires of the flesh. For the flesh desires what is contrary to the Spirit, and the Spirit what is contrary to the flesh. They are in conflict with each other, so that you are not to do whatever you want.” We don’t want to give up everything to God, and a lot of us make eating one of those things. Then we are reminded of Luke 14:33 “…whoever of you who does not forsake all that he has cannot be my disciple.” We need to recognize ourselves clinging onto certain things in our lives that we can ‘get away’ with keeping around.

Obviously, our default reaction is to give up less to God while still giving up more; to see how close we can get from sinning without actually sinning so that it doesn’t count. We need to first realize that God wants our mindset to change to a further pursuing of Him(Matthew 6:33). Instead of seeing how close we can get to the line, seeing how close we can get in our relationship with Jesus, through prayer, The Bible, fellowship, etc., and we will find that we’ll naturally want to stay away from that line(John 3:30). We need to recognize ourselves clinging onto certain things in our lives that we can ‘get away with’. Ultimately, all of us want to think that we have given God every part of our lives; but when God breaks us down from our pride, we realize our sin and the many things that we have yet to give to Him.

2. Taking up our cross with food, daily

Luke 9:23-24 says to deny ourselves and take up our cross daily. What better way to deny our flesh than to make a conscious decision (at least) 3 times a day to do so? Of course we all eat. Otherwise we wouldn’t be alive. As Jesus longs to be a part of our entire day, rather than only be in an hour of it set apart for Him, so He longs for us to make everything that we do glorify Him, make us decrease, and Him increase. Biblical nutrition is a way for us to deny ourselves in a sort of ‘fast’ on a consistent basis in every day of our lives. I participated in a 30 hour famine with Family in Christ youth group this past weekend and told the students that their fast doesn’t have to only be once a year, it can be every day! It has helped me personally grow in a deeper relationship with Jesus as I now am more aware of things my flesh desires that I can put before God and admit I am selfish with.

Obviously, in accordance with Galatians 5:16-17, this applies to more than eating. Eating healthy can be a stepping stone in this process of finding out ways to deny ourselves and make God increase and our fleshly, selfish desires decrease.

3. The Biblical Aspect

So what does the Bible say about nutrition? There are many accounts of discovery in nutrition of the Bible.

Daniel 1: Daniel and his friends went against the norm of eating meat and delicacies in jail and were then blessed by God for doing so. Additionally, scripture says they appeared more healthy than the other inmates.

-Wouldn’t God want our body to be at its best so that His Spirit could better work through us?

Exodus 15:26 says “If you will listen carefully to the Lord your God and do what He considers right, if you pay attention to His commands and obey all His laws, I will never make you suffer any of the diseases I made the Egyptians suffer, because I am the Lord who heals you.” 

-Obviously, we must make a conscious effort to do so. You’ll soon find, however, that once you realize the energy you have, you will have to make a conscious effort to eat unhealthily.

You’ll notice I didn’t capitalize nutrition in the title of this post-for good reason. A lot of good fellowship can be shared over a piece of pepperoni pizza and we can’t sacrifice opportunities of evangelism and fellowship by offending people with our dietary habits or not relating to them because of it. (Romans 14:15-21)&(1 Corinthians 9:22: To the weak I became weak, to win the weak. I have become all things to all men so that by all possible means I might save some.)(Luke 10:8: Whatever city you enter, and they receive you, eat such things as are set before you)

The time in my life in which my blood pressure was lowest was in spending time in fellowship with my cousin in Oklahoma, and I ate terribly! But there is an aspect of social health the God blesses us in. (Matthew 22:36-40) Truly, if we are to love our neighbor as ourselves, we must have an aspect of love for ourselves, not a selfish one, but one that is glorifying in helping feed God’s vessel for His Spirit (1 Corinthians 6:19-20) so that it has more energy and is more able to serve Him. Obviously, we won’t be able to become perfect vessels, but we can at least take small steps to do so such as this one.

4.               What we can we do?

So what are some foods we can eat? Well here’s a couple easy ones that are in accordance with The Holy Bible:

Genesis 1:29 (a bread)

Ezekial 4:9 (a bread and a cereal)

So there are two easy options right away-based on scripture!(The brand is called Food for Life) The link posted at the bottom has extensive ways to do so. I would also recommend the book “The Maker’s Diet”

Easy switches: (Better for Worse) format

Almond milk for cow’s milk

Wheat for White (ie Brown rice, wheat bread, wheat pasta)

Almond butter for peanut butter

Fish for red meat

Nuts/Legumes for meat

Foods that look like the body part they are good for:

Carrots: eyes (Vitamin A)

Avocado: Good for pregnant women (Huge seed in it)

Tomato: Heart (Red, 4 chambers)

Sweet Potato: Pancreas

Walnuts: brain (omega 3s)

Kidney beans: Kidneys (Imagine that!)

Ginger: Motion sickness (root looks like a stomach)

Grapes: Lungs (looks like lung sacs)

Lettuce and leafy greens: Circulation (Looks like veins eh?)

Celery: Bones (Calcium-celery is hard to break-like a bone)

As we go through this series, we’ll touch on more specific areas of nutrition and food.

If you want to find more ways to take up your cross in regards to nutrition, here is Dave Fruehauf’s post about it: http://www.tccsa.tc/articles/nutrition0001.htm

Advertisements

One thought on “God and nutrition pt I: Denying one’s self for the Spirit’s sake of working through us

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s