What I feel led to discuss today is not exciting to me. Quite the contrary. It’s a lot easier – and much more pleasant, may I add – to discuss things that I feel like I am doing well. It’s easier, too, to talk about things I know I need to work on, but that I’ve at least made some headway in. It’s easier to point things out if I can say, “I’ve dealt with this, too” (PAST TENSE) or “I’m dealing with this in my own life” (PRESENT PROGRESSIVE, as in there is progress being made).
Yes, those things are easier than this. Any of those things would be easier for me than discussing food and diet in a series of posts on balanced living. All of that would be easier than writing about how I know I need to eat well, for myself and my family. All of that would be easier than saying how hard it is for me to eat as I should.
It sounds like such a basic thing, and really it is basic. It’s pretty ground-level, in the grand scheme of things. It’s so basic, in fact, that we’re trying to teach the concept to my three year old. It was in a conversation with her the other day that I realized how food relates to this whole balance thing.
She wanted a supper of chips and goldfish crackers. I explained that eating that would not make her strong…but that eating a balanced diet would.
I have a sweet tooth. Also, I am hypoglycemic. Also again, I am no culinary genius. Also once again, I have a three year old and food allergies in my house. Also once again, food prices are ridiculous and our family is on a pretty tight grocery budget.
Those things make my relationship with food a complicated one. Yes, they certainly do…but that’s no excuse for my poor eating habits. I need to eat better than I do. I need to eat better things more consistently…more joyously, even.
So whether you eat or drink or whatever you do, do it all for the glory of God. (1 Corinthians 10:31)
I need to eat a balanced diet because my body is a temple. I need to eat better so that I can serve God with energy and life. If I am sick, I cannot do everything being asked of me. I cannot minister in my church community if I feel bad, and I cannot serve God in my home if all I want to do is sleep. Food – healthy food – is a big part of that. Eating well – both in the types of food and the frequency of my meals – is essential for me to live the life I have been created to live.
My husband works in the automotive industry. A few months ago his employer put out a list of approved fueling stations for the make of car they service. Since we have two of those cars, we were interested in what the list had to say. The stations on that list were ones whose quality and standards are seen to be good enough for the engines of those cars. Essentially, if we use the right fuel our cars, they’ll run well. If we don’t…the maker was essentially giving us the heads up that our cars won’t work as well as they should and that it won’t be the maker’s fault. If we compromise on what we put into the engine, we are settling for substandard performance.
My body is really not so different. If I compromise on my diet, I will have no one to blame when my body doesn’t hold up and perform as I want it to. If I choose cookies over yogurt…candy over fruit…ice cream over carrot sticks, then I will be choosing lethargy, fatigue, and grumpiness as well.
To be really honest, I feel as though I should have a lot more to say on this subject. Because I’m still so far from where I should be when it comes to how I eat, though, I think many of the profound lessons on the subject are still out there for me to learn. I’ll have to let it suffice to say that this is important…and that this is something I really need to work on. I really don’t think I will ever have a fully balanced life unless I can first balance this most basic of my human needs.