Healthy Diet With God
Excerpt from Beautiful Dreamer: Dreams - God's Persona Navigation System (p. 84-86)
There have been times in my life where I subconsciously lived with the mentality that “just enough” of God was all I needed. When I think of “just enough,” I think of a diet. To diet is to limit portions and stick to one serving, not multiple servings. My family teases me because of my love for food. My brother-in-law says I’m on a perpetual diet that starts tomorrow. I can’t wait to get to eaven and share in the feast with unlimited sugar.
To be successful on a diet, I must control portions and intake. Taking in just enough food will increase my metabolism, and eventually, I will start losing weight. Every diet has a formula with suggestions to stick to whether it is a low-fat, high-protein, or vegan diet, and, of course, if you stick to a specific plan, you’re guaranteed weight loss. Diet plans also instruct you to take in lots of water and start your day with a healthy breakfast, in addition to keeping a daily food diary where you write everything you eat and drink. Some even recommend making substitutions to satisfy your cravings.
I’ve found no matter what fad diet I try, there are foods that aren’t healthy for any diet. I could live on Oreos, buttered popcorn, and hot-fudge brownie sundaes, and I haven’t found a diet plan that would recommend eating these types of foods on a daily basis to lose weight and eat healthily. Not only are these foods unhealthy, they decrease energy.
I must limit my intake, and by doing so, I increase my metabolism and my energy levels. To lose weight, I must remove the junk and stick to a plan consisting of healthy foods. Even though I know this, I still look for substitutions so I can eat more sweets. I still want to do it my way.
There are no substitutions to walking in the Spirit and following God’s “diet plan” for my life. I must be sustained by the bread of life, Christ himself. I must walk in the fruits of the Spirit, which allow me to love as God loves. There are no substitutions to knowing God other than through prayer. Taking in “just enough” of God limits my intake of His presence and the outcome of His power.
A five to ten-minute devotional every day is having “just enough” of God to go about my day. Attending a weekly worship service is having “just enough” of God. There have been times in my life my “smaller plate” is a verse or two a day or I’ve spent more time journaling in a food diary than in my spiritual diary. There have been times I spend more time researching diet plans than spending time with God.
When it comes to God, “just enough” is not sufficient to walk in the supernatural. If I want God to work through me or if I want to see miracles or people touched by the power of God, a little of God will not move the hand of God. I can’t do anything to get God to move. He moves through my obedience.
Sticking to the Christian formula to attend a weekly church service and read a verse or two once a day will significantly limit God’s direction for my life. I must consume Christ in every aspect of my day from morning to evening, including when I sleep.
For me to walk in the Spirit, I must do the complete opposite of a physical diet. I must consume as much of God as I can. If I get off course on my diet it doesn’t work. If I stay on my health plan, it increases my confidence and self-esteem. It is the same with God; when I stick to His plan, I have confidence in Him, not in what I see around me.
My day must be centered on God. Living by the Spirit’s power occupies my thoughts and actions. I must strive to walk in the fruit of the Spirit. When I live by the Spirit, I then follow the Spirit’s leading in every part of my life. (Galatians 5:16-25, NIV)
There are no substitutes for being filled with the Spirit and trying to live a Godly life.
“But what happens when we live God’s way? He brings gifts into our lives, much the same way that fruit appears in an orchard—things like affection for others, exuberance about life, serenity. We develop a willingness to stick with things, a sense of compassion in the heart, and a conviction that a basic holiness permeates things and people. We find ourselves involved in loyal commitments, not needing to force our way in life, able to marshal and direct our energies wisely.” Galatians 5:22-24 MSG
Jesus replied, “I am the bread of life. Whoever comes to me will never be hungry again. Whoever believes in me will never be thirsty.” (John 6:35, NLT)
We need physical and spiritual food to be healthy:
A Grab-and-go God: When you’re rushing out the door, do you find yourself devouring a verse or two the way you grab an unhealthy snack? Remember that your soul needs nourishment from the Word of God as much as your body needs healthy food. “When I discovered your words, I devoured them. They are my joy and my heart’s delight,” Jeremiah 15:16
Boredom: Studies show people tend to eat more when they’re watching TV. Have you grabbed a snack and sat idly in front of the TV to unwind? Guilty! What about your Bible? Have you snatched it from the shelf out of boredom the way you do food? The next time you’re wondering what to do in the moment, nibble on the Word of God. The more you consume of it, your appetite for the Word of God will increase. You’ll never waste a “crumb” from overconsumption. He is the living, breathing Word. John 1:1 John 7:37-39
Acquire a taste for the Word: After I got married, Rick encouraged me to try foods I often ignored. I’ve been amazed at how many foods I wouldn’t go near as a kid that I enjoy today. It’s the same with books and passages in the Bible that I didn’t understand. "Try" unfamiliar, hard to understand, sections of the Bible and you'll begin to learn more. I still don’t understand the vast majority of the Bible, but that’s the joy of reading it. Every time I pick it up, verses “taste” fresh and new. It’s where God teaches me more about his being. The more you read it, you’ll discover the same. “I hunger for righteousness.” Matthew 5:6 “Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they will be filled.” Matthew 6:6 (NIV)
Lack of self-control: Without self-control, established patterns of unhealthy eating continue. We need self-control to change behavior. Whether we have a problem with an over-consumption of food or no appetite for the Word of God, we need discipline.
“ For this very reason, make every effort to add to your faith goodness; and to goodness, knowledge; 6 and to knowledge, self-control; and to self-control, perseverance; and to perseverance, godliness; 7 and to godliness, mutual affection; and to mutual affection, love. 8 For if you possess these qualities in increasing measure, they will keep you from being ineffective and unproductive in your knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ.” 2 Peter 1:5-8 NIV