2017-08-25 Gluttony. Personal Stonghold.

Good Morning!

A couple of us have started a small group for freedom from food fixation. We met Tuesday. Nothing fancy or complicated. We’re simply reading out of “Full. Food, Jesus, and the Battle for Satisfaction” by Asheritah Ciuciu. I really like this book because it focuses entirely on the spiritual aspect of food fixation. There are two principles: 1) We already know enough about food to eat relatively heathy, and 2) We have the power of the Holy Spirit in us to break chains. The book focuses entirely on getting ourselves out of the way and cooperating with God.

It’s amazing to me just how pervasive gluttony is – so much so that I bet you even cringed a little at the fact that I used such a term. Gluttony. It’s a real word, folks. It simply means habitual greed or excessive eating. “X” marks the box for Mr. Powers aka “The Glutton”. I don’t like that label much, nor do I like the fact that I am also an “Alcoholic”. Whether or not I like it doesn’t change the facts. Left to my own devices, I indulge to excess in both food and alcohol. Now, it’s been ten years since I had a drop of booze, but I am certain that I could easily take up that habit again. I’m just starting my journey with a heathy eating lifestyle. Oh, I’ve had plenty of attempted starts before, all on my own steam.

Knowledge is not the key to all this. I have plenty of knowledge. We all do. The primary cause of obesity is not the evil food processors. Our problem starts first because we eat too much. Can anyone argue with that? We know that processed food is bad for us, right? The “yeah, buts” end right there.

The question is why we eat too much. That answer lies in Romans 7, and the solution lies in Romans 8. Honestly, I don’t know why I don’t memorize Romans 8. Ok, I do know why. It’s that other deadly sin of mine – sloth. For now, I know the gist of it and can quickly look it up. But first, let’s not forget why Romans 8 is so special. It’s because we have a problem that is so severe.

Romans 7:21-24 So I find it to be a law that when I want to do right, evil lies close at hand. For I delight in the law of God, in my inner being, but I see in my members another law waging war against the law of my mind and making me captive to the law of sin that dwells in my members. Wretched man that I am! Who will deliver me from this body of death?

These are incredible words by Paul. Wretched is a person in a very unhappy or unfortunate state. I don’t know about you, but an honest evaluation of my obesity leaves my very unhappy. Miserable is a good word. In fact, it is bewildering when one really examines personal obesity. How much of life is missed because I’m too fat? I don’t want to be one of those fat grandpas that can only look at grandkids because my lap is too small for their little butts to sit on. I want to roll around on the floor with them. I want to giggle with them. Another thing. I would like to go downhill skiing. Is that forever out of the picture? What the heck is going on here?

So, Romans 7 is a good explanation for the unexplainable. There is more to this than knowledge or desire. The sooner I come to gripes with that the better. Not only that, but I must continually come to grips with it. Brutal honesty is what it takes to be able to go to the one who can help – Jesus. Yes, brutal honesty can bring me to the self-help section of the bookstore. Been there, done that. Why is it that Jesus is my last resort? I know he’s the true answer, the only answer, yet I insist on conquering sin on my own. That’s wretchedness, my friends.

That brings to mine one of my favorite verses. And least favorite, too.

John 15:5 I am the vine; you are the branches. Whoever abides in me and I in him, he it is that bears much fruit, for apart from me you can do nothing.

Bearing fruit doesn’t mean hanging flab on my body. Bearing fruit means sharing my redemptive story and influencing the lives of others with the light of Jesus that God has shone in my heart (2 Cor. 4:6). This is a community event, folks. Yes, for my benefit, but also for the benefit of others. This new group is going to be really good. If you are within driving distance of me and are interested in becoming part of it, pop me a line.

Father, thank you for Jesus and the church. I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me! Amen!

Copyright © 2017 Scott Powers

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