“When I discovered your words, I devoured them. They are my joy and my heart’s delight, for I bear your name, O Lord God of Heaven’s Armies”. Jeremiah 15:16
I have a horrible sinus infection at the moment, and I have a confession to make; when I don’t feel well physically, I suddenly don’t care anymore about healthy eating. I crave spicy crisps, and usually end up buying the biggest bag I can find, and then I munch my way through the entire bag, with endless cups of tea, usually watching some classic box set on Netflix, feeling very sorry for myself indeed.
Of course I know on some level that I’d feel better faster if I ate vitamin enriched fruit and vegetables, drank my usual two litres of water, and rested properly, but somehow my brain equates those good things with disciple and self control, both of which seem to fly out of the window when I don’t feel physically well. It’s what’s commonly known as ‘comfort eating’.
Spiritual Comfort Eating
Well, the Lord has a sense of humour, and I had to laugh to myself this morning when I wearily opened my Bible to read, and it fell open at a place where I had a little book marker; it was Matthew chapter 4 and my eyes were drawn to Matthew 4:1-4 “Then Jesus was led by the Spirit into the wilderness to be tempted there by the devil. For forty days and forty nights he fasted and became very hungry. During that time the devil came and said to him, “If you are the Son of God, tell these stones to become loaves of bread.” But Jesus told him, “No! The Scriptures say, ‘People do not live by bread alone, but by every word that comes from the mouth of God’.”
Jesus’ whole life was a model for us of how to draw aside and spend time with the Father. And here, in the wilderness is the perfect example. Tired and ‘very hungry’, Jesus didn’t quit or give in. It’s easy to forget sometimes that even though Jesus was fully God, he became fully man – He felt and experienced everything we do, hunger pangs, physical pain, grief, tiredness…and Satan saw that He was tired and hungry in the wilderness.
It’s when you’re at your most vulnerable that the devil strikes isn’t it? He comes oozing and dripping his insidious lies – trying to convince you that God has abandoned you, that you could fill that hunger in your soul with a shopping spree – a new pair of shoes perhaps? A big cream donut? Or better still, he whispers, “maybe a change of church will do the trick? Nobody in your church likes you anyway!”
And so we “spiritually comfort eat”. In other words, we try to fill that ache in our hearts with stuff – meaningless, empty things that may give us momentary happiness and relief but before we know it, that gnawing ache is back.
Created to Crave Him
Just as we need nutritious food for our bodies to function properly, our souls are created for the Word of God. We can’t live properly without God’s Word. When I eat the wrong foods, my body becomes sluggish, my energy levels drop dramatically and I generally become a bit of a slob, because I just don’t feel like doing anything. The moment I start eat properly again, with plenty of fibre, lots of water, fresh fruit and vegetables, I feel alive physically!
So it is with our ‘inner man’
The Word of God is power-packed with spiritual nutrition able to produce incredible things in and through you. Only God’s Word will satisfy that inner appetite and cause you to truly live and grow in strength and potential.
You Are What You Eat
Have you ever heard that expression, “you are what you eat?” In other words, you become like the thing you over indulge in.
This applies to the things we feed our hearts and minds too. If a person is sitting around watching junk on TV all day, or reading trashy novels, the content and principles of that novel, that TV program, becomes that person’s world – it’s what they think about and talk about.
Here’s the best news: You can’t possibly over-indulge in the Word of God!
Even a few minutes a day of Bible reading will begin to show in your life. Not ‘speed reading’ but slowly digesting, absorbing the written words, asking God to speak to you.
I guarantee that people will start to notice a difference in you. You will notice a difference in you! You will begin to experience God’s life, wisdom and power in your day to day living, as you feed on His Word.
Today, I still have the cold, but I have determined in my heart to ‘comfort eat’ from God’s storehouse, His rich, spiritually nutritious, incredible Word!
John 6:48-51 “Yes, I am the bread of life! Your ancestors ate manna in the wilderness, but they all died. Anyone who eats the bread from heaven, however, will never die. I am the living bread that came down from heaven. Anyone who eats this bread will live forever; and this bread, which I will offer so the world may live, is my flesh.”
Isaiah 55:1-2 “Is anyone thirsty? Come and drink— even if you have no money! Come, take your choice of wine or milk— it’s all free! Why spend your money on food that does not give you strength? Why pay for food that does you no good? Listen to me, and you will eat what is good. You will enjoy the finest food.”