“I released all my weight by eating whatever I wanted.”

HUH? What????

“You mean you only like to eat ‘healthy foods,’ then, right?” often comes the disbelieving reply.

“I have never met a vegetable I like unless it was in my husband’s fresh salsa!” is my honest answer! I do not like fruits and vegetables as a general rule. The last time I had “fresh fruit” it was in a modest slice of apple pie at Christmas! 😉 (Slathered with whipped cream…)

I love ice cream, pizza, Mexican food, McDonald’s french fries (true confessions).

See, it isn’t about the food. It never is. It is about my heart. Thus, the struggle I have had recently. I know better than to make it be about the food. The Lord won’t let me get away with that. As soon as I make it be about the food or about my weight, I have the Holy Spirit in my face saying, “Excuse me, Child…this food is to be received with Thanksgiving. Do not call ‘evil’ what I have called good and declared clean!”

Today’s lesson in The Lord’s Table Workbook revisits a previous teaching that all food is totally acceptable (unless a person is under a personal physician’s orders to the contrary). Any food in moderation is OK.

That said, I like what Thin Within teaches in this regard and feel it takes this a step further. As we mature in our relationships with the Lord we begin to see our “freedom” as freedom from *having* to eat a certain something, to being free *not* to *have* to have it. We discover that it doesn’t hold us under its spell–or that is the hope, anyhow! Our “freedom” is FROM the chains of favorite foods that previously seemed to mesmerize us!

At that point, we begin to learn to exercise discernment. While all foods ARE permissible, not all are beneficial and I don’t want to be mastered by anything. So I begin to take note of how my body feels when I eat certain foods. Thin Within encourages personally rating foods into categories of “pleasers,” “teasers,” “whole body pleasers,” “total rejects.” The goal is to select as often as possible “whole body pleasers” which are typically foods that not only delight the “palate” or taste buds, but also that make the body feel pretty good. There is no extreme blood sugar crash afterwards, for instance. Likewise, there isn’t this sense of “I better eat this, since it is good for me…bleah” with this approach.

The upshot is, all foods, when eaten with a heart giving honor to the Lord with thanksgiving, are LEGAL! Does it sound too good to be true? I have released all my weight that way. The last physical I had my doctor gave me a glowing report, so I don’t seem to be on death’s door because McDonald’s french fries are a part of my life.

Verses for you to prayerfully consider:

1 Timothy 4:1-5
Romans 14:16-18
Mark 7:18-23

The Christian only changes as he or she focuses intently on Jesus Christ (2 Corinthians 3:18), and not on food or any other distraction. The major problem with most diets is that they draw attention to food, either to deny certain foods or to focus on the content of the food (such as counting points, calories, fat grams, carbohydrates, etc…), all of which places our focus on food. (TLT, p. 178)

To the one who has an adulterous affair with food, these diets are good and acceptable because they allow us to think about food all day long. But to the one who wants to have a pure heart and a single mind, thinking of food all day long is not acceptable for we recognize that this can be idolatry. (TLT, p. 178)

So let us not be people who focus on food, or deny certain foods. Let’s lose the popular mindset of “healthy foods” and “junk foods” for Scripture does not at all label food like this….Let us be people who eat whatever we want with rejoicing and thanksgiving, worshiping God in our hearts, remembering to be moderate in the amount that we eat. This is what honors the Lord and provides spiritual and physical health. (TLT, p. 180)

Some might wonder…how can I eat whatever I want in a “moderate” amount? What does that even mean? Do I weigh it? Measure it?

If we trust the Lord that he has made our bodies reliable and begin to listen to them give us cues for our eating, we will eat just the right amount. Physical hunger and physical satisfaction are very distinct. Sometimes it takes a while to learn these signals, but if we ask the Lord for his help and guidance and honestly want to learn (and not deceive ourselves with “I am just sure I am hungry for this 15th Oreo!”), he will show us what physical hunger and satisfaction feels like for us.

How about you? Are you ready to try (or to try again)?

Try this…wait until you are hungry…until you know without a doubt you are hungry…before your next meal (or snack). Hunger is a sensation (not a sound) that happens just below your sternum (chest bone). It is where the ribs join…much higher than most people think. The stomach pouch is like a rubbery balloon and will feel very hollow, maybe ache a bit when it is empty. Don’t wait for a growl or assume that a growl means hunger! Growling may mean you are digesting food that is already in there! If you get a headache, feel dizzy or weak, you have waited too long. (By all means, make sure you don’t do this if your doctor wouldn’t approve.)

Some people take a LONG time to get hungry. It depends on your last meal and how much extra weight you carry on your frame. Busy yourself with other things instead of focusing on “Am I hungry NOW? How about NOW?…ok…NOW?” LOL! That isn’t freedom! Please know that there are a lot of other things that draw a person to eat *other* than physical hunger, so you may *think* you are hungry because there is a heart hunger that gravitates toward food. Take this to the Lord and let him be your satisfaction as you prayerfully wait for your body to need fuel.

Then, once you are hungry, select whatever food you desire. Anything goes…but it won’t take much for you to be satisfied! So be prepared to stop sooner than usual! If you eat slowly and allow yourself to prayerfully praise and thank God for the wonderful tastes of the foods you have selected, you probably won’t need much before you are physically satisfied. That’s OK, because you can have whatever wonderful food it was you enjoyed again later! It will still be available for all the rest of the times in this life when you get hungry!

Give it a try and see what you think if you haven’t ever done this…and then post a comment here about what you discover! Feel free to ask questions. I will be more than happy to try to respond!