Food=Fuel

Image: healingdream / FreeDigitalPhotos.net

I was just thinking about the point of eating the other day.  You know, food is necessary to keep a body going.  That’s why we eat.  We don’t eat to store it up for some odd day sometime when maybe we’ll use what we ate.  It’s a little like manna.  You know?  They were given just the food they  needed to make it through that day.  Similarly, food we eat that we don’t burn is wasted– and becomes revolting.  You know… those rolls and rolls of extra rolls around our guts.  Yeah, I was thinking about it AFTER getting ready for an “event.”

But then my mind swerved to scripture.  Just how often do we gorge ourselves on the Word but never use it in our lives?  I have to admit, I know I’m guilty of it.  Isn’t that what James called being “hearers of the Word and not doers?”  Makes you think, doesn’t it.  It seems weird to consider yourself a “spiritual glutton.”  I don’t think the point is to read the Bible less but to use it more.  Just like (for me anyway) the point isn’t to eat less food (I don’t eat a whole lot of it anyway) but to exercise more.

Yeah.  Time to get me some new walkin’ shoes so I can do some real exercising.  It’s time.  And as I start walking, perhaps it’s also time to do a little praying, memorizing, and meditating.  It’s time to put “feet” to that Word I claim to love so much and show my faith “by my works” kind of thing.

Oy.

Oh, and another silly thought I had when I was analogizing… there is no such thing as “junk food” in scripture.  Isn’t that great!  It’s all wholesome food!  Some might be milk, others might be meat or honey, but none of it is “junk.”  YAY!

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A Time to…

Ecclesiastes 3: 1-8

1For everything there is a season, and a time for every matter under heaven:
2a time to be born, and a time to die;a time to plant, and a time to pluck up what is planted; 3a time to kill, and a time to heal;a time to break down, and a time to build up; 4a time to weep, and a time to laugh;a time to mourn, and a time to dance; 5a time to cast away stones, and a time to gather stones together;a time to embrace, and a time to refrain from embracing; 6a time to seek, and a time to lose;a time to keep, and a time to cast away; 7a time to tear, and a time to sew;a time to keep silence, and a time to speak; 8a time to love, and a time to hate;a time for war, and a time for peace.

 

This has always been one of my favorite passages.  I remember my father using it to explain appropriateness.  I imagine the part about a time to keep silence inspired his lesson that day.  I had a particular talent for the “time to speak” part… I just seemed to imagine that all of life was a time to speak.  All through my life I’ve used this to remind me of things specific to my circumstances.  As a student in school, I would remind myself that there was, “A time to study and a time to read” or “a time for Literature and a time for Science.”  Yesterday after scrubbing the shower for some time, my arms worn out with the effort of scrubbing  the fiberglass enclosure free of the build up of soap, rust, and grime, I chided myself about not having spent the “time” to maintain the cleanliness of it.  This passage came to mind and I wondered about the “Time Tos” of my life.

For everything in my home and life there is a season, and a time for every matter under my roof.

  • a time to arise and a time to sleep
  • a time to teach and a time to learn
  • a time to procure groceries and a time to prepare them
  • a time to clean and a time to educate
  • a time to rebuke and a time to encourage
  • a time to write and a time to read
  • a time to work hard and a time to relax
  • a time to declutter and a time to acquire
  • a time to enjoy hobbies and a time to put them away
  • a time to pray and a time to sing
  • a time to wash and a time to fold
  • a time to advise and a time to listen without speaking
  • a time to be home and a time to get away
  • a time for chaos and a time for peace

 

It’s nothing so profound, but when I do this, I remember that every good thing, whether work, play, fun or miserable, has an appointed time and there is nothing virtuous in spending all my time killing myself with work any more than there is something sinful in enjoying things that enrich my life and bring me joy.  God has given me all the time I need to do what He wants me to do.  I simply need to ensure that I do those things.

Submission~

It’s a dirty word but someone has to say it.  Let’s define it first.

7 dictionary results for: submit
Dictionary.com Unabridged (v 1.1) – Cite This Source – Share This
sub·mit /səbˈmɪt/ Pronunciation Key – Show Spelled Pronunciation[suhb-mit] Pronunciation Key – Show IPA Pronunciation verb, -mit·ted, -mit·ting.
–verb (used with object)
1. to give over or yield to the power or authority of another (often used reflexively).
2. to subject to some kind of treatment or influence.
3. to present for the approval, consideration, or decision of another or others: to submit a plan; to submit an application.
4. to state or urge with deference; suggest or propose (usually fol. by a clause): I submit that full proof should be required.
–verb (used without object)
5. to yield oneself to the power or authority of another: to submit to a conqueror.
6. to allow oneself to be subjected to some kind of treatment: to submit to chemotherapy.
7. to defer to another’s judgment, opinion, decision, etc.: I submit to your superior judgment.
[Origin: 1325–75; ME submitten < L submittere to lower, reduce, yield, equiv. to sub- sub- + mittere to send]

Notice that it is a voluntary choice?  It’s a deferring?  Notice that it is done by one towards another?  Notice that it cannot be compelled or that would be cooersion?    Submission is often treated like a dirty word because it seems to imply a lording over by one to another.  It seems to indicate that one is beneath another in worth.  Implications, however, are not truth.

I’m sick of the lack of truth surrounding submission.  It isn’t demeaning or ugly.  If it is submission, it’s beautiful.  True submission is voluntary, respectful, and a gift.  It cannot be extorted or it’s coercion.  It cannot be threatened or it’s dominance.

However, most of us know that.  We’ve read it, studied it, and many of us embrace it as somethting the Lord has chosen for our good will and His glory.  This is a good thing!

What I keep seeing, however, is the constant use of it in situations that are not ‘submission’ oriented.

A wife serves her husband his favorite pie after dinner.  That’s not submission unless she didn’t want to do it, requested amnesty from evil pie baking, and her husband made it clear that while he understood her revulsion to pie baking, he’d really like that pie.  Notice husband isn’t demanding the pie, he’s asking her to die to self and bake him the stinkin’ pie.  He’d probably do it himself but his crust breaks teeth and he can’t afford a dental trip.  She thinks pies are bad for you and a waste of time, money, other resources- besides, the crust is hard to get how she likes it but if he really wants her to waste her time this way, she’ll do it.

At this point, it’s still not submission.  At this point, she has decided to either “obey” or acquiesce to his desires.  Until her heart decides to yield to his choice for the dessert of the night, it’s simply not submission.  Submission flows from the heart to the actions.  Obedience can be done with a heart that is cold and rebellious.  Submission can’t

What if she wants pie too?  What if he says, “Oh man, I’d love your blueberry pie!” and she thinks, “Well, I had other plans today, but that sounds good.”  That’s not submission.  Thats agreement.  She agrees that her pie is a great idea for dinner!  There’s no submission here.   She didn’t have to subject her will, willingly, to another. Hers was the same as  his.  There was no yielding!

What if she is sitting around and tired… not really wanting to do anything and remembers that he mentioned he missed her pies.  She doesn’t want to make a pie.  She’d rather read a book.  But, she wants to please her husband, show appreciation for all he does for her, so she bakes him the pie.  She dies to self, yields her will… sounds like submission right?  But she’s yielding her will to herself.  It’s still her idea.  He didn’t ask her to do something specific.  He didn’t indicate in any way that he EXPECTED a pie.  He just mentioned a preference and she decided to honor that preference in how she spent her time.

That’s called service.  It’s not submission.  It’s not submission until you have to choose to forgo your will in deference to the will of another.  It has to be a willing choice to do what you don’t want to do in favor of another.

I fear we’re complicating submission in our desire to be ‘holy as He is holy.’   I fear we’re redefining Biblical terms to fit our methods of applying them.  This is dangerous ground.  Let the principle stand on its own two feet.  Scripture doesn’t need our help to make us ‘more godly.’  Jesus finished that at Calvary.