I lost a stick of butter this week…not much, but even if I lost “only” a stick of butter each week, over the course of a year, that’s thirteen pounds. Of course, I could be doing a lot better at one of the fruits of the spirit: self-control.
Yesterday at the Weight Watchers meeting, somebody said, “Persistence, not perfection.” I'll try to remember that; I'll also remember that when I drop an egg, I don't throw up my hands and say, "darn, the whole dozen's ruined!". In the same way, if I slip up during the day, the whole day is not ruined.
I got an e-mail from a person on a recipe list that I’m on. Her signature line is: “Today I shall…try to bear in mind the many great kindnesses that God has done for me, and ignore the relatively insignificant displeasures in my life.” In the classroom I just left, I worked with a great man. He said, "God's been so good to me, how can I have a bad day?"
This morning’s sermon was on 1 Corinthians 6:12-20. We know the middle part of this passage addresses the ritual (and other) immorality in Corinth. But the part that stuck out for me this morning (with my one lonely stick of butter on my mind) was that Paul didn’t start out talking about sex.
"All things are lawful for me," but not all things are helpful. "All things are lawful for me," but I will not be enslaved by anything.” Food is meant for the stomach and the stomach for food"--and God will destroy both one and the other. Last week, too many times, I was mastered by food. It was either “I want sweet” or “I want salty”. Too much of this, too much of that. Not enough of the good stuff.
This passage winds up with “Or do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit within you, whom you have from God? You are not your own, for you were bought with a price. So glorify God in your body.” Yes, we relate that passage to the middle part of the text…but it’s all part of the same text. Why do we not pay attention to the first part? Is it because we tend to give a “sin pass” to certain sins (gluttony)?
What I want to keep in front of me this week is this question: Is it glorifying to God to have food (or anything else) in control of my body?
This week I resolve that “All things are lawful for me, but I will not be enslaved by anything.”