I covered this topic in another post...but I wanted to relate it to the diet topic...

"The map is not the territory."

I have a shelf-full of diet and fitness books. Some of them are very good...some of them are not. Many of them say the same thing, only with a different author, different name, only slightly different stuff.

From's only a little way to South The Glucose Sugar Busters.

Next verse...same as the first.

I have another one on the way - I hope this one is different.

"The map is not the territory."

Pain Free Running... to Marathons for Beginners... to Running for Pleasure and Fitness.

"The map is not the territory."

All of these books do nothing if I never get off the couch. They do nothing if I hang onto my chips and cheese...and oreos.

"The map is not the territory."

I keep a diet and exercise log.  Having all of those lines to write my consumption in does NOTHING if I don't fill them in!  Having boxes to check won't make me healthier if I don't practice the territory that the map tells me to explore.

"The map is not the territory."

I custom wrote my log, with columns for whether or not my food is peanut-free.  The answer is not to look at the "map" and add more "map" (another column).  The answer is to live the territory.

This is an "NLP" term that I have heard in reference to Christianity. It took me a while to understand it, but I'm getting there.

"The map is not the territory."

What does this mean? To me, it means that it doesn't really matter how long you look at the map, the map is not a substitute for experiencing the territory.

I can show you a google map of Lake Tahoe. I can even link to a satellite photo.

I can show you this:

and I can show you this: (I like this one from the air, because you can clearly see the airstrip and I had seen a little plane landing there)...

But are the maps and the photos identical to feeling the sun on your face and the sound of the skis and taste of the snow when you fall face first into the snowbank?  Is looking at the satellite image the same as listening to the wind in the trees and feeling it in your face as you move down the (bunny) hill?
We would all agree...yes. Of course. Reading is not the same as living.

"The map is not the territory."

In the same way, reading is not the same as doing. I had never been on downhill skis before. I read instructions and I read websites and I listened to descriptions and directions.

But that "map" is not the territory either. Reading and listening is not the same as having somebody ski in front of you, showing you, guiding you, reminding you of everything you had heard and read, encouraging you to "do as I do".

"The map is not the territory."

Here is where I apply it to a Christian walk. "The map is not the territory." Scripture can be compared to the map

(and please, don't attempt any accusation that I'm lessening the authority of Scripture by making it into a mere "map"...for more reading about my views of Scripture, see

Anyway..."The map is not the territory".

Scripture is the revelation of God, the Written Word, God's Word to His bride. **Somewhat** akin to reading love letters when you could be in your sweetie's arms.  (But only "somewhat" because the Spirit indwells us to teach us what the Word is telling us.)

The Bible is like the map and life is like the territory.

The Bible tells us how to life and the Spirit teaches us how to apply it (like the stuff I read about skiing and my friend telling me how to apply it.  And (like the one who showed me "how to") Scripture also tells us about examples to follow.

At the top of the list (In Scripture) is Christ - to be "Christ-like" is what we strive for.

1 Peter 2:21
For to this you have been called, because Christ also suffered for you, leaving you an example, so that you might follow in his steps.

We also Scripture telling us about human examples to follow.

Philippians 3:17
Brothers, join in imitating me, and keep your eyes on those who walk according to the example you have in us.

1 Thessalonians 1:7
so that you became an example to all the believers in Macedonia and in Achaia.

2 Thessalonians 3:9
It was not because we do not have that right, but to give you in ourselves an example to imitate.

1 Timothy 4:12
Let no one despise you for your youth, but set the believers an example in speech, in conduct, in love, in faith, in purity.

James 5:10
As an example of suffering and patience, brothers, take the prophets who spoke in the name of the Lord.

1 Peter 5:3
not domineering over those in your charge, but being examples to the flock.

These are examples to imitate.

2 Thessalonians 3:7
For you yourselves know how you ought to imitate us, because we were not idle when we were with you,

Hebrews 13:7
Remember your leaders, those who spoke to you the word of God. Consider the outcome of their way of life, and imitate their faith.

(side note:  the Greek word is transliterated "mimeomai" - like mimic...mime.)

We might call those we "imitate" as examples "role models"- although that role is more encompassing in a personal relationship.  Scripture says to consider the outcomes of our leaders lives...and imitate their faith.

We are told to find examples...consider the outcomes...and imitate.

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Adventures in changing your mind...

The book I'm reading first is "NLP: The New Technology of Achievement"

Chapter 1: "Changing Your Mind"

- point: we cannot NOT change. We are constantly changing, whether we are trying (and liking) a new food, moving away from an unhealthy friend or habit, or learning a new hobby.

The book says, "Pain is a sign that it is time to change."

My thought: every pain, no matter how small or minor, is like a corner in the road. You can keep going (and maybe practicing a better technique for "driving"), or you can choose to take one of the directions that the corner might take you. Choose a direction; there are many!

The Diet Connection:

Do I like the way my body feels when I treat it right? How do I feel when I do NOT treat it right?

- Nightshade plants. I know that I can eat 3 (three) french fries and my hips tighten up and hurt. I can choose to eat them or not - but over the years it has become easier for my brain to connect the pain to the eating of this food-family (potatoes are the worst for me)

- I am beginning the process with peanuts and possibly a couple of other foods. Do I like peanut butter (or certain foods with peanut butter) enough to put up with the coughing? Or am I willing to teach my brain to connect the pain of the cough and breathing difficulties with the eating of peanuts?

- and the rest of the does my body feel when I am eating and exercising right? Am I willing to keep a detailed food and beverage log for a time so that I can connect the feelings with the actions? (My "gut" tells me that if I spend a day without drinking "enough" water, I feel lethargic and night)