Everyone knows that losing weight and being healthy is more to do with what we eat than how much exercise you do. So we kinda need to get our diets right.
Believe it or not the Bible is full of wonderful examples of how we can eat to give our bodies the best chance to be what they need to be. As Elizabeth George does in her book, we’ll have a quick look at an example from Daniel.
Let’s start with Daniel. Daniel’s story can be found in the book of Daniel in the Old Testament. You’re probably much more familiar with the ‘lion’s den’ section of the story but the start of the book is what we’re going to look at. Daniel and his friends were described as
“young men without any physical defect, handsome,
showing aptitude for every kind of learning, well informed,
quick to understand, and qualified to serve in the king’s palace.” (v4)
We are told that the King had a definite plan for these young men. They were to be trained for 3 years beginning with being served the finest food from the Kings own table. But v8 shows us Daniel’s heart.
“But Daniel resolved not to defile himself with the royal
food and wine, and he asked the chief official for permission
not to defile himself this way.”
The NKJV says that he “purposed in his heart” – it was an actual decision that went against everything he was being told and everything he’d been given to eat – but it was something he knew to be right and God would honour him for his decision.
The test would be in how eating the food he requested would affect his outward appearance. After ten days the young men actually looked better than those eating the King’s food and after the three years of preparation the King found them to be much healthier too.
The key here however is Daniel’s discipline – he was offered the very best and richest of foods every day – and yet he choose to eat what he knew would benefit his body. How many times when you are offered chance to eat a cream bun or a rich dessert when you’re out for dinner do you actually say no and pick the fruit instead? Or take a vegetarian option instead of a fatty meat feast?
And how many times do we actually notice how a certain meal makes us feel after we have eaten it? Elizabeth George has a great idea for this – she tells us how she intentionally focuses on what and when she eats, as well as figuring out how she feels afterwards and writing down a list of foods that make her feel heavy-leaded or tired as opposed to refreshed and energised. That way she knows exactly what to eat when she next needs an energy boost!
Tomorrow I’ll have a couple of links to blog posts that will help you to decide what your healthy eating plan looks like.
Until then – keep shining… J