Now I’m Grumpy on the Huffington Post, Too!

{here’s the beginning…}

Recently, HuffPost blogger Lisa Turner offered five religiously inspired rules for eating:

1. Eat mindfully, being aware of the food and your body.
2. Eat for the purpose of nourishing your body; treat your body as a temple.
3. Eat only fresh, clean, light foods, avoiding foods that are processed or canned.
4. Eat only what you need, without overeating or binging on food.
5. Eat for the purpose of bettering yourself spiritually.As a set of rules for eating — and living — it’s hard to do better.

I disagree. I think we can do a lot better.

I have sort of a love-hate relationship with lists and rules. Part of me loves to believe that everything — even things as complicated as food and eating and living! — can be simplified down into three or five or seven rules. And part of me knows that rules, even good rules, don’t really help that much.

Who, by now, hasn’t heard No. 4 (don’t overeat) or No. 3 (avoid processed foods)?

It may surprise you to learn that the Bible itself isn’t all that keen on rules, given that so many of the people who claim to love the Bible tend to focus on, well, rules. But even St. Paul admitted that though he knew all the good rules, he couldn’t follow them. Jesus broke one rule after another to prove the point that following God was about loving other people, not getting the rules right, an ethic that’s not new to him but is in fact a theme in the Hebrew Bible.

{continue reading on the Huffington Post religion page–here!}

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3 thoughts on “Now I’m Grumpy on the Huffington Post, Too!

  1. The ability to enjoy food at all is one of God’s general blessings (an extravagant one, at that, as I think I may have mentioned before!). Food rules tend to get in the way of enjoying that blessing, just as rules generally show us nothing more than our inability to follow them (Romans 7 anyone?).

    I’m not against eating smartly and healthily, but it should all be done for a purpose much higher than those in the five point list above. It should all be done as a way to celebrate God and his abundance: “So whether you eat or drink or whatever you do, do it all for the glory of God.” (1 Corinthians 10:31.)

    Thanks for helping me think about all this today, Rachel.


  2. I really appreciate your post. I’ve tried many times to stick to certain rules, only to “fail” and end up frustrated. Of COURSE I try to make healthy choices with small farmers in mind when I’m having people over, but shared meals aren’t always going to take place in MY home. The kind of “breaking the rules” thinking talked about in your post is freeing.

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