Divorce. It’s a common word these days – too common – almost expected. Like the towel is in the ring before the match has even begun. It makes us feel better that way, less responsible somehow. Usually we think of divorce in the context of marriage, but I think it goes so much deeper and farther than we even realize. We are a society that is divorced from the process.
The process. The in between. The not quite there yet. The working it out. The overcoming of fear. The fighting to hang on. The being present-involved-active in whatever it is we are doing, being, making, raising, and building.
Kids don’t raise themselves, meals don’t make themselves, and marriages don’t sustain themselves – it takes work, knowledge, effort, and tenacity. It takes Christ. It takes us. It takes us in Christ and Christ in us – the hope of glory.
Ok, so back to process. God is opening this up for me in a big way, in a food way. Like manna- weird and unfamiliar – yet unexpectedly sustaining.
I have never thought about the process of what we eat. I drive to a building, buy a box – bag – can – bottle – package: open it up: pour it – heat it – slice it – spread it – cook it: and then eat it. I have never really thought about where it came from, how it got there, how long it has been in existence, whose hands touched it before mine or what was really in it. Is it even food?
I have been divorced from the process. I have believed the lie – looking at the nicely wrapped end product and assuming it was fine (even fruits and veggies are made to look beautiful so we will buy them). Not realizing that God intended different.
We were meant to be involved in the process of what goes into our body. Really from kill and pick, to bake and swallow – it was our responsibility to make it happen. We were present in the process so we knew what we were eating. We had prepared it and the ingredients it contained were a short few. He called our bodies temples, not to be cute, but to be real – this body is His house. And He wants us involved in the caring of it. Not because He wants us to have great bodies (although I am sure He can appreciate a six-pack or two) but because He wants to teach us something in the process.
This was God’s plan: simple food and bountiful provision. It can benefit our lives and our family both physically and spiritually.
BUT- we have to be involved in the process.
I can’t leave that up to food companies and factory workers or the FDA. I have to get back to the basics which means more time planning and more time in the kitchen. It means less meat so the meat we buy can be healthy meat. It means investing more resources into taking care of the bodies within my care now so i don’t have to play as much damage control later fixing health problems that we could have prevented. It means committing to the simple less glorious tasks of dishes and food prep all in the name of accountability and good stewardship of my family.
In the end the details matter to God. In fact, it is in those details that we find Him. As we pull the muffins out of a hot oven, He is there. Our scrubbing of pots can sing worship to Him because our hearts are bent on serving and we are submitted to the process not just the end product.
Can I share with you a few things that I am learning as I process through?
- “In 1960 Americans spent 17.5 percent of their income on food and 5.2 on health care. Since then those numbers have flipped: spending on food has fallen to 9.9 percent and health care costs have climbed to 16 percent” In Defense of Food – Micheal Pollan
- Cows are designed to eat grass, when they do it makes their meat healthy and nutrient rich. The meat we buy in supermarkets is from cows that are fed lots of other stuff that is not grass- the biggest one being other dead cows. And because of this they have to be treated with a myriad of antibiotics to just be kept alive. Same goes for chicken and pigs for that matter.
- 70% of crops grown in the US are subsidized by the government and grow genetically modified corn and soy crops not for direct human consumption but to be made into highly processed food and to be fed to feed lot animals. – documentary FRESH
- Companies can hide harmful chemicals and compounds banned in other countries in their labels (as long as it is less than 2%) by putting it under the category “natural ingredients”
- The FDA does not require food companies to label products as “imitation” anymore. Most of what is on grocery store shelves is not even close to what it says it is, “truth in advertising” is no longer and most food products are simply an illusion not actual food.
Isn’t that mind-blowing? When we engage in the process He has lots to show us.
His last night before He would go to the cross could have been spent anywhere.
But it was spent sitting at a table eating a meal with treasured friends.
And when He said “do this in remembrance of Me”? It could have been a thousand things.
But it was the breaking of bread and drinking of wine.
I think I just got goose bumps…