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  • Writer's pictureChuck Monan

Beyond the Plate: Food, Faith, and the Search for Fulfillment


Pizza at Pinnacle Church of Christ
There is no love sincerer than the love of food. – George Bernard Shaw

No people in the history of mankind have such a complex, conflicted, contentious and confounding relationship with food as today’s Americans.


Thanks to the incredible productivity of American farmers, the ascendancy of corn as king of the food chain, and our relative affluence, we have cheap, easy access to far more calories than we require.


Not that this isn’t obvious from, say, just looking at us.


Record numbers of Americans are overweight. Related illnesses like diabetes and heart dis- ease are afflicting and killing millions before their time. And instead of eating less and exercising more, too many of us keep searching for a panacea, a magic pill or new diet that will fix it all. But it doesn’t exist.


Something that most people are loath to admit is that our wildly imbalanced relationship with food is really symptomatic of other things. Such as turning to food to fix our problems, allay our fears, and salve our hurts.


Jesus said as much: “Is not life more important than food and the body more than clothes? So do not worry, saying ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear?’ For the pagans run after all these things, and your heavenly Father knows that you need them. But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well.” (Matthew 6:25, 31-33).


Food does not bring us near to God, and it cannot take the place of God. (1 Corinthians 8:8).


 


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