Thankful November. For Food.
Do you eat when you’re anxious? I know the excuse about magnesium in chocolate being good for relaxing. It’s a great excuse; I have no qualms about using it. And I’ve experienced the wrath of hangry kids. Do whatever you can to avoid that scenario and the world will thank you for it. Food is powerful.
But sometimes, I DON’T eat when I’m anxious. On purpose. It’s not something I do often. I love food, and I miss it terribly when we’re apart. The adage is definitely true - absence makes the heart grow fonder. I’ve dreamed of hamburgers with great longing (especially when I was pregnant with my daughter). When I’m pregnant or nursing, I can’t seem to get enough calories to support the two of us, so mealtimes are sacred.
But when I’m not growing another human, meal times are sacred in other ways. Occasionally, when there is a person or event weighing on my mind, I’ll commit my meal to prayer time instead.
I’m not trying to sound holy; if you’re a Christian, chances are you’ve considered or participated in periods of purposeful fasting, and I’m not going to lose treasure in heaven because I dared to mention a Biblical principle. Nor am I very good at it. My life is extremely active (my smart watch has never once had to tell me I’ve been sitting too long). Foregoing calories costs me, mentally, physically, emotionally. Plus, I’m a mom, and my kids expect to eat on the regular, so even if I choose not to eat, I still have to feed them. Have you ever prepared a meal for someone else when you’re ravenous? Even canned soup starts to look attractive (and I can’t stand the smell since my first pregnancy).
But that’s the point. It’s costly. It means I’ll be thinking about food more and more as the day goes on. Every time I wish I could open my mouth to bite something, it reminds me to open my heart in prayer instead, again and again. It means that I’ll grow more crabby as the day wears on, and I’ll have to make a concerted effort to bite my tongue rather than snap at my roguish offspring. Every time I growl, I am reminded that it’s because my stomach is too - and it’s another call to prayer.
So sometimes I pray a lot.
I am no great prayer warrior - but you only get knighted with that title after wearing out your knees with grueling years of practice and trial. I’ve got a long way to go. But the journey will be worth it.
There is no other way to move the hand of God - or rather, to join Him, uniquely and intimately, in His grand plan.
Prayer aligns my will with His. I have seen miracles when people pray; inexplicable moments- from the tiniest cancer molecule destroyed, to the greatest empire toppled - all when people pray.
If something isn’t going the way you’d hoped, I have a suggestion.
No, not rioting.
Not even Twitter.
You could call a friend to talk... but they probably can’t do anything about your issues either. There‘s only One who can.
And He’s closer than a text.
I originally planned save a requisite “thankful for food” post until Thanksgiving feasting was on everyone’s mind. But, well, food’s been on my mind recently. Eating is really fun. I know for many around the world, it’s not a given. This morning, as I sipped hot coffee and cream and fried up eggs fresh from the nests in my backyard, I realized what a gift it is to eat. All the more precious when you don’t.
Today, I’m thankful for food.
P.S. If you see me today, I’m not fasting. So you’re welcome to share your chocolate 😉.