What You Eat is an Act of Worship

Written By Marla Harvey

On January 1, 2019
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I’m sure you already know that worship is far more than just the singing we do together at church on Sunday morning. It’s an everyday act of gratitude and praise to an awesome God who has given us life, and so much more, to be thankful for. He is worthy of our best in everything we do, and for the most part, we strive to honor Him with our thoughts, actions, and deeds.

However, there’s an area of our lives that we have left open, an area that has given the enemy the opportunity to ravish our church bodies with all kinds of diseases, many of which can be prevented or treated without drastic measures. That area is our food life.

Before you start quoting scriptures justifying eating whatever you want, let me ask you…were there drive-thrus 2,000 years ago? Were foods created in labs to sustain pesticides and chemicals and pumped full of steroids to make it grow bigger and faster? Were natural fat molecules split and modified to make “food” products sustain a shelf life of 3-5 years? Of course not! In the days of the Bible, foods were not processed, they were farm or field to table. The way God intended us to eat, after all that is the decree He gave Adam when he was cast from the Garden (Gen. 3).

For the most part, humanity has continued to eat in this way, but in the last 100 or so years, this natural way of life has been shifted, perverted, and turned around, as so many other things have been, not only for the sake of expediency, but also because food production has become a big business. Whenever the opportunity to make a profit becomes involved, people suffer. We were warned about this when the apostle Paul said “the love of money is a root of all kinds of evil” (1 Tim 6:10, NIV). As a result of the ability to produce low quality food at dirt cheap prices, we have gotten sicker and sicker, with seemingly no end in sight. It’s time we take our power back, our lives back, and once again worship God with our bodies.

Worship God with your Body

In Romans 12:1, Paul urges the citizens of Rome to offer their bodies to God, to give themselves to God, as an act of worship. Wow! Now if you’re reading this and simply thinking that this refers only to sexual morality, you’re missing the point. The very hairs on your head are numbered (Matt. 10:30); and the same God who knew you before you were born (Ps. 139:13) is concerned for your whole body. When Paul was describing the body of Christ, the church, to the Corinthians, he used the analogy of the human body, describing how God put our bodies together just as He wanted them. Isaiah and Paul described God as the potter, and us as the clay (Isa 29:16; Rom 9:21). If God put such care and detail into creating our bodies, surely He must care for what we put into His creation? 

You might not yet be convinced that God expect you to honor Him with the lifestyle choices you make, and that’s ok, it took me a very long time to realize that I needed to surrender all of my lifestyle choices – including food, time, recreation, and everything else – to Him in order to worship and honor Him. But I hope that you are listening to that still, small voice telling you that this area of your life needs a transformation. I have two final thoughts to share with you….The night Jesus was arrested, then tortured, beaten, and ultimately crucified, he shared bread and wine with His disciples in the first communion. To this day, we regularly take part in communion together in remembrance of His body broken for us and His blood shed for us. We pray for our food and ask for God’s blessing before we eat. God is already intimately intertwined in the foods we eat and drink, from the sacred act of communion to the everyday act of blessing our food, both of these done in worship to the one who gave so much for us to have life in abundance. The very least we can do is begin to not only pray that He bless our food, but that He would be first in our choices; and if what we are putting into our bodies isn’t honoring Him, that He will convict us to make better choices, and that we would be obedient to hear Him.  Until next time, I’ll leave these words from Paul:

And so, dear brothers and sisters, I plead with you to give your bodies to God because of all he has done for you. Let them be a living and holy sacrifice—the kind he will find acceptable. This is truly the way to worship him. Don’t copy the behavior and customs of this world, but let God transform you into a new person by changing the way you think. Then you will learn to know God’s will for you, which is good and pleasing and perfect” (Romans 12:1-2, NLT). 

Photo by: Jason Coleman on Unsplash

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