I stopped eating bread back in July...and crackers, chips, processed foods, sugar, dairy, grains....
You know...everything I love to eat.
A couple of years into a seeking a healthier life, and all the implications thereto appertaining, I realized this summer than the comfort found in those foods created a layer of insulation protecting me from some other thing. Even though still walking, the intake was too much. It's not that I needed to practice moderation with those foods...I just needed to not take them at all.
What's fat for except to provide stores of energy for when life's winters come? The presupposition is that it is stored because it will be needed to provide fuel until such a time that fuel will come with regularity, thus sustaining life.
But we who've lived a life with far more stored than our systems could ever burn in a day understand another function it serves. Back when I used to write a lot, I've talked a bit about that.
I'm not an Orthodox Paleo guy, although it seems so compared to my previous diet. I do eat oatmeal 3 times a week. I do intake some grains in another form...God bless the Commonwealth. :). But everything else is pretty consistent. Maybe I'm a Reformed Paleo.
As surprised as I was almost two and a half years ago that I'd take up walking religiously, I wanted to see if I could do this thing with my food intake, and after having done it, would I be glad I did. The answer is yes, and it's hard to imagine going back.
There is one caveat to this shift. I do eat bread once a week. It's a small piece, pulled from a loaf over which the people prayed and invoked the Spirit of the Living God to make known to us the essence of Jesus through bread broken and cup shared.
I guess it wasn't until September, a good couple of months into this shift in me, that I was consciously aware that I was about to eat bread. I had a moment's pause to think, "just how 'doctrinal' will I be in this pursuit?" This is my normal now, after all. My standard. And what are we without standards?
I guess purists will call it equivocation. Too often there's little acceptance of others who don't keep to the standard with the same zeal as they. I get that. I even thought about it...what can I eat in this moment that would substitute for bread...so help me, I actually thought about that.
And then I heard the words spoken, "This is the body of Christ, the Bread of Heaven...broken for you." I took that bread dipped it into the chalice and put it in my mouth without hesitation while my mind wandered to a setting of Psalm 34 that Glad River recorded 10 years ago, "Taste and see the goodness of the Lord."
I'm not bothered by the inconsistency. I find Jesus there.
I started all this for my health. And I eat bread once a week for my spirit's health. It's tempting to want acknowledgement for how forward living I am. Too often things that seem on one hand prophetic really mask more egocentric intent. At the same time the principles I've come to value guiding my daily food intake are solid and grounded in aspirations for health, not survival.
I've survived long enough. I want to live, and to do that I had to adapt, to change - but not so that you'll think of me as something I'm not.
Rather, I want to live because of what it means to "taste and see that the Lord is good." I want to live in the goodness of that because it's there that all that is nonsense in me can fall away and all that's left is my life's charge---to love God with all I am and have, and to love what God loves.
Nothing else matters.