I confess: You’d be hard pressed to name a diet I haven’t tried. Eating for my blood type, by color, only carbs (it was the thing in the 90s!), no carbs (it’s the thing now)… You name it. I’ve done it. They always ended with me feeling hungry, maybe a little angry, and frustrated that “yet another” diet didn’t work. Sure, I’d lose weight every once and a while. But, that’s not what habitual dieting is really about.
Dieting is about having a firm way of knowing whether or not you are succeeding or failing in the arena of food. Dieting gives every meal decision an opportunity to turn into a moral decision—one of good or bad, right or wrong. Bottom line: The life of dieting is a life that is devoid of grace—at least in the food department.
But, I’ll be honest. That’s why I loved dieting so much. It felt like I was in control… I could determine my own destiny by staying on the diet or falling off the diet. Dieting allowed me a tangible way of determining my value based on my ability to follow the rules. Now I understand that dieting allowed me a way to avoid trusting God and relying on his grace in the arena of food. I’m not saying that we don’t have boundaries in place—healthy boundaries are important in all areas of life. But, in the food arena, what I’ve found is that diets distracted me from listening to my body and God.
The Burden of Better isn’t really a book about diets. Instead, it’s a book that touches the heart of why we go on diets, or why we’re drawn to him. The answer: the pursuit of better. Now, don’t get me wrong. Eating healthier, cutting back on poor nutritional choices, etc…none of those things are bad! But, far too often and easily, we can turn our diet into an idol and our food choices into a merit system by which we serve that idol. God didn’t design us to chase a better body. He designed us to serve him with the one that we have…and, while serving him, be a good steward of all he’s given us.
If you’re a recovering dieter can I encourage you? Check out this book. It’s a deep dive into God’s grace and I think it will encourage you heart.
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