Most of us are guilty of, at one time or another, having sat for hours staring mindlessly at a TV or computer screen. One problem with such mindless activity is that it can completely disconnect us from God’s beautiful creation and wrap us up in a world that is not a reality. Our society has become so media-obsessed that many Americans share more of a connection to their iPhone than they do to some members of their own family.
This trend of mindlessness and disconnectedness is seen today more than ever before in the way we as Americans eat. Obesity is rampant in our society, and is a growing epidemic. Just as we might find ourselves mindlessly watching our favorite reality TV show marathon (“Whoa, did I just watch five hours of this?!”), we can also find ourselves in an ugly habit of mindless eating. God’s word teaches us time and time again about the importance of self-control. However, when we are not connected to God in a deep and meaningful way, through prayer and meditation and the study of His word, we will easily fall prey to the physical temptations all around us (in this case, mindless eating). Proverbs teaches us to be wise about what and how much we put into our bodies. In the first verse of chapter 23, we are told “When you sit down to eat with a ruler, observe carefully what is before you, and put a knife to your throat if you are given to appetite.” Food has always been a temptation for man, and one of the easiest indulgent pleasures to give in to.
There are many, however, who do not just mindlessly eat, but rather have an unhealthy connection to food, allowing it to become an obsession, addiction, or even a god.
Matthew 6:24 says, “No one can serve two masters, for either he will hate the one and love the other, or he will be devoted to the one and despise the other.”
As followers of Jesus, we have been set free from our former lives enslaved to sin, and can now enjoy the spiritual blessings that bring joy beyond what any food can ever offer (Romans 6:6). In Ephesians 4:24 we are told to “put on the new self, created after the likeness of God in true righteousness and holiness.” And in Colossians 3:10, we “have put on the new self, which is being renewed in knowledge after the image of its creator.”
If this is something you struggle with, it is important to pray to God for help, but also to seek help from others around you, or even from a professional. God wants our full service to Him, and for us to give this to Him we must rid our lives of other masters.
It is only when we can replace our obsession with media, or food, with an obsession with Jesus that we can truly serve Him mindfully and find our most meaningful connection in Him.
Amanda Scott is a graduate of Freed-Hardeman University who now works as a freelance photographer. She and her husband Boo work with the Westside Church of Christ in Norman, OK and are expecting are expecting their first daughter.