There are times when I wold love to have a piece of Swiss cheese, a doughnut, or take a trip to PF Chang's for Better Lemon Chicken. My youngest daughter would love it if she didn't have to be meticulous tracking her carb intake. My older daughter probably would love to enjoy her homemade pizza with marinara sauce again. Why don't we go ahead and treat ourselves? It would make us sick. My older daughter and I have celiac disease and food allergies, one of hers is allergy to nightshades. My younger daughter has type 1 diabetes and is allergic to seafood. All of us accidentally get something that causes us a problem. We feel miserable because our bodies have been harmed. The price to cheat is too high.
Dating had been challenging for me. Every man who asked me out wanted to go to a restaurant. Quite normal, right? When I would let each know my limits and which restaurants I could find something safe on the menu, it wasn't unusual for a wide-eyed stare. Some would politely decline. Evidently that was too much. God bless my fiance'! He not only stuck it out, but has adjusted to eating what I eat when we are together at mealtime. He said that his stomach doesn't hurt either. Hmmm. Our rehearsal dinner, reception meal and wedding cake are all gluten-free, dairy-free, soy-free and nut-free, but not flavor-free. I give God the glory for being able to pull that one off! All this being said while I sit here in my jammies eating an Udi's gluten-free, dairy-free, soy-free, nut-free whole grain bagel (the best I've found!), natural applesauce and blueberries with my coffee. I just recovered from something unknown that made my tummy very painful and swollen. Hidden problems are more than enough for me.
This is Celiac Awareness month so it occurred to me that this post might be appropriate. So why in the world would anyone knowingly eat something that makes them sick or puts them at risk for heart attack or stroke? Why lose work time or not function well? Why be stuck in bed when you should be at your kids' soccer game? There are a number of reasons.
1. Denial."That's ridiculous! I must have gotten something starting to go bad."
2. Intense craving. "If it is around me, I have to have a little bit!"
3. Fit in with the crowd. "I don't want to inconvenience my friends. What will they think?"
4." Why bother fighting with it? I will just have to be miserable."
None of those reasons justifies damaging the one body God gave us! For someone with celiac disease, nutritional deficiencies slowly kill the body. For someone with food allergies, hives, anaphylactic shock and other reactions could kill us. An Epi Pen shouldn't become a regular-use medication. There are consequences not to be ignored. God created us in His image, a spiritual being and place us into a perishable body (2 Corinthians 4:7, also see It Personal Stewardship). They have quirks, needing special care. To harm our bodies is a sin against God and ourselves. What we do with them impacts family and friends around us. We cause others to harm their own bodies by our example. We can't function as well so we have problems being there for our kids' activities. We have to buy medications and go to the doctors' office, using funds that should be used for more valuable things. If you are struggling with eating food that is hurts you, you likely have a food addiction. Seek help from your doctor, see a counselor, talk with your pastor. There are plenty of resources to get you on track. If I can point you in the right direction, let me know. You aren't alone.
So my aim here is to encourage you in your difficult circumstances or to support someone dealing with these issues. Phillippians 4:12-13 states, "I know how to be abased, and I know how to abound. Everywhere and in all things I have learned both to be full and to be hungry, both to abound and to suffer need. I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me." NKJV The apostle Paul suffered from afflictions as a result of preaching Christ as Savior when he wrote those words. But I see an application here for us. There will be times we will be hungry whenever we are in places where there is nothing we can eat. We will be mocked and treated as "adult picky eaters", and even for our faith in Christ because someone chides that if God really loved us why doesn't He heal us. We will become very ill sometimes to the point of death because an offending food is present and we don't know it. Every time someone slips something into our food to see if what we are saying is really true. Although only one of these is a form of persecution, this is a tough road. I am here to encourage you that you can do this because of Jesus Christ. He carries us through the tough times, provides food when there isn't a visible provision, staves off hunger when we haven't eaten for the day. He provides the funds for this expensive diet we must follow. He watches over us to protect us more often than we know. He strengthens us to stay the path to healthy living. As a result of taking care of yourself, you are able to be there for those who depend on you. You were born to bring glory to God and be a blessing to others. God bless you!
Picture of girl above is from www.udisglutenfree.com
Reinventing Lolli blogceliac disease, allergies, non-GMO, organic
Probably Rachel blogType 1 Diabetes, general living
Also check with your grocery store's website. Some chains like Giant Eagle and Krogers have data bases of foods that are gltuen-free. Do be watchful of ingredients if you have other allergies.Look for Certified Gluten-free.