Part of my sermon Sunday morning will deal with gluttony. Gluttony is not about one’s size. There are some big people in this world who are in total control of their diet. And there are some skinny people who are gluttonous.
I know because before my metabolism changed, I could eat whatever I wanted and it would not affect my body. As a matter of fact, when I was 6 foot 1 and 125 lbs., I tried to eat everything I could. I still could not put on weight. (That is not the case now, I assure you!)
I developed some bad habits. Can I confess to you my gluttony story?
When Judy and I first got married, she came to our apartment one evening and said, “I have great news.”
I asked her what that news was.
She told me, “I bought a box of chocolate pudding pops from the store.”
I said, “Oh, no. I wish you had not done that.”
She asked me, “Why?”
I said, “Because I cannot stop once I start. I love them so much I just keep on eating them. I could eat that whole box.”
She said, “You could not either! There is no way you keep that whole box.”
I said, “Yeah, I really could.”
She said, “Let's see you eat that whole box.”
I said, “Okay. But I am going to do this only to show you that I really mean what I say.”
I proceeded to eat the entire box of pudding pops.
I remember it as being a box of 12. Judy remembers it as being a box of 24. Either way, that was not a healthy thing for me to do.
Incidentally, a lot of times you'll hear about people doing something like that, and they get so sick, they will never eat another one again. I did not get sick. And I do enjoy them to this day. Moreover, I am happy to say that I have grown in Lord somewhat, and so now I can somewhat control myself. But there was a time when it was a struggle for me. And the best thing to do was to keep them out of the house.
What about you? Do you have your version of pudding pops that you have struggled with?
The Bible talks a lot about gluttony. There is a fascinating section in Proverbs 23 that goes like this:
1 If you sit down to eat with a ruler,
notice the food that is in front of you.
2 Control yourself
if you have a big appetite.
3 Don't be greedy for his fine foods,
because that food might be a trick…
6 Don't eat the food of selfish people;
don't be greedy for their fine foods.
7 Selfish people are always worrying
about how much the food costs.
They tell you, "Eat and drink,"
but they don't really mean it.
8 You will throw up the little you have eaten,
and you will have wasted your kind words (Proverbs 23:1-3, 6-8.) NCV
Another says, 19 Listen to me, my children! Be wise and have enough sense to follow the right path.
20 Don’t be a heavy drinker or stuff yourself with food.
21 It will make you feel drowsy, and you will end up poor with only rags to wear (Prov. 23:19-21.) CEV
We all know that gluttony is eating too much. However, do we know that gluttony is misdirected hunger? Christian minister Rick Ezell writes that the problem with gluttony is that it seeks to feed the soul with food for the body. It can cause a person to become so full in his stomach that he loses his appetite for God. A gluttonous person has not only a misdirected hunger but also a misplaced God.
Let God control your appetite for Food. If you do, he can control your other appetites as well.