False Comfort and True Joy

I am a creature of habit. I wake up at the same time each day, follow the same morning routine (cup of coffee plus time with Jesus), eat the same thing for breakfast, etc.

I love routine. I thrive on it. It brings me comfort, and boy do I love to be comfortable!

However, routines are created and habits are learned, and there was a time when my health was suffering because of the habits in my life that related to food.

As a teenager, if I had a rough day or had gotten upset, I’d go straight to the kitchen and make a pan of brownies to feel better. I would even sit on the couch with an entire bag of chips and drown my sorrows watching mindless TV until the bag was empty. I had created the habit of turning to food for comfort, and as I got older, this became a common “routine.”

After a breakup or a stressful day at work, I felt that I “deserved” a treat. I sought out comfort food to ease the pain. But after the food was gone, the brief moment of comfort was too. It was replaced with new guilt and shame over my gluttony in addition to the sadness I had already been experiencing. The band aid of brownies had been ripped off, and all that was left was a gaping wound that never healed. I finally hit a wall in my early twenties, while struggling with exhaustion and found out I had extremely high blood pressure and things had to change. But again, instead of asking God to come in and help me, I tried to do things on my own...because that was what made me comfortable. I did everything the wrong way - fad diets, counting calories, cutting carbs. One day after walking into a Christian book store and picking up a copy of “The Daniel Plan” book, God spoke to me. I could almost hear His voice as He told me that I hadn’t been taking care of my body with my gluttony, and I wasn’t taking care of in my restrictive state either. It was then that I decided to get my nutrition coaching certification and learn how to do this the RIGHT way, with God in the center of it all, and then teach other women to do the same.

God is such an important part of the journey when it comes to maintaining a healthy weight, yet I would rarely think to ask Him for help in this area. I would continually turn to food for comfort instead of the one true Comforter. Long term satisfaction and TRUE joy are only found in Jesus.

Instead of drowning my sorrows in a bowl of ice cream, I started learning to call out His name and let it all go, trusting that He will be faithful because that’s who He is. He is a faithful, loving God and He will work all things for our good and His glory.

Maybe you are like me and struggle or have struggled with your relationship with food. The fact of the matter is, we shouldn’t have a relationship with food at all. Our relationships are built around the food, not with it. God gave us food to enjoy, to use for fellowship with other believers, and to nourish our bodies so that we may go out and fulfill our greater purpose. But somewhere along the way, Satan has used food to lure us into his trap and twist what God meant for good.

I encourage you to spend some time with the Lord reflecting on YOUR source of comfort and joy. Are you spending your time seeking false comfort or are you investing in things that bring about true joy? Ask God to reveal to you any areas where Satan may have twisted your view of things that God meant for good. God cares about the deep dark places in your life and wants you to live in the light. He has His arm outstretched, just waiting for you to take it and begin feasting on the Bread of Life - your true source of comfort and joy.

1 Comment

Amanda Smith - February 20th, 2023 at 8:42am

This spoke to my heart this morning! I am a registered dietitian for 13 years now, but I still secretly struggle with food and over eating. I am the epitome of “do as I say, not as I do.” I have been making better attempts to fill the God shaped hole in my heart with prayer and meditation rather than snacks. When the reality of the sin of gluttony hit me, so did the shame. But you are so right, we can only over come through His power, not our own.