Thursday, January 22, 2015

When Friction Starts a Fire {This Day Thursday:Renewal}

We tend to think of our values as neat nouns that fit in specific lists. The “values” list. And the “not values” list. At least that is how I tend to see them and explain them when called upon to do so. We don’t speak or act in certain ways because they just aren’t in line with our values. Some values are at the top and are indispensible. Some nearer the bottom and open to debate.

And then it happens, one value bumps into another. It budges in line. I value life more than money. Time more than money. But when money is required to enrich our lives or schedule, I’m forced to examine which I value more at this point.

It sounds technical, but it’s really not. Choices is all we call it. Maybe you sit and ask yourself, “Which do I value more?” Or maybe you just ask, “Can I afford to do this?” But what you are doing is weighing your values in the balances and seeing which holds more weight.

Where am I going with this? It has come into the forefront of my mind a lot in the last months as I’ve embarked on a brand new thought process with food. And no, this isn’t one of those “Watch out, she is on her diet again” moments. And yes, even if you have the healthiest body image in the world, you can still benefit from this line of thought.

Painful emotional times are often the result of friction between values in real life. For example, my RA is greatly influenced by the foods I put in my mouth. That caused some friction based on what I should eat and what I wanted to eat. I valued the health of my joints and the subsequent happiness of my home more than I valued bread (regular bread that is). So I eliminated gluten.

Cutting out gluten offered some relief, but not enough. So I took another step- no grains. Again, I valued health and happiness over overnight oatmeal (really, really yummy overnight oatmeal), so the sacrifice was made.

All the way until I found myself completing my first Whole30 and pursuing a paleo lifestyle minus the evolutionary theory.

It’s been a while since I researched anything so thoroughly, but in the process I came to a greater understanding of how awesome our bodies are and how God made us with such care.

But God also showed me more and more about the value of His law in my life, His Gospel in my renewal, His Word in my diet, and His wisdom in my decisions.

I will take four posts (at least that is the plan) to reflect on these things, because they matter to me and I believe they matter to you. But in case you are skeptical, take a moment to answer these questions:

* Am I sin-sick?
* Am I making choices that are inconsistent with my values, or harmful to those I value?
* Am I wearied by the junk I see happening around me?
* Am I struggling to see God's love in the events in my life?
* Am I enslaved to the bad choices I make?
* Am I in need of encouragment to keep making the good choices I am making?

Really you could have just answered the first question, but if you answered "yes" to any of these please stick with me in the coming weeks. God might not be calling you to a pantry overhaul, but He is calling you to a fulfilling, satisfying life with Him starting now- and I would love to walk with you.