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Late-Night Snacks

Categories: Pastors Blog

A word for graduates, grandparents, and the local pastor who love his late-night snack runs.

French fries; onion rings; fried _________ (just fill in the blank); fresh baked chocolate chip cookies; chocolate shakes; ice cream (any flavor except mocha); big, giant bowls of pre-sweetened cereal

Broccoli; carrots; baked chicken; raw spinach;

A word for graduates, grandparents, and the local pastor who love his late-night snack runs.

French fries; onion rings; fried _________ (just fill in the blank); fresh baked chocolate chip cookies; chocolate shakes; ice cream (any flavor except mocha); big, giant bowls of pre-sweetened cereal

Broccoli; carrots; baked chicken; raw spinach; palm sized portions of whatever; whole grain; high fiber; organic

Two completely different lists right?  Do you notice the differences?  Duh!  One lists the things that I like to eat the best and the other lists items that are best for me to eat.  One list requires a decision, the exercise of discipline, and the ability to do what’s best over and above what I want.  One list is easy, seems to come naturally, and makes me feel better while I’m doing it.   I bet you can guess which list is which.

As I close in on the big 4-0, I am realizing that feeling good while I am eating is not near as beneficial as feeling good after I’ve eaten.   The feel-good eating experience is usually followed by late night rummaging for the antacid and that horrible rolling in my stomach as if there is a porcupine in there trying to get out.  The good feeling of eating a balanced, healthy meal is a great night’s sleep and the freedom from the regret that I was responsible for those nightmares of great giant cookie monsters attacking me while I eat ice cream by the truck loads.  Making good decisions is not easy.  The temptations of the feel-good experience is so strong, we rationalize our excuses and defend our behavior with lists of all the reasons why we deserve the feel-good experience.  It’s a deadly game that we play though.  I know that I have to feed my body the proper fuel for it to operate efficiently, and if I continuously make poor choices while standing in the light of the refrigerator I will suffer the consequences.

As I am sure you have already figured out this issue of good choices is not just about food.  If we only make decisions in this life based on what feels good we play a deadly game with the Devil, which we will most often lose.  But we are not the only ones who lose.  When we struggle to make good decisions everybody loses, our families, our community, and our church.  Just as poor eating habits can cut short a potentially productive life, bad decisions in life can cut short our impact on the families, communities, and churches where God has placed us.  Let me give you some keys to making decisions that will lengthen and deepen the impact of your life.

When making tough decisions ask yourself the following questions:

  • Can I ask God to bless this?
  • Can I encourage others to repeat this action?
  • Will this decision advance the gospel message?
  • Would I ask another to pray with me about doing what I am about to do?

The right decision may feel like putting that carrot in your mouth instead of the cookie, but remember we are not looking for the feel-good experience, but the good feeling that comes from knowing that you did the right thing.

David