It’s often hard to live a full life of faith when our world is so compartmentalized and organized according to our calendars. I often tell my husband that if it is not on the calendar, it does not exist. The problem is that when faith is reduced to an element on the calendar- church on Sunday, Bible study on Monday, and a few squeezed in minutes each day for Bible reading or prayer at dinner, we’re missing out on so much of the experience of our faith.
Over the past couple of years, I’ve worked to integrate my faith into more areas of my life. I tend to be an all or nothing kind of person, but I’ve realized that attitude has kept me from a lot of joy. It’s impossible to do it all at once, and it’s left me rather frustrated. I learned that I have to take baby steps and accept what I can do where I’m at. As I’ve continued to grow, I’ve been able to add more into my life.
What does this have to do with food? Everything.
The more I explore my role in God’s world, the more I recognize how integral food is to that role. From responsible production and consumption, and even to the disposal of our waste, we have a responsibility, not just to ourselves but to the rest of God’s creation. Many of us don’t consider things like where our food comes from, or whether or not all of the pieces surrounding our food honors God.
I began searching for more God-friendly ways of living. Remember what I said about my all or nothing approach to life? Going completely organic and green was hard, and to be honest, I couldn’t do it. I tried and failed many times until I finally accepted that I can’t do it all. I started with baby steps- like growing a few things in my garden. My efforts have increased from there.
This year, our family began keeping chickens. I loved the idea of fresh, healthy eggs that came from a source that I could see. Based on a lot of things I’ve read, eggs from backyard chickens are better for you than what I buy in the store. Plus, by not purchasing store eggs and using the ones from my own chickens, I am reducing the negative environmental impact. Okay, so I won’t end global warming with a few chickens in my backyard, but I am doing something as opposed to doing nothing.
Step by step, we’re living a little greener. I don’t have a deadline on my calendar for when my family is fully green, and I suspect that we’ll take a few steps back as we move forward. There’s no checklist for honoring God with my food. But all of our small decisions eventually add up to until in the end, we find our faith experience richer having invited God to our table with more than just a prayer.
With four active kids ages 9-25, a dog, and some chickens, Danica Favorite is never short on inspiration for her latest story, whether entertaining a live audience or crafting her latest novel. She and her family make their home in Denver, Colorado.
Julie Steele says
Small decisions eventually add up….
So true, Danica. So envious of your chickens!
Thanks Julie! We had to fight to get ours, but the law in our area finally changed, so now we have chickens. 🙂
Brandy Heineman says
Great thoughts! I was thinking of the deeper implications of food recently too, specifically how deeply it contributes to our sense of home and family. I enjoyed your post. 🙂
Valerie Comer says
Thank you for coming by, Brandy!
Danica and Valerie, I’ve had the same types of realizations about food honoring God. I’ve also started to think in terms of eating the food that God made. I even try to purchase produce that’s grown locally (on Long Island). Our supermarket has a section for local produce from the small farms and I’ve noticed the little imperfections in the veggies grown by local truck farmers, such as the spot on the zucchini where it touched the ground. That’s a food made by God.
I live in a huge urban city and it’s not possible to have my own chickens, though I’m aware of a family from the Caribbean that does, but that’s not totally legal. So, I do the best I can buying eggs from chickens totally vegetarian fed and cage free wherever possible. I look for organic meats, meats without hormones.
It’s been a year and I feel better physically. Not that I felt bad, but I feel better.
Valerie Comer says
Thanks so much for joining the discussion, Nike! Like you, I feel healthier now that we’re concentrating on healthy local REAL food. I can feel the discomfort when I stray from our ideal diet.