Effective Spiritual Food Requires The Right Ingredients
Effective spiritual food requires the right ingredients. Brad Hewey talks about the spiritual food that provides the right nourishment for ongoing spiritual growth.
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My wife and I have been doing a pretty good job lately in terms of eating a healthy and well-balanced diet. We’re not on a diet per say, but just making a conscious effort to eat foods that are higher in protein, fiber and minerals, and lower in overall calories, sugar and saturated fats. We look forward to the weekends, as that’s when we treat ourselves to a few of the things that we keep away from the table throughout the week.
Dontcha just love the smell of freshly baked bread or cake…. pie…or cookies just out of the oven? The aroma from any of these home baked goodies can fill an entire house with a sweet enticing fragrance that engages the senses and triggers a carb craving. My wife turns out consistently delicious deserts and has been making in my opinion, the world’s best carrot cake for over 25 years. I’m making myself hungry now. I like to tinker in the kitchen on occasion myself and I have my own lineup of treats that I declare to be my own in-house specialties. But with that said, I’m not that experienced with the nuances of baking. Actually, it’s probably not the nuances, it’s more like the fundamentals. I’m a bit of a “let’s try it this way this time” baker, which though I get points for creativity, I lose points for consistency. And consistency with baking is the thing that matters most. Let’s face it, you have a recipe in front of you for a reason…. its been proven to deliver the perfect balance of taste and texture. So, when you deviate from the ingredient list, your end result will bear the effects.
Feeding Our Soul With the Right Ingredients
Now a biscuit whose ingredients have been carelessly or negligently tossed together may smell glorious as its rising up in the oven, it may look like a perfect biscuit, but if there’s too much baking soda in the overall….it will be clearly reflected in the taste. I’ve seen this happen time and time again when I’m a bit careless with the recipe, or a bit too experimental with the ingredients. And thinking about this, reminds us of our spiritual lives, and how important it is to feed our soul with the right ingredients.
The Right Ingredients for Spiritual Food
The bible tells us the right ingredients come from “every word that proceedeth out of the mouth of God” For Christians desiring to lead a life pleasing to God, to walk the walk and talk the talk, it comes down to a solid diet on the right ingredients, spiritual food that is what God desires we seek for our sustenance. This isn’t to be replaced with compromised ingredients that just resemble spiritual food.
Sometimes we are fooled or misled by the look of something. That perfect looking biscuit may just be that; “perfect looking.” Looking just like every other biscuit, but with improper ingredients, whether through negligence or willful experimentation, it will not taste as it should, nor provide nourishment in the way intended.
The Bible is gods living word. It is one of the key ingredients that constitute the recipe for maintaining a healthy Christian walk, a walk that is not only able to be sustained, but able to mature and grow. When we skip breakfast, and skip lunch, we are pretty well famished when it comes time for dinner. If we then skip dinner, and neglect to put any food into our body for the entire day, we have in fact been on a “fast”.
Fasting as a Form of Spiritual Food
We don’t fast very often these days. It was a much more common form of penance and practice in older times. Yet as Christians, we are quite often found to be in a mode of fasting when it comes to feeding ourselves on God’s word….and it’s not just daily fasting, we can literally starve ourselves for periods of a week, 2 weeks or more.
Prayer is another key ingredient to a healthy spiritual life in Christ. We have the most powerful mode of communication at our disposal, one on one communication with our Heavenly Father, through the act of prayer. When Jesus was preparing his disciples for the days ahead when he would no longer be with them, he promised that he would send another, which is the comforter. The bible tells us that the Holy Spirit is our intercessor, crying out to God on our behalf with groanings and utterances before we ever form the words. The spirit leads us and guides in prayer; that we can cry out to him, we can beseech him on behalf of others, we can fall to our knees in sheer praise and worship, simply in awe of him: that he is God. If the ingredient of prayer… like the ingredient of the WORD; is neglected in our recipe for a healthy life in Christ, it may not be completely visible to others, but we ourselves will feel the hollow effects.
Spiritual Food and Fellowship
Fellowship. How often are we reminded in God’s word of the need to be in fellowship, communing in one accord with like-minded believers. Yet this is one of the ingredients in the recipe for good Christian living that is most often neglected. How many church buildings are struggling to keep the doors open because of a lack of desire on the part of Christians to gather unto the name of the Lord Jesus Christ. And in saying that, we do not question the salvation of those who are seldom, or never in attendance, but we are reminded by the words of the apostle Paul that avoiding or falling away from fellowship is a real to detriment to spiritual growth. “Not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together, as the manner of some is; but exhorting one another: and so much the more, as ye see the day approaching.”
When we fall away as witnesses to the love and power of God, and the deliverance from sin through Jesus his Son, we are weakening the fellowship and the spirit of exhortation that should be upon every believer.
As we consider today, the analogy of tangible ingredients in relation to a spirit filled life, unmistakably the ingredients most visible and tangible are before us every Lords Day; when God Spreads his table of remembrance before us, the physical loaf and cup… symbolic representation of Jesus physical body and blood that were offered in our place on the cross at Calvary. How intrinsically powerful and beautiful are these emblems, and that Jesus himself instituted this ordinance of remembrance, with tangible, edible substances that would personify for all generations, the body and the blood of the world’s only Savior.
God’s Perfect Recipe
God has provided a complete and perfect recipe, harmonious in its ingredient list, that serves to be the complete sustenance for all of mankind. For those who have never experienced the life changing power of forgiveness through Jesus Christ, all the ingredients point to “one God and one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus”.
For those of us who know him as our master, as our Lord and Savior, let’s be reminded that we have always before us, the right recipe for a healthy life in Christ. He calls us unto obedience, and that we are to “draw near to him with a true heart in full assurance of faith, having our hearts sprinkled from an evil conscience and our bodies washed with pure water” Heb 10:22
Brad offers up practical, scriptural advice from a perspective borne out of everyday life encounters. As we live and move and have our being…it’s the individual life lessons that most often present the greatest challenges, but can yield the richest blessings. We’ve all, as Christians had those faith affirming moments, where we’ve had an overwhelming sense of God’s spirit, or his very presence “at a particular but, maybe random time”.
Brad was born and still resides in a small community in the Annapolis Valley of Nova Scotia, where he and his wife Karen raised their 3 children. Brad & Karen fellowship at the Greenland Bible Chapel, where Brad serves as an elder. Brad loves meeting and engaging with people. His background in sales has provided opportunities to travel throughout the US and Canada, networking with people from all walks of life. Brad is a singer/songwriter, and has recorded 3 Christian albums. Songs from his “Brighter Day” release, have aired on Christian Radio stations across Canada and two of Brad’s albums are on HopeStreamRadio’s playlist.
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Images Courtesy Of:
Food – lukasbieri
Boy & Bible – Free-Photos
Praying Hands – congerdesign
Communion – ikendyl