Amusement Park: Food Booths
Amalia’s mouth watered at the tantalizing smells wafting out of the food booths. Grabbing Jesus’ hand, she pulled Him with her as she headed for the nearest booth.
“Oooo… I love cotton candy! Can we get some, please?”
“Cotton candy is pretty sweet, but is that what you really need right now?”
“No, but it sure does taste good!”
“That it does.” He laughed. “And there are times when cotton candy is the perfect thing to eat. Right now, though, I think you should have something a bit more substantial.”
Pulling her gaze from the rows of softly colored sparkly treats, she followed Jesus as He walked towards the next booth. Shiny apples, coated with creamy caramel, and covered with a variety of fun toppings, greeted her gaze.
“Yummy! These are perfect! Sweet, yet apples also full of vitamins I want the one with chopped nuts… no, the one with the cookie crumbs…”
“These are more nourishing, that’s true. They make a wonderful snack, and will satisfy you for the moment, but you’ll soon be hungry again. Aren’t you hungry for a full meal?”
“Yes, but these look really good.”
“If you really want one, I’m not going to stop you. You have the freedom to choose whatever you want. But I know there’s something better for you a little further on.”
Amalia looked from Jesus to the caramel apples, and back to Jesus. “Oh… okay… You’re probably right.”
They passed several more booths offering tasty snacks – and each time Amalia had to resist the temptation to settle on something less than what Jesus wanted for her.
Finally they approached a booth offering a wide variety of meals. “Ah, here you go.” Jesus said. “Just what you need.”
Amalia frowned at the menu board. Despite the names, such as Hamburger Heaven, Happy Hot Dog, Taco Tower, and Perfect Pizza, none sounded as fun as the treats they had passed. “Which do I have I choose?”
“That’s totally up to you. They each have a meat or protein, and some vegetables, and that’s important to build your body. If you only ate sweets, your body would grow weak.” Jesus paused, and then added, “You know, choosing what to read in the Bible is kind of like choosing what to eat. You need to read more than just the sweet, fun scriptures. You know, the satisfying ones that make you feel good. There’s nothing wrong with those, in fact, they’re quite important. But you also need to read the meatier verses. The ones that you have to chew on – the ones that make you have to think and sometimes make hard choices. You may not like them as much, and they may not go down as easily as a milkshake, but they are also very important for your spiritual health.”
Amalia thought about that for a few minutes. “Hmmm… I like some foods better than others, and some foods I don’t like at all. It’s the same with scriptures. I don’t like the ones that talk about being persecuted for doing right, or having to control my body and mind, or of God’s jealousy and judgment. I much prefer the ones about God loving me and taking care of me. But if I only read the pleasant ones, I wouldn’t have a balanced view of God or of living a spiritual life.”
“Oh, oh, oh..” Amalia almost danced. “I know something else! Just like treats are fine in between the meals that I need for a strong and healthy body, short readings, such as Verse of the Day and daily devotionals, are good, but need to be in between longer readings, such as whole chapters at a time. And, just like I need to eat a wide variety of foods for optimum physical health, I can do that spiritually by reading through the whole Bible.”
She looked back at the menu board with a new attitude. “That Blazing Barbeque sandwich plate with the salad and sweet potato fries looks pretty good! And then…” she turned to Jesus with a grin, “we’ll go get some cotton candy.”
The Bible Says…
The Bible tells us to increase in knowledge of God.
Col 1:10 so as to walk in a manner worthy of the Lord, fully pleasing to him: bearing fruit in every good work and increasing in the knowledge of God.
One way we do that is by reading God’s Word, which is sometimes compared to eating.
Ps 119:103 How sweet are your words to my taste, sweeter than honey to my mouth!
Ps 34:8 Oh, taste and see that the LORD is good! Blessed is the man who takes refuge in him!
Proverbs 2 6 For the Lord gives wisdom; from his mouth comes knowledge and understanding.
Proverbs 2:10 for wisdom comes into your heart, and knowledge will be pleasant for your soul.
Jer 3:15 And I will give you shepherds after my own heart, who will feed you with knowledge and understanding.
Rev. 3:20 Behold, I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears my voice and opens the door, I will come in to him and eat with him, and he with me.
Using that analogy, I thought it would be interesting to compare the way we read the Bible to the way we eat. Thus Amalia’s lesson with the food today.
How do you feed upon God’s Word?