Kicks

The other day I marveled at something I saw on Facebook. Someone posted a photo of a bottle of pop and three bags of candy, saying what a horrible day she had had and how her significant other knew how to make everything better.

I asked Chuck how waking up the next morning weighing three pounds more than you did when you went to bed would make everything better.

Don’t we all do that to ourselves, though?

“I’ve had such a bad day, I deserve this bag of candy/box of donuts/pizza (fill in the blank).”

Please, please, please let me feel that way about exercise.

The Bible says the heart is deceitfully wicked, but I kind of feel that way about my tongue. Is it my heart that wants the sugar or my tongue? What member of our bodies deceives us when it comes to food? What part of our bodies believes that the donut we are about to pop into our mouths is the answer to all our prayers? We think it will make us happy, but it’s only a small “kick.”

Oh, sure, it gives our endorphins a rush until that last gram of sugar dissolves on our tongue. Then we’re left with wanting more. Either that or we’re left with shame and guilt and extra pounds.

“Girl, you thought you found the answer
On that magic carpet ride last night,
But when you wake up in the mornin’
The world still gets you uptight.

Well, there’s nothin’ that you ain’t tried
To fill the emptiness inside,
But when you come back down, girl,
You still ain’t feelin’ right.

And don’t it seem like
Kicks just keep gettin’ harder to find
And all your kicks ain’t bringin’ you peace of mind
Before you find out it’s too late, girl,
You better get straight,

No, but not with kicks.
You just need help, girl.

Well, you think you’re gonna find yourself
A little piece of paradise,
But it ain’t happened yet,
So, girl, you better think twice.

Don’t you see, no matter what you do,
You’ll never run away from you,
And if you keep on runnin’
You’ll have to pay the price.

And don’t it seem like
Kicks just keep gettin’ harder to find
And all your kicks ain’t bringin’ you peace of mind
Before you find out it’s too late, girl,
You better get straight.

No, you don’t need kicks
To help you face the world each day.
That road goes nowhere.
I’m gonna help you find yourself another way.

Kicks just keep gettin’ harder to find
(Oh, you don’t need kicks, girl)
And all your kicks ain’t bringin’ you peace of mind
(You just need help, girl)
Before you find out it’s too late, girl
You better get straight

And don’t it seem like
Kicks just keep gettin’ harder to find
(Oh, you don’t need kicks, girl)
And all your kicks ain’t bringin’ you peace of mind
(You just need help, girl)
Before you find out it’s too late, girl
You better get straight.”

Thank you, Paul Revere and the Raiders, for that important public service announcement about food.

Remember, food is your fuel, not your friend, not your entertainment, not your drug. You don’t need it for kicks–because kicks just keep getting harder to find. It’s true. It takes more and more to satisfy whatever it is you’re seeking to gain from it.

Life and Death Are in the Power of the Tongue

Who remembers the old proverb, “Life and death are in the power of the tongue: and they that love it shall eat the fruit thereof”?

I always understood this proverb to be all about words and how we use our words either to build up or to destroy, but I have been thinking these past couple of weeks about the tongue’s power over my body as well.

The tongue is a selfish member. My tongue doesn’t care if I have diabetes. My tongue doesn’t care about my heart, my joints, my feet or anything else. My tongue cares about one thing: my tongue. My tongue always looks out for number one.

“Oh, that tastes good! Gimme some more of that!” My tongue doesn’t care how many grams of sugar are in something or how many grams of fat or how many chemicals or unpronounceable ingredients or how processed something is. My tongue wants whatever makes my tongue happy.

My tongue doesn’t care if my stomach is saying, “Enough already. I don’t think I can eat even one more bite.” My tongue thinks, “Well, there’s still at least three bites left in the bowl, and I’m having them all!”

My tongue doesn’t care if my joints are inflamed and ache. My tongue doesn’t care if my feet are numb or even if they end up being amputated. My tongue is indeed selfish and not a friend to me or to any part of my body, and sometimes it is necessary to put my tongue in timeout.

It is time for me to esteem other members of my body more highly than my tongue.

I am not doing myself any favors when I give in to the temper tantrums of my tongue. My tongue should not always get its way.

“Deny yourself and follow Me,” Jesus said. I am ashamed to say that I have spent a great deal of my life following my tongue. What a sad commentary. What a poor testimony.

“Live as though your life depends on it.”

“Eat your food like medicine or someday you will eat your medicine like food.”

Sometimes you need to tell your tongue, “Be quiet, you big baby. Stop thinking of yourself all the time and be kind to the other members of your body.”

The tongue is so small and yet it yields so much power–the power over life and death.