That’s right. This is a sermon about “sufficient sweetness.” What do you do when your body sends you the “full” signal? Keep right on eating or call a halt? Part of the problem is that we have come to think of eating as a way to be entertained. Now it is clear in Scripture that good food is a wonderful way to have great fellowship with others. The problem is that we allow ourselves to think of eating primarily as entertainment rather than nourishment. When you view it this way, munching becomes a way to change your moods; cooking becomes your source of comfort.
Those Basic Assumptions
When our most basic assumptions about eating are out of whack, we can’t really expect to draw the right conclusions.
For instance, one summer evening several years ago, my family was enjoying a wonderful campout near Cincinnati. The children were asleep and my wife and I were reading under the dining canopy we had set up. In a short while, I read 50 pages of 1776 by David McCullough, and almost the entire time, I was munching away on pistachios. Those wonderful, salty nuts added real zest to the occasion and I thoughtlessly downed them while I was reading. Suddenly, in a start, I sat up and looked wide-eyed at my wife.
She asked, “what is wrong?”
I replied, “the Lord just spoke to me!”
She responded, “Well, what did He say?”
I answered by quoting Proverbs 25:16!
“Have you found honey? Eat only so much as is sufficient for you, lest you be filled therewith and vomit it up.”
You see, I was just reading a terrific book about the American Revolution, and suddenly the Lord spoke to me through the Scriptures. That kind of thing has happened to me frequently. On this occasion, it brought me up short and I pushed away the bag of pistachios.
What stopped my snacking?
So what was it about Proverbs 25:16 that stopped my snacking?
I was crunching away for contentment. I felt as if pistachios were giving me peace! And in a moment’s time, the Word of God helped me to arrest my impulses. My faith interrupted my feelings. Proverbs 25:16 emphasizes “sufficiency” instead of saturation. When I reach “full,” there is no need to go farther. Now if you begin to think in these terms, you will begin to re-interpret the signals your body sends you. You can begin to discern the difference between “hunger pings” and “hunger pangs.” But, as the verse warns, if you snack right on past sufficiency, be prepared to feel sick. I recommend that you memorize this proverb to see if the Lord doesn’t bring it to your mind as well. God’s Word has a marvelous ability to reign in our feelings and impulses.
In this proverb, honey can represent any and all food. (Have you found pizza??) We were created by God to live for His Glory and enjoy His Creation. We were not created to sicken ourselves with a saturation of sweetness.
So ends this sermon on “sufficient sweetness.” Hope you enjoyed this “Honey Homily.”
–Pastor Gordon Dickson, Calvary Baptist Church, Findlay, Ohio