Brothers and sisters, join in imitating me, and observe those who live according to the example you have in us. For many live as enemies of the cross of Christ; I have often told you of them, and now I tell you even with tears. Their end is destruction; their god is the belly; and their glory is in their shame; their minds are set on earthly things. But our citizenship is in heaven, and it is from there that we are expecting a Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ. He will transform the body of our humiliation that it may be conformed to the body of his glory, by the power that also enables him to make all things subject to himself.
In staff meeting this week, Matthew mentioned the airport in Haiti and how when mission teams disembark from their planes the first thing they see is a fence lined with hungry people hoping to receive a little something of value from the arriving passengers. His memory reminded me that when I went to Haiti, we were warned beforehand not to give anything to anyone in the airport or at the fence but go straight into the waiting van or we would be swamped with people who may even get angry because they hoped to receive a helping hand too. We were there to help and our warning seemed counter intuitive but seeing their slender bodies and their hands reaching through the fence helped me realize the extent of their overwhelming poverty.
Over and over again on that trip I felt like a glutton as I compared our simple meals to their lack of food. I will never forget the look of horror on our guide’s face as I cleaned up after breakfast and without a second thought poured the leftover milk in my cereal bowl down the drain. He didn’t say a word but I realized that my easily obtainable food and wasteful eating habits had to be examined…again.
The word gluttony is derived from the Latin gluttire meaning to gulp down or swallow and means over-indulgence and cover-consumption of food or drink. So when do we cross the line? Is it a sin to order two desserts? Think about it.