Watch those wants

June 24, 2013 | 15 comments

I eat out frequently because of my extensive traveling, and I’ve had to pray a lot about food choices along the way because the food options handy are often very poor.

One lesson I’m learning when sitting down in a restaurant and previewing the menu for ordering a meal is to NOT ask the question, “What do I want?” It’s a glutton trap!

If I ask, “What do I want?” my eye darts to the cinnamon French toast dripping in maple syrup and loaded with whipped cream and berries, or the hamburger mounded with toppings, cheese and a plate of fries on the side, and of course, dessert! How about the Wall of China slab of chocolate cake (big enough for 4), or cheese cake rich in dense calories to top it all off!

I don’t have a problem with sampling the above, and I do, but getting into a mindless routine of indulging large amounts of the heavy fat/sugar/salt genre is not a healthy life-style, in my way of thinking. And when you’re traveling, always on the run, it takes effort and diligence to prevent slipping into bad habits.

And asking the question, “What do I want?” is a slippery slope to start on, let me tell you, especially if our “wants” haven’t been purified enough to keep us from making poor split decisions.

So, I’m learning to ask the question, “What should I order?” rather than “What do I want?” And it works, at least for me. It challenges me to listen to the voice of Wisdom within for direction when making choices, rather than unleashing whatever sensual desire happens to pop into my thought at the moment. And when I’m honest with that voice of Wisdom within, I make choices I don’t feel guilty about later. I feel good.


15 thoughts on “Watch those wants”

  1. Hi Evan, when it comes to choosing a dish or even a type of restaurant many times I ask myself: what would be the best choice for me ?
    When I think of “the best” automatically thoughts pop up showing which food would suit best for me in that particular moment and also to which extent I can indulge myelf or not.:)
    When we think of choosing the best, it is letting God´s light influence our decisions, correct ?

  2. When Jim McGrew was lecturing , and I, his wife traveled with him. we would always share a meal … and that would be either way before or after the lecture. Several tiimes we even had a
    bacon/lettuce and tomato sandwich for breakfast! God guides, even to the selection of meals!
    Dot . from Arkansas Blaaatitar

  3. Food is not a power. The belief of what food does or doesn’t do is not about the food, but about the belief. I feel that when we label food “healthy” or “not healthy” we are making it a power. We are then on a slippery slope of limiting our healing ability. There is a wonderful testimony at this link ( where retired Army Colonel (and Christian Scientist) Janet Horton discusses how she had to take a physical exam with the Army, and how the doctor was amazed that she had never taken a drug, or medicine. The doctor was shocked to find her in such wonderful health, and asked her what she ate. She admitted that she pretty much would eat what she wanted, and stated “I never fear my food.”

    Examining salt content or fat content or sugar content or calories, etc., etc., is fearing food, and giving it power to hurt us. Here are 2 citations from Mary Baker Eddy that have helped me be a better “thought watcher” (versus weight watcher) when it comes to food:

    “As power divine is the healer, why should mortals concern themselves with the chemistry of food? Jesus said: ‘Take no thought what ye shall eat.’” Rud. 12:21

    “You say that you have not slept well or have overeaten. You are a law unto yourself. Saying this and believing it, you will suffer in proportion to your belief and fear. Your sufferings are not the penalty for having broken a law of matter, for it is a law of mortal mind which you have disobeyed. You say or think, because you have partaken of salt fish, that you must be thirsty, and you are thirsty accordingly, while the opposite belief would produce the opposite result.” SH 385:22

  4. As a Truck driver I appreciate this insight. You just put in words what I have tried to convey this to rookie drivers for years, but never had the correct words for it.

    Thank you. Hope you don’t mind me sharing these words of wisdom.

  5. Evan, this time you hit a nerve. I can’t stand the thoughts about the dangers of eating this food or that. Or what’s good for you or not. I became interested in C/S in 1962. I was born in 1936 just coming out of the Great Depression. We ate what we wanted to, with out any question what is good or what was not. Not just myself, but my whole family of Uncles, Aunts, Cousins and Friends. All of us grew up strong & healthy without this calorie mentality that’s going on today. We enjoyed eating, not to get away from anything but just enjoying. Oh! how I wish we were back to those days, where weight and exercise and red meat did not factor in our life style.

  6. Evan, many thanks for this insight and perspective on a challenge I also face regularly. Agree that this isn’t a matter of letting food have power, but listening for Mind’s direction to eat food wisely vs mindless glutony. Very helpful to hear your prayerful approach!

  7. I “eat what is set before me”. As a mom, I shop and cook what is balanced, poultry, fish, ground grass-fed beef, no hormones added,for spaghetti sauce. Greens, veggies, salad, fruits. -Lots of milk, cottage cheese, greek yogurt, cheese. Oatmeal, Cheerios, muesli, etc. and a light sprinkle of goodies. Mostly whole foods, and nothing with too many chemicals on the ingredients list. Cocoa , for instance, says cocoa, sugar.
    Nothing that is pitched to kids, with cartoons and chemicals.
    We don’t analyze it.

  8. Wonderful thoughts expressed today. Thanks to all.
    On long driving trips, or even when just out and about, I often go into a grocery store and get a prepared salad. They usually give a time/date stamp on them. I like them because they are smaller than restaurant salads, and on the way to the check stand, I purchase a small container of milk. Traveling has been much improved since I started doing this.

  9. I appreciate Evan’s practical common-sense idea here. I was recently at an Association Day for class-taught Christian Sciencists, and believe me, far too many there are seriously obese and really need help with this. Telling them to “Take no thought for what ye shall eat” is not a kindness. Evan’s practical idea here is a much better kindness.

    Anyway, I think that when Jesus said that about “take no thought”, he was referring to “supply” of meals, not to the nutritional quality of any particular foods. Today we need to be wise about the nutritional quality of foods, because so much of what is sold to us as “food” is really just “junk” with no real nutrition. By the way that applies to most burger-and-fries meals which are just junk food, full of fat, cholesterol, salt, very little nutrition.

  10. Evan, I always appreciate your thoughts and insights. However, in this instance I agree with the “Anonymous” posting that starts ” Food is not a power. The belief of what food does or doesn’t do is not about the food, but about the belief.”
    And Mary Baker Eddy quote in SH 385:22. I think it is a disservice to yourself and others to hold out a concept that supports the illusion…there is power in the matter called food and the effect it has on the matter called body. And what is this about feeling Guilty later? I don’t mean to be rude, but maybe some prayer and rewriting this Spiritview article so it truly is ad View of Spirit.

  11. While it is true that food has no power to influence our health, it is also true it has no power to make us happy. It has no power good or bad. Food cannot satisfy cravings, tempt us with “sweetness”,cause desire or indulgence, cure depression, resolve guilt or any of the other many reasons one may ” over indulge”. We must be honest with ourselves. Indulging while saying food has no power is hypocritical. Stating truths is not enough, we must work at demonstrating these truths. Thank you Evan for giving some practical ways to help demonstrate our dominion over the belief that food has the ability to give us anything at all. Good or bad. Period.

  12. I like the idea that God is guiding me in everything I do — work, relationships, activities. I read once of a practitioner knowing that God would guide her as to what to wear each day! This surprised me, but then I thought, “Why not?” Can we do anything and NOT be guided by God? So why wouldn’t He guide us in our food choices, too.

    Really, He is imparting wisdom, not whispering, “Order the salad.” If we listen and attune ourselves spiritually, everything we do — including our food choices — is God-guided. I love it!

  13. To Livinglight,

    I don’t think you quite caught the message of this blog. I didn’t write that food has power. I was writing about the beliefs we associate with food, that when we indulge those beliefs, food does seem to have power over us. The beliefs that heavy amounts of sugar/fat/salt are “good,” is a struggle for many people. It’s naive to blindly indulge these beliefs and say, “take no thought,” and then suffer. The beliefs need to be exposed. Some people, perhaps yourself, have mastered this already, so what I wrote may seem out of line. But for those struggling immensely with these beliefs, its a baby step in a healthier direction that can help them see what is at work behind the scenes of thought and needs to be brought to the surface.

    I understand what you’re saying about food has no power. You are correct. That is a truth. But that kind of a blanket statement to most people sounds unreasonable. It needs to be broken down into more metaphysical sized-bites that helps them get into its demonstration. That’s what I’m striving to do.

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