Distinguishing Wants from Needs
By Carolyn Allen
Although it is early in the calendar year, Easter is nearly here. How vivid the story of his life and his teachings are as the days of this week, Holy Week, lead up to Easter Sunday. As the Master Teacher, he used one powerful teaching technique after another to literally change the world: His tool of questioning, with simple phrases and few words, often created vivid visual impressions that brought (and will always bring) his followers to new self-understanding and spiritual heights.
For example, as he concluded the Sermon on the Mount, he invited those that that pressed close to him to “ask, and it shall be given, seek and ye shall find, knock and it shall be opened unto you.”( (Matthew Chapter 7:7) Then he asked a question that not only reassures us of his love, but can easily change what we decide to put in our bodies for daily sustenance.
Today’s Scripture : “What man is there of you, whom if his son ask for bread, will give him a stone? Or if he ask for a fish, will he give him a serpent?” (Matthew 7:8-9)
The answer of course, is obvious: No loving parents would offer a rock or a snake to their precious, hungry child as food. Take this one step further, and this is a powerful tool for walking away from the donuts. It is helpful to separate our mind from our bodies and to view them not only as temples (I Corinthians 6:19-2) but also as stewardships, even as children that require not only love, but training and appropriate discipline to help them mature.
King Benjamin referred to these bodies as “the natural man” and explained the importance of becoming as a child :
For the natural man is an enemy to God, and has been from the fall of Adam, and will be, forever and ever, unless he yields to the enticings of the Holy Spirit, and putteth off the natural man and becometh a saint through the atonement of Christ the Lord, and becometh as a child, submissive, meek, humble, patient, full of love, willing to submit to all things which the Lord seeth fit to inflict upon him, even as a child doth submit to his father: (Mosiah 3:19)
Every thing we eat is a either 1) a response to a genuine need, be it physical, emotional or social or 2) simply a habit. It is easy to ask that child inside of us, even as we ask the children in our lives, one simple question, “What do you need?” to determine needs and change habits.
Whether we’re genuinely hungry and it’s time to eat, or we find ourselves with food on our minds and in our hands and mouths when it’s not time to eat, the question, “What do you need?” will instantly elicit life-sustaining bread, and not rocks.
The vivid picture of giving a child a rock or a snake can easily be compared to how we irresponsibly give ourselves oversized portions or inappropriate junk food at inappropriate times, not to mention the private indulgences that drain our health and spirits. One by one, these choices are rocks that eventually literally weigh us down and downright nasty snakes that literally destroy our health.
Inside each of us is a quiet voice that will tell us what we really need – when we care enough to ask. (If you need some guidance on wise nutrition and healthy living, www.MyPyramid.gov is a free and excellent resource for healthy weight loss. Based on your current weight, it will instantly determine your caloric needs and get you started.)
Quietly asking, “What do you need?” brings the answer of a large drink of water instead of a handful of chips when we’re preparing lunches for children.
Asking, “What do you need?” brings the answer of happy mingling in the crowd away from the buffet table at a gathering.
Asking, “What do you need?” can almost be a prayer!”
In fact, since today is St. Patrick’s Day here is one to bless you and help you provide life-giving, nourishing bread instead of stones to weight us down:
Irish Prayer for Weight Loss and Health :
May there always be work for your hands to do (Go get a craft project to get your hands busy and out of the cookies!)
May your purse always hold a coin or two (Go buy the nutritious foods your body is craving, as well as some sugarless gum and 40-calorie Tootsie Pops for a treat.)
May the sun always shine on your windowpane (Go exercise outdoors – if not, dance to the radio inside!)
May a rainbow be certain to follow each rain (We all have bad days; dump the guilt and quickly move on.)
May the hand of a friend be always near you (Call an old friend, or join us at MyWeightLosTeam.com – details on joining are at my website, www.MyWeightLossFriend.com .)
May God fill your heart with gladness to cheer you (It’s 0 calories to enjoy nature! Open your eyes to the emerging spring, the birds and their happy songs.)
Ask the question, hear the voice, and know that abundant blessings of health and fitness await. Say to yourself as you answer the question: “Health instead of rocks, fitness instead of snakes!”
Today’s Empowerment: “The voice inside of me knows what I need to do! I will ask, and it will answer.”
This is a dandy for your Easter Dinner. It’s great for not only the onions as mentioned, but other vegetables.
Herbed Creamed Onions
(Serves 4 at 90 calories)
1/2 Tbsp. margarine
1 pound small white onions, peeled
1 cup low-sod. chicken broth
1/2 cup skim milk
2 Tbsp. flour
1/4 tsp each: marjoram, rosemary, sage (all spices crumbled)
Dash of black pepper
1 Tbsp. minced parsley
- Coat a small skillet with Pam and heat for 30 seconds. Melt the margarine. Add the onions and cook, stirring, until golden. 5-7 minutes.
- In a small bowl, whisk together the chicken broth, milk and flour. Add to the skillet with marjoram, rosemary, sage and pepper.
- Cook, stirring constantly, or until the sauce has thickened. Cover and simmer on low for another 10-15 minutes, until onions are tender, stirring occasionally.
- Sprinkle with parsley.
(2 g Dietary Fiber; 90 calories; 3 g Fat; 15 g Carb)
2008 Meridian Magazine. All Rights Reserved.