Wednesday, June 12, 2013

Hidden Art: Chapter Eight

It's Wednesday and I'm late with this post. I've been putting it off because the topic is FOOD. And that's a problematic issue in our family's life.
Adam and I are fat; we just are. We're overweight, obese, portly, plump, call it what you will. We've had a problematic relationship with food. Adam would say he's committed the sin of gluttony much of his life. How does one turn sin into "hidden art"?

Does one have to be slim and eat like a bird before one can discover the hidden art in food? I don't know. I know Adam had a huge wake up call two weeks ago about his health, and he has a radically changed regimen now. His caloric intake, his portion sizes, his snacking ... it's all diminished profoundly. He's excited. He's gonna be thin, he says! I may lose some weight in a support role - haha!

But here's the rub: when you have to count every calorie that goes in your mouth and weigh out your portions with a scale and enter it all in an app on your iPad ... how in the world can that be hidden art?

We're a family that's into this:
chocolate iced coffee
 and this ...
We like our food, if you didn't notice :)
Many of Schaeffer's recommendations are already part of our weekly lives:  market fresh food, home baked bread, homemade soups and jams, and this past week Adam made his first batch of pickles! We have to avoid making cakes and pies. And we do eat our leftovers every day. We don't waste; we eat economically because we must. Adam makes the evening meals and he puts love, thought, and imagination into what he serves us. We invite friends over to share our food, and enjoy communication with our children at the table every evening. I think we do a good job following Schaeffer's advice in chapter eight.

But it's made us obese.

Adam discovered that his problem with food is this: he likes the taste. He wanted that taste over and over. He ate large portions and had seconds because he wanted more experience of whatever taste he was enjoying. It is kind of a insatiable greed for pleasures of flavor. Now he is trying to get lots of flavor in his food still, in each bite, using lower calorie foods and much smaller portions.

It would help to live at a place like L'Abri with hundreds of people to feed. A good cook could enjoy baking pies and cakes every day and be sure others would gobble them up! As Adam says, a cook needs eaters!! I'm sure Edith had many mouths to feed and got lots of exercise simply by the work she did every day, serving everyone.

I'm sorry to say that our joyful appreciation of food has led to health problems and even sin. Schaeffer doesn't discuss this aspect of food. (I wish she did.) But here's to hoping we can lose weight, be healthy, and still find the joy and beauty in food!

Read more posts about chapter eight over at Ordo Amoris.


  1. Yes, this IS a tricky thing. Food is fuel and somedays I don't need much fuel because I am not moving around very much! Portions are so big these days. We have way too much available to us and somehow I think that naturals foods are supposed to taste just right but when everything is sauced up and seasoned up, it's just too much. I mean, do we ever eat two apples? No but we MIGHT eat two cinnamon rolls. I'm reading two books about hospitality vs. entertaining. I have a lot to learn in this area.

  2. I really commiserate with what you're saying. It IS hard to have an appropriate relationship with food nowadays.

  3. Sending you and Adam virtual encouragement and sincere hope for all the best in your new approach to food and finding the hidden art therein ~

    I believe it is there!

  4. A beautifully honest post about a common problem. I am praying (and cheering) you on. :)

  5. Thank you for sharing your heart with us in this post. You are not alone, and you've encouraged many of us!

    A wake up call is always a scary thing, but it sounds like you are jumping in and taking it seriously. Finding ways to 'artfully'share and prepare healthy and nutritious food, while being more aware of portion size will be rewarding and satisfying.

    Good luck, and God be with you in this new adventure!

  6. I love your authenticity in this post. This is a problem many people share, but no one can solve it by ignoring it. I'll be cheering you and your husband on as you walk through this difficult (but, in the end, rewarding) time.

  7. Oh, I am hearing your heart in this...and I am there with you. I have been challenged in reading this chapter to be more diligent in finding the joy in serving simple foods. It is oh-so-hard to find the balance when you love to cook and serve and eat.

  8. Oh, I know what you are saying! When my Hubby finally decided he felt so rotten he had to lose weight, I did too as I supported his decision. What happened was incredible. Basically, we ate meat and veggies. When we started Bountiful Baskets, it made a huge difference to us. We got things in our baskets that we would have never afforded at the grocery store. Beautiful fruits and veggies. Low calorie, good for you, lots of variety. It made eating right a pleasure.

    I've always made our bread and we love it, but we've cut back on that too. I still make it, but less of it. I still like to make dessert, but we only have it on Sundays usually. I try to invite the kids over so we don't have much leftover. It works.

    I wish you all success and good health as you make those important lifestyle changes. You're going to feel SO GOOD!!!


  9. I appreciate your honest post a lot! Food is a struggle for me, too. I hope you write more as you are able/inclined/have things revealed to you. Blessings.

  10. Yes, food can be such a struggle. I personally have a weight that I refuse to go over and have been a part of Weight Watchers for over 3 years. This helps me keep food in perspective.


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