Pandemic Living

A friend sent me a list of funny sayings the other day and several reflected my feelings of late.   Here’s one:  Now that I’ve lived during a pandemic, I understand why most Renaissance paintings are of chubby women laying around without a bra.

Just to be clear, I do NOT recline naked on my sofa.  And I’m not Lady Godiva (though I do like the chocolates…)  Bare-foot, yes.  Bra-less, no. Even the thought of going back to the 60s women’s lib days makes me start singing the Brownie song “Do Your Ears Hang Low”.   I’m more a jeans and tee-shirt/comfy tunic sort of “girl”.

Sometimes I eat because I’m hungry.  Sometimes I eat when I’m bored.  Sometimes I eat when I’m stressed.  Mention the word “diet” and I start thinking about apple fritters and BBQ potato chips, brownies and …. Well, you get the picture.  My car fob is in my hand and I’m heading out the door for the grocery store.  Or I start cooking again and we’re back to the “What’s in the pan, Fran?”  “Diet” is a word-trigger that shoots my thoughts to FOOD!  There’s a nice little diner just around the corner…

I know I’m not the only one struggling with this issue.  The difficulty isn’t necessarily due to a less active lifestyle because many of us are still out walking and doing the regular chores.  We’ve even added activities like gardening (which is the best exercise in the world!), chasing down and teaching children, remodeling or redecorating our homes, and purging the excess stuff we’ve accumulated.  Some people have even fixed up their houses, put them on the market and moved!

Many have sought and fought to find the magical formula to losing weight.  Shhhh.  It’s this:   Eat less calories than you burn, and the pounds fall away. Add to that a change of focus.

When I thought about it, I realized my “hunger” isn’t for food, but for God, for reconnecting with friends, for community.  Being locked down may limit our interactions with the latter two, but God is always available.  I can always feast on His Word.  I can sit and talk to Him.  I can ask Him why we’re all going through this pandemic. Nothing is happenstance.  God is sovereign. He is speaking to us.  The trouble is we’re too busy listening to “experts” and not listening to Him.

The truth is the more I feast on God’s Word, the more I want to “eat” at His table (and walk away from my own). His food satisfies the restless hunger in me.  And I can go back for as many helpings as I want!

And you know what?  I’m noticing things that have been in front of me all along.  Every Sunday we drive by a dairy on the way to church.  All those happy California cows dining on “salad” – and not a skinny one in the herd.