Appetites

Posted on November 10, 2015 at 7:37 am by heatherscherer No Comment

I have had a hard week. Several people whom I love have had a crises. It has been an emotionally taxing time and so I had a craving for chocolate chip cookie dough. My appetite yearned for the cookie dough for days and I finally made it and sat with a spoon eating out of the bowl. My husband came home and wondered where the cookies were so I quickly made some. I recognize that this is an unhealthy way to deal with my emotions. I tried to fill my worry and fears up with cookie dough but it didn’t work. It really just left me feeling a little nauseous. One of my dearest friends, shops when she is emotionally wrought. This is the way her mother handled strong emotions and so she grew up with the understanding that shopping makes everything better. But it doesn’t and as a young woman she began the cycle of shopping and then returning until she finally overcame the appetite for shopping away her fears, grief and worries.

Paul Escamilla in his book “longing for enough in a culture of more” says that appetites and longings are different things and that we sometimes get them confused. Appetites are typically things we need like food and shelter and the longer that we don’t have them the stronger they get. Longings are typically things that can last for a lifetime. They are our hopes and dreams, our desires and relationships. He points out that we sometimes think our longings are appetites. They get louder and louder until we give in to them. My cookie dough is an example of this. What I really longed for was that the people I loved would be happy and whole again. I tried to fill that longing, which I have no control over, with cookie dough.

I would have been better off turning to scripture and it would not have had all the calories! John 14:27 says “Peace I leave with you; my peace I give to you. Not as the world gives do I give to you. Let not your hearts be troubled, neither let them be afraid.” and Luke 12:25 says “And which of you by being anxious can add a single hour to his span of life?” Being anxious and troubled caused me to long for peace and healing for my friends and even myself. I should have prayed my way through these strong emotions and turned to God with my longing. Instead I let it convince me it was an appetite that I needed to fill. One of the reasons I have always participated in a church is that others remind me to let go of my anxiety and they even pray for me in it. I have found peace in community and my troubles don’t seem so large. I invite you to examine what unhealthy appetites you might have. How do you handle stress and anxiety? What are your longings that you are trying to stuff with something else?Facebooktwitterby feather

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