Detestable Food

The really strange thing is that I wrote this blog before I started my 30-day subscription to Kathy’s Maniacal Eating Plan (KMEP), and, of course, the title has nothing to do with the taste of the weird grains and vegetables that she has me eating. I guess it is just prophetic … read on, if your curiosity is piqued.

Allergy season has arrived with a vengeance, and so I begin the unhappy practice of waking in the night, sneezing uncontrollably, and rubbing at my eyes until I look like someone from a horror comic book. About three years ago I started taking Allegra, and I found that I could survive if I started early and stayed current with generous doses of the medicine.

This year I managed to get my doctor to agree that a dosage for a ‘normal’ adult was not quite enough for someone of my girth and weight, but even so, the medicine doesn’t quite suppress the symptoms for the whole 24-hour period.

One happy side effect is that once allergy season is over, I am very thankful for my health for a couple of months afterward.

Recently, I was perusing the book of Numbers, and I read about the episode of the Bronze Snake. As was their frequent practice, the Israelites were complaining against God and Moses, this time about the food. As you may recall, God provided manna for the Israelites during their 40-plus year sojourn in the wilderness, before they were permitted to enter the promised land. As Numbers 19 records, they complained and said, “We’re tired of this detestable food!”

It doesn’t look all that detestable to me. A little maple syrup …

Sometimes I am amazed that any Israelites survived to enter the land of Canaan. Just a few verses before, a good chunk of the tribe of Levi had been swallowed up by the earth for their presumption in challenging God’s selection of Moses and Aaron. Considering the great mercy that God had for the people in providing manna for upwards of two million people every day, it seems the height of stupidity and ungratefulness to complain about it.

While I was thinking about those rascally Israelites, feeling a bit superior, the thought occurred to me that I have a lot in common with that rebellious people. Every time I complain to God (and I do it more often than I would care to admit) aren’t I, in some sense, doing the very same thing that they did, spitting on His grace and mercy and presuming to second-guess His sovereign and majestic will?

Ah, but I do it in such an enlightened, twenty-first century style, couching my complaints as ‘prayers of supplication’ and stopping short (in my words, at least) of open defiance against God.

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