God gave me an idea a couple of years ago called “Platesharing,” which can help Christian hunger charities and may help you lose weight at the same time. I’ll give more details in a moment, but first let me tell you what re-sparked the idea:
A TBYT reader named Eileen shared a powerful video with me by author Lisa Bevere. In the video, Lisa mentioned the sin of Sodom. Now before you think “I already know what it was,” you may not know the whole story. Here is what Ezekiel 16:49-50 says Sodom’s sins were:
Look, this was the iniquity of your sister Sodom: She and her daughter had pride, fullness of food, and abundance of idleness; neither did she strengthen the hand of the poor and needy. And they were haughty and committed abomination before Me; therefore I took them away as I saw fit (NKJV).
Did you catch the part about “fullness of food, and abundance of idleness; neither did she strengthen the hand of the poor and needy”?
The people were so self-focused and concerned about their own comfort that they ignored the needs of the poor.
One of the things God put on my heart as I sought His help with my overeating was to take a portion of our food budget and start donating it to a hunger relief organization. I realized that the money I was spending on snack and junk food for myself could be put to better use helping feed someone else who didn’t have any food.
I once read a statistic that overeating costs the average U.S. family $498 per year. That works out to $41.50 per month!
If overeating is a problem for you, have you considered where is that $41.50 going? Is it going to an over-full plate? Second helpings? Fast food? Pizza deliveries? Vending machines? Chips, cookies, crackers, candy, or sodas? Hey, I’m just naming where some of my money used to go!
Do me a favor: Examine your food spending starting today. Your last 4 grocery receipts would be a good place to start. Just simply review the receipt and see if you have any non-essential food items on there. Circle those items and add up the amounts spent.
Then, over the next month, keep a log of any additional food spending, such as the money you might spend on the vending machine, in a coffee shop, fast food, etc. Add it up and see how much excess you have.
Finally, prayerfully consider donating the monetary equivalent or whatever amount God puts on your heart to a local food bank or hunger relief organization.
Here are three Christian hunger charities that I recommend because they are all registered with the Evangelical Council for Financial Accountability (ECFA) and have high ratings at Charitynavigator.org, another group that measures financial accountability:
To help you deal with overeating habits as you are striving to share your food with the needy in the meantime, I recommend you read the following articles:
- The Secret Shame of Overeating (the toxic thinking behind the habit)
- The Belief Systems that Keep you Overweight
- Things to Do Besides Eating
God bless you!
I love this! I go out every Friday night with hot dogs, bags of chips and bottles of water and bibles. I target places where I used to roam the streets using drugs, and downtown where there are a lot of homeless. I have had thoughts of the hot dogs not being very nutritious, but Its a way for me to love on them, break the ice so I can tell them about Jesus, and teach them how the Holy Spirit taught me to deal with dope cravings, and pray with them. These folks don’t have a home, most sleep under bridges or in abandonded bldgs., so these hot dogs do just fine
What a great act of repentence and turning. Great idea and thanks for sharing!
Thank you for this Kim. It definitely gives me something to think about.
You are so right on. God has been impressing on me about our obsession with comfort.(just bought a featherbed) ha. ..but, food is the big issue. We eat out a lot and I believe we are too extravagant in our choices. Giving with some sacrifice provides much joy.
When our children were home, we sometimes had a special supper of just rice and then donated the food money. It was extremely meaningful and we always were blessed. We have a saying in our family, ” It’s good to want things.”
“Platesharing” is straight out of Isaiah 58, especially verse seven. Sharing our surfeit of food is more personal than giving out of extra funds. God knows how to get to our heart! Love this. May God set us all free.
I just sat here and thought of one of the ways that has helped me in the past and i am attempting to do again is to cut out most cokes and drink more water. A bottled coke at my work cost 1.35 per bottle and if i bought two of those a day it would be approx 80 per month (including weekend cokes which would probably put it above 80 dollars). Although I do try and give some each month to various charities, i’m sure this would help provide even more food to the hungry while helping me lose weight and better my health. Thanks for sharing this.
This is a wonderful idea! One of the sins we North American Christians seldom talk about is gluttony and excess. Doing this would be a great exercise in gaining freedom from greed and growing in compassion for the poor. A win/win!