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Monday, September 19, 2016

Worth the Calories?

The weekend has come to an end we have entered into a New Week with these words of wisdom. Read: Philippians 4:4-9 Bible in a Year: Ecclesiastes 1-3; 2 Corinthians 11:16-33 If anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things.—Philippians 4:8 I love egg roti prata, a popular pancake in my country of Singapore. So I was intrigued to read that a 125-pound (57 kg) person must run 5 miles (8 km) per hour for 30 minutes to burn 240 calories. That’s equivalent to only one egg roti prata. Ever since I started working out in the gym, those numbers have taken on a new significance for me. I find myself asking: Is this food worth the calories? While it is wise to watch our food consumption, it is even more important to watch our media consumption. Research shows that what we see can stay in our minds for a long time and influence our behavior. It has a “clingy effect,” sticking to us like that stubborn fat we find so hard to lose. With the wide variety of media content surrounding us today, we need to be discerning consumers. That doesn’t mean we read only Christian literature or watch only faith-related movies, but we are careful about what we allow our eyes to see. We might ask ourselves: Is this worth my time? In Philippians 4:8, the apostle Paul tells us in essence, “Feed your eyes and minds on things that are true, noble, just, pure, lovely, of good report, virtuous and praiseworthy.” This is a “diet” worthy of what Christ has done and is doing in us. —Poh Fang Chia Are my viewing habits enhancing my life or are they drawing me away from things that really matter? Help me, Lord, to make wise choices. The mind is formed by what it takes in. Will Durant INSIGHT: Philippians is one of Paul’s prison letters (written while a prisoner). Professor Reggie Kidd makes this observation: “Paul’s emotional state was complex. On the one hand, he was suffering. But on the other hand, he made a conscious decision to focus on the good things rather than on the bad things. And this choice helped him endure the sufferings of prison as well as his mistreatment at the hands of other preachers (see Phil. 1:17-18). And Paul’s advice in Philippians 4:6-8 was consistent with this attitude. . . . Thinking optimistically, and fighting against anxiety and discouragement, is a means of calling upon God to guard our hearts and minds. And therefore, it is also a means of persevering.”

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