No, I don’t mention this in the context of male-female relations. That horse has been slaughtered over here many times.
Oh noes. This is about a larger problem.
I used to joke about how I always thought “Full Gospel” was a reference to the size of pastoral waistlines. In fact, I often wondered if Dunlop’s Disease (“stomach dun-lopped over my belt”) was a prerequisite for being a pastor.
But it’s no longer a joking matter.
Not long before I got married, JRC, one of the members in my youth group–during my tour of duty as a youth minister–died at age 34 from complications of Type II diabetes that had long been exacerbated by his chronic obesity.
Just last week, a friend of mine–CD–from a previous church life died at age 36 from congestive heart failure. No one knew he had it, until he developed pneumonia and ended up in the hospital, where the docs discovered that his heart was dangerously weak. He had no chance.
CD was a cheerful guy, albeit socially awkward because he was mentally handicapped. But CD was also quite rotund: he was a heavy eater–he was one of those guys who would raid the potlucks and go for the all-you-can-eat buffets. While obesity does not always cause CHF, I’d hazard a very educated guess that his lifestyle was a huge contributory factor.
I say none of this to pile onto CD or JRC. They were each mentally not quite all there; my gripe was the larger culture–including their own parents–who coddled them too much and enabled their lifestyles.
At the same time, their cases bring home a larger issue that–I must confess–Christians as a group need to address soberly.
No, I’m not the food police. Nor have I any desire to micromanage what you put into your mouth.
At the same time, last time I checked my bible, gluttony is a sin. And while all obesity is not the result of gluttony, a heck of a lot of it in the Church is. (If you disagree, then fine, but then it is on you to show that Christians who attend church regularly have a genetic issue that facilitates this more so than Buddhists.)
I DO put the blame squarely on the pastors in this one. It pisses me off, because their negligence is feeding a culture that is leading to higher morbidity and loss of vitality, on top of presenting a mockery of a witness for the Gospel.