Day 2 of the Apple Detox

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So today is actually Day 3, but I couldn’t post this yesterday for technical reasons. Anyway, stay tuned for Day 3 later!

If you’re unfamilar with the apple detox, it’s basically a thing where you eat nothing but apples for three days. Apples of the jenneting variety are recommended, like red delicious, but I myself am using the Arkansas Black as pictured above . It is supposed to detoxify your body, and hopefully your soul a little as well, leaving you refreshed and rejuvenated when it’s all over. On the night of the third day, you’re supposed to drink a couple table spoons to half  a cup (Edgar Cayce, who originally discovered the apple diet through divine intervention apparently, recommends half a cup). And this is suppose to flush out your colon, if you catch the drift.

On day one, I had a grand total of 6 apples. I felt okay in general, just a little weak and tired, but able to function. There where times when it was difficult to be cheerful. Only one bowel movement occurred, in case you are curious about the effect of the detox. This morning I have a darker yellow urine to report, which was a little alarming. “Why isn’t my body happy? I haven’t been giving it any junk!” is what crossed my mind. But I am trying to remain optimistic.

But I feel that I need to focus on reaping the spiritual benefits of the detox. Along with literally cleansing your body, I believe it can also cleanse your heart of a lot of the unnecessary junk that has built up over the years. It can be seen as a conquering of the flesh, that is, the desires of the body. The flesh can drive us to do crazy things, and if it is not tamed, it will control us for our whole lives. That is why Jesus died- to free us from this

to free us from this unfortunate reality.

When Jesus was wandering in wilderness for forty days, he had a familiar visitor, the Devil. Here’s a little snippet of their conversation:

The tempter came to him and said, “If you are the son of God, tell these stones to become bread.”

Jesus answered, “It is written: “ ‘Man shall not live on bread alone, but on every word that comes from the mouth of God.’ ”

-Matthew 4:3-4

Man shall not live on bread alone, I’ve always thought those were such powerful words. It is somewhat intuitive, but at the same time, it is a little contrary to our base desires. So what does this mean? It means that we must make every effort to tame our desires (I am definitely talking about MUCH more than food) and to “Die to ourselves.” I would not advise trying to fast for forty days. You’ll probably just die. If you read the rest of Matthew 4, there’s also a sentence about not “testing” God.

I’m not trying to make out that I’m all righteous because I’ve decided not to eat normal food for three days. I just think that there’s a lot to be learned from fasts and detoxes, as well as health benefits gained.

So probably the first lesson is to trust God. If you read the rest of Matthew, there are so many great illustrations of this principle. Matthew in general is just dense with information, not to say other books aren’t, but I think Matthew is one that is easier to decipher and appreciate for those of us who may not have the longest attention span (thanks to the media and pop culture).

Does this mean that I should stop stressing about the color of my urine? Probably. That I should stop worrying that the detox won’t work for me because I have some kind of disease? Yes. Because what is disease, but an abnormality of the flesh? And who healed diseases, um, Jesus! And what can separate me from the love of God (as it is written)? Nothing….

Well, I’ll tell you what happens tomorrow, God willing. Happy apple munching to all!

 

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Smile Darn You

Romans 12:15- Rejoice with those who rejoice, mourn with those who mourn.

Human emotion is often a mystery to us as Christians. Embrace it, validate it, shun it… huh? It’s hard sometimes. We want to be sympathetic. There is nothing wrong with that. We want to understand people… but that can mean understanding their sins, and that seems problematic because we are supposed to hate sin with a fiery passion (I would say fiery like Hell, but maybe Hell isn’t the best topic right now). I am inclined to believe that you can understand something without agreeing with it, but that’s just me.

Mourn with those who mourn, rejoice with those who rejoice. Okay, it sounds easy enough. But what does it really mean? Party with your happy friends, get bummed out with your sad friends? Does it mean that you shouldn’t tell a whiney loved one that he should try and see the bright side every once in a while?

From personal experience, I would say that in a lot of instances, sympathy goes a long way farther than rebuke. Compassion and sympathy are good and Biblical, as long as you are not justifying sin, rather you are just seeing something from another perspective and acknowledging that you could have found yourself in the same uncomfortable spot. 

When people sympathize with me, well, it makes me feel better, simplistic as it seems. It does not make me feel like I should continue to wallow in sadness. It often empowers me. I think, “you know, it’s really not all as bad as that. I can keep on going, I can get through this and LIVE.” 

But when people tell me to be happy… oh, man, I don’t want to do anything but be miserable for the rest of my life. It’s because I know already that I should be “happy” and grateful. Maybe if you think deep down that someone doesn’t know that, you may be able to gently steer him along towards the sunshine. But very gently.

That’s why we should sympathize with one another. And when all else fails, God will sympathize with us. If Jesus didn’t feel sorry for us sinners, He wouldn’t have given us a way out. He would have been like, “too bad you suckers.” He wants us to save us from the sin, because He knows that once we are disentangled, we can be free to do great things. The Lord is the great encourager. I just read how in 1 Kings 19, He sent an angel to cheer up Elijah when Elijah basically felt like dying. I think that’s a familiar enough feeling. And a cake even appeared for him to eat! What a nice gesture. And Elijah went on to fast for forty days and receive news on who was to be the next king of Israel. Can I get a REDEMPTION!

God will provide. He will encourage, enlighten, sustain, even sympathize. Just today, I got two of my prayers answered at once. He doesn’t want us to be miserable, even though it seems that way sometimes. He offers up his hand to us so we can stand, and He wants us to go forth and live.