Spiritual Anorexia 

Anorexia nervosa is extreme body emaciation caused by an emotional and psychological aversion to food and eating.  The condition occurs predominantly in young women whose body weight may drop to half of normal.

In contrast to victims of famine, sufferers from anorexia are often able to maintain their strength and daily activities at approximately normal levels.  They appear to be unconcerned with their undernourished state and do not feel hungry.  In layman’s terms, a young woman with anorexia avoids food.

Founder and Chairman of Men’s Leadership Ministries, Texas, Pastor Steve Farrar, says: “I am convinced there is such a thing as spiritual anorexia—and the enemy (Satan), has been incredibly successful in spreading it.  In the spiritual realm, it is not partial to women.  Thousands of Christian men and women have spiritual anorexia, and that is why they are ineffective in leading their families.

What is spiritual anorexia?

Spiritual Anorexia is an aversion to reading the scriptures.

We have all seen tragic pictures of starving children in Somalia.  Many of them are so weak they cannot stand up.  Anorexic men are just as weak spiritually as those children are physically.  Why?  They both lack nutritious food.  The words of Jesus in Matthew 4:4 prove the point.  “Man does not live on bread alone, but on every word that comes from mouth of God.”

Read carefully Deuteronomy 32: 45, 46, 47. Moses said to Israel, “Take to heart all the words I have solemnly declared to you this day, so that you may command your children to obey carefully all the words of this law.  They are not just idle words for you—they are your life.”  No wonder the enemy (Satan) wants to keep us from scriptures.  It may be his primary goal.  This is one of his most consistent tactics and he is relentless with it.  He does not want us to read God’s word.  He wants us spiritually anorexic.

A committed Christian, George Gallup, did a survey and came up with the following results. He says: “I am amazed at the low level of Bible knowledge. It is shocking to see that only 42% know that Jesus was the one who delivered the sermon on the mount—are they reading the Bible?  From our studies, the Bible is clearly not being read.  It is revered, but not read.”  The vast majority of men believe that Bible is inspired by God.  Most of them have Bibles. They rarely read it, except at church, when they remember to bring it.  Steve Farrar says: “I asked more than one thousand Christian men across the United States of America (USA) how often in an average week they interacted with the Lord through the scriptures. 45% reported once a week or less.  The majority of these men are committed Christians and attend church more than once a week.  Most are considered pillars of their local congregation.  Nearly 50% of the Christian men are spiritually anorexic. How can we solve this?

Make a personal commitment to begin each day reading the scripture.

You must spent minimum 15 minutes to read the Bible and another 15 minutes to meditate on it daily preferably early morning.  Reading the Bible and meditating on it will serve the following functions;

  1. First, it reminds me that there is a God who is ruling the affairs of my life. Society lives as though there is no God, and I need to be reminded before I face the day that there is a God who is in control of my life and circumstances.
  2. Second, I need to be reminded of what is true.

God’s word gives me a dose of reality.  There is right and wrong.  There are consequences for making wrong choices; the Ten Commandments are still the standard for life.  I am not to repay evil for evil etc.  My morning briefing gives a perspective that I don’t get in the world.  A Christian man in this society is swimming upstream against the current.  Without the constant nutrition of the word, he will soon be tired and dragged off by the sheer force of the current.

The Bible gives me the power to tell the good from the bad, the genuine from the counterfeit, and to prefer the good and the genuine to the bad and counterfeit.

3.Third, the morning briefing reinforces my convictions.

It is not easy to hold onto convictions when you are in the minority. You and I live in a society that is constantly trying to chip away our biblical convictions. We are in a war with the enemy for our families and we cannot afford to compromise the divine laws given to us.

As I read and ponder the scriptures, I am forced to evaluate my convictions. Perhaps some of them don’t agree with God’s word and need to be changed. Or may be I have started to compromise convictions I have always held. As I am exposed to scriptures, I find encouragement to stand firm in the truth and not negotiate what the Bible clearly teaches. Every day, I have to make choices based on my convictions. That is why it is vital not to miss the morning briefing. I need God’s input to make consistently right choices.

I must feed on scripture every day, just as a soldier on the front lines must eat k rations. I must have a steady diet of spiritual vitamins and minerals if I am going to be in any condition to fight. I cannot afford to be spiritually anorexic when I am given the responsibility to lead my family. A malnourished man is worthless in hand-to-hand combat. Because he has no strength, he is easy prey for the enemy (Satan).


Rose Corner
…with Rose Hansey (rosehansey@gmail.com)

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