Fake Strawberries by April Motl

Fake Strawberries
April Motl
Jeremiah 17:9

What does it say is in this?!

In an effort to be healthier, our family has learned to read labels. Many of us have become aware that just because something says it's healthy doesn't necessarily mean it is healthy. The process of figuring out all the nuances in food labeling and production methods, while trying to shop on a budget, is daunting!

While reading one of my favorite healthy-eating blogs, I came across an article describing the ingredients in ice cream (Yeah. I know. You're thinking, Don't ruin ice cream for me!) Many of the common ingredients used to flavor ice cream were chemicals also used for stuff like solvents, lice killer, and various cleaners.

I was shocked. Most of us would say, ''I can taste the difference between a cleaning product and strawberries!'' But can we?

It got me to thinking. I trust my taste buds to tell me what's in the food I eat. I expect that if it tastes and smells like strawberries, then it is. And if it looks and feels like strawberries, then you'd be pretty hard pressed to convince me otherwise. But sure enough, there in my delicious ice cream is a bunch of ingredients I would have never guessed. And that's not the end of it.

It's one thing if we eat things we really weren't meant to. It's another thing when ''ingredients'' creep into our hearts and minds to influence our worldview, how we think about and trust God, how we think about the way we embrace our roles as women, how we should raise our kids, manage our marriages, etc. Many of us rely on our internal compass to red flag statements in movies, books, and conversations. But is that really enough?

If someone can fool me into thinking a solvent tastes like strawberries, I'd have to admit that even though it seems like my internal barometer should be enough, it's not.

The book of Judges records what happens when we all do what we think is right, without relying wholly and humbly on God to show us what it right. Over and over again God's people did, ''what was right in their own eyes'' and time and time again they ended up wounded and oppressed.

It's all too easy for us to think that as long as our motive is good, then what we do, think and feel will be right. Yet that was the very thing that got us into the first mess in history. Eve bit into the temptation to believe that if it looked ''good'' to her, then her perspective supersed ...

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