Thursday, September 1, 2011

Eating Out... To the Glory of God?

"So, whether you eat or drink, or whatever you do, do all to the glory of God."-1 Cor. 10:31
Ahhhh... eating out. My friend Beth posted on her blog confessing she eats out often. She shared that it works for her life stage of no kids and enough paycheck. Then I noticed that most of her friends who thought it was great also clarified that it makes sense since she doesn't have children. I searched to see if any of her friends with kids admitted that they also eat out a lot. None did.

That was awkward for me because I'm a (pregnant) mom with 2 kids. And we eat out out. Often. Sometimes more than once a week. Our friends and family all know this. Suddenly, I wondered if people who know me judge me for eating out. Then I panicked that maybe it's wrong to eat out and I've just been blind to it. So I called Andy (who laughed at me) and then prayed. God did a sweet work in my heart to reassure me that He is well pleased with me. I'm reminded that my heart and intentionality in life is so important. Eating out may be a good or bad choice for us in different seasons and for different reasons and it's good to evaluate and do what please God. But when we feel the freedom to eat out, like anything else we do, it should be to the glory of God. So the question that leaves me with is: How can I glorify God as we eat out?

I wrote a list of a few ways I believe God is glorified as our family eats out. This blog series is not meant to defend our choice to eat out or to encourage others to eat out. I'm sharing because I believe it is good for us to evaluate all aspects of our daily life, asking Him what best sets our hearts on Him. It is good to look hard at how we spend our days to identify ways that don't honor God and seek instead for what will direct our hearts in Him. For our family, in some situations it means giving up things we enjoy because they are a snare/idol. But in many, evaluating our daily life has lead to having a firmer intentionality towards God in daily life as we seek Him through the things He gives us that we enjoy.

Here's are the main areas I listed that I'll post on:
1) Family Meals Out- Is it a benefit or hindrance?
2) Finances- Can we really afford it?
3) Being planted- Sharing Christ Intentionally as we eat out


Beth said...

Nice, Ginny! I think the main thing that I LOVE about eating out is just the absence of preparation and clean up. That's honestly why we go out so much, I think. We have a super small kitchen and the mess of cooking gets overwhelming really quickly. So it's a blessing to both of us (and a time saver!) when we can skip those steps. :) I'm looking forward to the other things you have to say about this!

Mary said...

I think there's a bigger issue than eat out versus eat in that tends to show itself, especially with busy families with children.

Eating together is huge. And from personal experience and observation, most of the familes who eat out do so as a group unit. Couples only or those with children. Even better when you see multiple generations at one table. They are families eating together.

I admit, eating out isn't really in my budget, either time or cash-wise, but I also find myself eating alone after having scattered meals around the day, each family member eating alone or with non-family.

It becomes to easy to blame a schedule and overlook the lack of family bonding.

If eating out gives you the opportunity to have family time, I think it's a positive.

Megan said... issue I've grappled with also. We eat out often too, and we've wondered not only about whether we can afford it, but is it the best use of our (God's) money - of course, this question applies to everything we spend, and oh how I love to spend...OK now you're really making me think and evaluate! Great post Gin, I'm looking forward to the rest! Love you

Ginny said...

Mary- That's such a good topic to bring up. I think I forget that because my boys are still young and we have minimal activities.