My Dog and the Diet Plan from Hell
The household gods utter nonsense, and the diviners see lies; they tell false dreams and give empty consolation. Zechariah 10:2
Our dog has become overweight because he eats whatever I give him, and I have apparently been giving him too much. To correct this, I give him fewer calories and he loses weight. It’s a pretty simple concept. The same principle applies to me as well. To lose weight, I too, must consume fewer calories than I expend.
Still though, every time I see a diet plan that promises I can eat whatever I desire and still lose weight, I’m hopeful. I know how weight loss works, but I long to be able to eat anything and everything while avoiding the destructive consequences. This isn’t just about food. This is my life. I want to live my way, while eluding the painful repercussions of my destructive appetites.
This is the lie that Satan whispered to Eve in the garden. Go Ahead, eat it. The consequences won’t be that bad. You’ll actually be better off. You’ll be more like God. That can’t be a bad thing, right? You can have what you want and get away with it. This is Satan’s diet plan and it is literally straight from the jaws of hell.
This seems to be the same delusion confronted by Zechariah in today’s passage. In it, he condemned his people for following their false idols which promised wealth, fertility, and success, while delivering nothing but misery and emptiness. Lured by their own appetites, the Israelites followed the lie that they could circumvent God’s way, pursuing whatever they desired, while avoiding the consequences. Zechariah pointed out the futility of following anything but God.
Like my dog, we cannot eat whatever we want and avoid gaining weight. Anyone that tries to tell us that we can continually indulge in our self-destructive appetites while escaping the painful consequences is peddling the same lie as Satan himself. If we want to know life, faith, and recovery, we don’t get there by following ourselves. Our way is what caused our misery in the first place. We get where we truly want to go, only by daily abandoning our path for God’s.