July 31 – A Farewell To Bacon

Accept other believers who are weak in faith, and don’t argue with them about what they think is right or wrong. For instance, one person believes it’s all right to eat anything. But another believer with a sensitive conscience will eat only vegetables. Those who feel free to eat anything must not look down on those who don’t. And those who don’t eat certain foods must not condemn those who do, for God has accepted them.
(Romans 14:1-3) 

Read: 2 Chronicles 29:1-36, Romans 14:1-23, Psalm 24:1-10, Proverbs 20:12

Relate: I miss bacon. I haven’t had a single piece of bacon in over a year now. In fact, apart from a couple short trips back to the US one last summer and one the year before, I haven’t had any bacon in well over three years. It isn’t that I have anything against bacon. Quite the opposite. I am thoroughly convinced that bacon will be a featured item at the marriage supper of the Lamb. (That’s the big feast we will all have in heaven at the end of time). It is just that, some things are more important to me than food and drink.

You see, when I first moved here to Turkey, I decided that I would restrict myself to a Halal diet. In case you are wondering Halal is the Muslim version of Kosher. For the most part that means that I eat no pig products and drink no alcohol. The alcohol I could honestly take or leave. Not a problem. The bacon… not quite as easy.

React: As much as I do love bacon, one thing I love even more is my neighbor. If God has called me to a country where 99.8 percent of the population is Muslim. If he has called me to a city with two million Muslims and less than 200 Christians, then He has decided that I could do without a little bacon in my life. Nobody around me actually demands that I conform to their dietary standards. They are often surprised to learn that I do. But they are also appreciative. It is one less wall standing between me and them. They are just a little more willing to hear what I have to say because they know just a little more that I respect them and what they do and believe. That alone is more valuable than mountains of bacon.

What are you willing to put aside for the sake of the Kingdom? Are your rights and privileges and freedom more important than the gospel? Just because we can do something does not mean we should do it.

Respond:

Dear God,
For us, You set aside heaven to be born in a barn. You put aside Your rights to reside in glory to sweat and bleed and get sick and suffer and ultimately to be tortured and crucified. I want to be more like You. In a world where everyone is clinging to their rights and freedoms and privileges, help me to set aside them all so that nothing would stand between Your love and Your world. Let me be as radically concerned for them as You are for me. Even if that means I never eat bacon again.
Amen 

 

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16 thoughts on “July 31 – A Farewell To Bacon

  1. I agree that “just because we can do something doesn’t mean we should” but I’m not sure I agree with your reasons. Thank you for giving me something to contemplate and take to the Lord in prayer. This is just one example that came to my mind: My mom is Catholic and chooses to not eat meat on Fridays…all year long…just because. I don’t now why…that’s between her and God I suppose. I actually live with her right now but in no way do I feel obligated to join her in that and I don’t believe God has called me to either. Maybe I’m wrong?

    • I think it’s important not to mistake the form of action the adherent takes with the gesture of live and faith it represents. I don’t think a restriction on pork is any more “correct” than one on eating meat on a Friday. I do not follow those particular ideas, but I can understand the why. It is an act of loving submission to the higher power, to the Creator. When practiced as a private act between adherent and God, it’s beautiful. When turned into a social value that must be followed, it becomes an ugly, manipulative human construct.

    • From my experience living in a Catholic dominated Northeast US, “fish Fridays” is in no way close to the way dietary regulations are connected with identity for Muslims and Jews.

      For me here, there are so many ways in which there are cultural barriers I cannot avoid that I will do everything possible to remove any barriers I can. For you it might be something completely different. What can you do, or stop doing, so that you can be a better friend and neighbor for your neighbors and coworkers and yes, your mom? The core idea is to have a mindset to putting others “needs and rights” before your own for the Kingdom’s sake.

      • Okay, I can see that. Always learning…and open to His promptings. I have made other sacrifices in the name of putting others needs and rights before mine, so I do get it. Thanks for that reminder…it’s never about us but always about Him and how we can represent Him to those who need Him but do not know Him. 😊

  2. Its wonderful to meet like minded people in Christ. I completely agree with you on not having bacon in Turkey. (It is indeed a beautiful country)

  3. Reblogged this on DebDays and commented:
    Such Kindness to hold out something we want in order to connect with people who find it offensive. Great example of sacrificial love of God

    • The fake bacon you can get here tastes so different from the real thing that it doesn’t even deserve the name bacon. I have had that once or twice as a pizza topping or an ingredient on my entre, but I barely even notice, “oh yeah, this is supposed to be bacon”. It is just to bland and should more accurately be named “processed meat product”

      • I agree with you! I’ve tried turkey bacon and soy seasoning bits, but aside from being salty, it tastes nothing like pork bacon, which I do treat myself to (lean and thick) when I crave it. I’m not Jewish or Muslim or vegan. I’m just old and not supposed to have the fat or the salt! LOL

        • Last summer I had the opportunity to go back to NY for a short visit. My mom picked me up from the airport and before we made it home I had a baconator from Wendy’s and then we grabbed a couple 2 liters of MtDew to bring home. Here in Turkey I go without, but when I am back home my reason for doing so is gone.

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