Gourmand or Gourmet? – Brenda Wood

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Our summer series of articles from guest bloggers continues with Brenda Wood author of God, Glutton and You, a Bible study

“I ate a bunch of chocolate bars because I couldn’t get my hands on a bottle of whiskey. I stopped overeating because it gave me the same effects as the booze.” (A Recovering Alcoholic)

That statement opened the eyes of this long-time gourmand. A gourmand is a greedy, ravenous eater, a glutton, a slave to appetite, eating only because food is available. Such was I. Cold turnip, gravy by the quart or delicate desserts were all the same to me. Like my alcoholic friend, I learned that food was a drug. It calmed and satisfied me with its quantity, seldom with its taste.

When I asked Jesus into my life, He began to sort out my eating issues. Gradually he wooed me from 16 years of bulimia. Gently, he spoke to my lack of self-control. He whispered that everything was permissible, but that not everything was beneficial. He explained that He alone would be my master. (1 Corinthians 6:12-13)

When I tried to ignore my physical health while steeping myself in the spiritual, God pointed out that I do not have the right to neglect my bodily health.

‘He who is loose and slack in his work is brother to him who is a destroyer and he who does not use his endeavours to heal himself is brother to him who commits suicide’ (Proverbs 18:9,AMP).


So then you might well ask, “Brenda, are you thin?” No, I am not, but I am thinner. (Anyway, the sin is gluttony, not overweight. The Bible says we are ‘light’ in the Lord, Ephesians 5:8)! Little by little, God is changing me. I no longer binge and purge. I think of myself now as a gourmet, a connoisseur, one who carefully selects and savours every bite.

Most of the time, I’m in command of my taste buds and hunger because I have self-control. The Holy Spirit gives us the spiritual fruits of love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control but we have to live them out in the physical. The fruit of the Spirit is……………… self-control (self-restraint, continence). (Galatians 2:22-23, AMP)

The gourmand me used food as my comforter. The gourmet me delights in the comfort of the Holy Spirit. I want Him to fully enjoy His home. My body. His temple. (1 Corinthians 6:19-20)


Brenda Wood, Innisfil, Ontario
Author – God, Glutton and You, a Bible study
-Heartfelt, 366 Devotions for Commonsense Living

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3 thoughts on “Gourmand or Gourmet? – Brenda Wood

  1. Oh, my.Oh, my, my, my.Thank you for that succinct, articulate message. Things I know but …I read about myself in that. Not exactly the same, but in so many ways, exactly the same…

  2. I so appreciate your honesty. My eating problem was also about control, but it was about ME being in control and in power. When my life started feel like it was spiraling out of control – after a heartbreak I suffered in college, for example – I'd stop eating or practice severe purging to "control" my weight. I was certainly hungry, but my hunger had little to do with food. I had to pray and work hard at handing things over to God and to accepting my own limitations. My eating disorder wasn't about the sin of gluttony; it was about the sin of pride.God bless you, and thanks again for sharing.

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