Four years ago, my husband and I became Christians. Well, actually, we’d been Christians all our lives and had gone to church off and on as kids. He had a lot more church experience than I did. I believed in God and Jesus, but my family never really attended church more than a handful of times.
This blog is not going to be all about religion, by the way. I think of my religion as a very personal thing and am content to let people believe what they want to believe without forcing my opinions on them. But this has a connection to my real food journey, so bear with me a moment.
So we married in June 2000. We went to a local church a few times, planning to be married there, but neither one of us connected with the church and we stopped going. We were married at a local historical house instead (by my great-grandmother, who is an ordained minister. I have a pastor in the family and still never attended church regularly!). Then in early 2010, we decided to go to the church our next door neighbors went to. We visited once. Then we went back. We kept going. We liked the church and the people and we both felt that it was time to renew our connection with God, so we joined and were baptized.
As I read the bible that year, I kept thinking about how far our society had come from what God had created. What stuck out most to me was the business of food.
“In the sweat of thy face shalt thou eat bread, till thou return unto the ground; for out of it wast thou taken: for dust thou art, and unto dust shalt thou return.” Genesis 3:19 KJV
But do we today sweat in order to eat our bread? Modern society has made food a convenience. We buy boxes of Hamburger Helper and loaves of already made bread. Our food is ready in five minutes. We don’t need to sweat or work to eat. We don’t even have to know where our food comes from or what it’s made of. Whether or not you believe the bible is truth, you can’t deny that our food industry today is not at all what it used to be.
This stuck out in my mind as so wrong. I was ashamed to realize that I barely even knew what fruits and vegetables grew in which seasons. How had we gotten so far from food the way God had created it? Are we really any better for having Big Food controlling what we eat? I look at the surge in conditions and diseases that have taken over our modern world and I wonder if maybe our food might be at the root of much of it?
What could I do to get my household closer to God’s intentions?
That was the beginning of my real food journey. I’ve learned a lot in the last four years. I grow some of my own food. I taught myself to can food. I’m still learning so much.
Some people are called to become missionaries or pastors. I felt that God was calling me to teach myself and others about real food. My name is Shana. I’m a writer, a wife, a pet-mama. I live in a rural area of North Carolina. This blog is about my real food journey while being on a tight budget. We lost our biggest source of income in January 2013 when I was laid off from my day job, but we’re still doing what we can to stick to real food. We’re not perfect and we don’t try to be. I believe in the 80/20 rule: eat well 80% of the time and don’t stress out over the other 20%. My husband still loves Snickers and Little Debbie (he has a huge sweet tooth). We still sometimes eat fast food (though we’ve cut way, way back). But I do as much as I can to make sure we have good food at home and have the things we need. I love thrift stores and growing vegetables. I love looking out my back window and seeing the chickens scratching in the grass. This is the story of life on our little homestead.