Where Does Your Food Come From?
by Ray Geide
The day after we arrived in Russia, my wife ordered me out on the streets to find milk. The local grocery store had cartons of milk sitting in a floor refrigeration unit, but something was not right. I ran my hand along the inside of the refrigeration unit and it was room temperature. It was not on. The milk in it was also at room temperature. Having not found any other milk, I purchased the room temperature milk, and took it home. When I opened it, it was spoiled.
Near our apartment I found a small kiosk standing on the side of the street with the Russian word for milk in big letters painted across the top, but it was always closed.
In the next few weeks I purchased milk at the grocery store a few more times. Sometimes it was spoiled and sometimes it was not. When it wasn’t, I put it in the refrigerator for breakfast, but by breakfast time, it was always spoiled.
At that time many Russians got their milk by taking a one liter container to an old lady stationed behind a dirty, yellow tank of milk trailered in from the farm. It was not pasteurized and so required boiling before drinking. I wasn’t brave enough to buy any.
Then as I was going to a morning appointment, I saw a lady in the milk kiosk. I stopped and bought a half liter of milk from her. As soon as I got home, I opened it up and checked to see if it was fresh. It was and the next morning it was still fresh. We figured out that the lady worked in the milk kiosk only in the morning as long as she had milk, so we started getting up early in the morning to purchase milk.
But there was still a problem: it was Russian milk. One big problem with Russian milk, at least for this American’s tastebuds, is the strong aftertaste, a taste reminisent of barnyard air. We choked down the milk hoping to get used to the aftertaste, but it never happened. We finally stopped drinking milk altogether.
Four months later, we heard of a new place to buy milk. It was a Finnish store located on the other side of town. Other Americans had told us the general area where it was located, so we took the subway to the nearest station and set out on foot. After combing the area for an hour in the cold wintry weather, I spotted the Saint Petersburg Hotel which was supposed to be next to it. I ran back to a park where my family waited and told them the good news. We trekked a mile to the Finnish store. Instead of finding the big grocery store we expected, we found a small convenience store with little more than milk, magazines, and meat. We purchased four half liters of milk. The next morning they were still fresh. In fact, after a week they still had not spoiled and they did not have the Russian aftertaste. What a miracle!
My wife started making the hour and a half trip each way to the Finnish store every week just to get milk. We learned that it matters where we get our milk from.
Spiritual food is the same way. There are many books, religions, and holy men, that claim to feed you spiritually, but only one came from the spiritual realm and only one knows the truth about spirituality. Anything else is just spoiled milk. That person said, “I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father, but by me.” Yes, the only source of real spiritual food is Jesus Christ and the only authoritative book of His words is the Bible.
The sad thing is that as I look in churches today, I see that they are studying everything BUT the Bible. Many of them claim to believe in the Bible, but the Bible is rarely opened within their walls. Outside of the church, people are too busy to even think about spiritual things. Is it any wonder that there are so many problems today?
And yet feeding of good spiritual food is as easy as taking that old black book down from the shelf and spending a few minutes reading it each day or regularly attending a church that teaches and preaches the Bible.
Why not turn to the Bible for a good spiritual meal? You might be surprised the growth in peace and happiness that it leads to.