Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Pie Heaven

Talking with a coworker in the middle of the holiday season, after Thanksgiving but before Christmas, the obvious topic of food came up. We have a saying in our family that "it's all about the food" when we get together. Her family has a similar deal, where they talk about how if there's no food in heaven, they don't want to go.

A favorite Jack Handy quote of mine comes to mind.

When you die, if you get a choice between regular heaven or pie heaven, choose pie heaven. It might be a trick, but if it’s not, mmmmmmm, boy!

Pie Heaven sounds pretty awesome to me, although I did just find out over Thanksgiving that I have an in-law who doesn't like pie. Who knew?

As I was thinking about there being food in heaven, I thought of what we will be doing in heaven. The big goal is to become God, a creator of worlds. The funny picture came to mind of this powerful being sending his children down to build a world for which they had just finished the plans. As soon as everyone is gone, he turns around and makes this huge 5 pound burrito or 30 inch pizza appear. Is that why he creates worlds without number? He keeps sending everybody off to create new worlds so they'll leave him alone long enough that he can gorge himself, yet with a perfect body that doesn't suffer any ill effects.

It sounds pretty ridiculous, because it is. It's great that we can find enjoyment through food, but part of the test of this life is to overcome those physical desires. A perfect godly body wouldn't feel cravings for pies and burritos. Chances are a perfect body would feel better all the time than the short-lived satisfaction you get from eating something sinfully delicious. If you can't get to a point where you're over food, you've probably got bigger problems.

Coming back to our two families' thoughts on food in the first paragraph, they are obviously both a little exaggerated. We know there is much more to life than great food. Just as it's difficult for us to understand life where time does not apply, since that is an artificial constraint placed on us in this world, it's difficult to picture not having to eat.

Unlike other sins, where complete abstinence is the command, you can't just stop eating. It almost makes it more difficult. It's certainly not a sin to eat a piece of pie, but where do you draw the line (or the wide gray swath)?

Tie together our dependence on time and the need to eat, and things get even more difficult. Our busy lives make it harder to plan and prepare good-for-you food, so we eat whatever fast food garbage is available to us.

I don't have any answers here, as I'm caught in the same trap. That said, I am looking forward to going to a heaven where I don't have to eat. Except when I want to.