Yesterday we talked about our physical health and three things necessary to be physically fit, things we need in our toolbox to be successful – an accountability partner, a determined heart and mind, and an ability to persevere. Today I want to build from these aspects of physical health & their relationship to our spiritual health.
First and foremost, “What do I mean by ‘spiritual health’?” If our physical health is about the health and wellbeing of our body then our spiritual health logically focuses on our heart and soul. The inner part of us that strengthens and fuels our motivation and ability to model Christ-like behaviors, thoughts, and living.
“Do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit, who is in you, whom you have received from God? You are not your own; you were bought at a price. Therefore honor God with your body.” 1 Corinthians 6:19-20
Have you ever stopped to think about this fact? Not only did God create the world and all in it, He created you and me! Psalm 139 tells us how God not only formed us in our mother’s wombs but did so that we are each unique. This is a miracle in itself.
My sister and I were similar yet very different. My husband has seven siblings – each very different. I find this to be so cool, don’t you?
So don’t question why you are the way you are, instead thank God that there is no one else like you and you have a purpose and mission in this life, unique to you and your situations. This is exciting stuff! Then to make things even better, when we acknowledge God and invite Him to be a part of our life, the Holy Spirit replaces our Jiminy Cricket of the world. We now have the Spirit of God living within us.
If God dwells in our heart, then shouldn’t we desire and strive to maintain our spiritual health? Of course we should. This is not always easy yet it’s possible. Here are three steps to help us be successful in keeping our hearts clean, pure, and most important…healthy.
“…train yourself to be godly. For physical training is of some value, but godliness has value for all things, holding promise for both the present life and the life to come.”
1 Timothy 4:7b – 8
1st: STAY CONNECTED to your Accountability Partner
This isn’t necessarily the same person you count on for your physical health, but then again, sometimes it is. This person is the one you go to when your faith is struggling, for spiritual guidance. It’s also the same one God uses to call you out on the hard things in life you might not want to deal with, like the sin and poor choices you might be making.
God is the Ultimate Accountability Partner but since we don’t always listen, He uses other people in our life to deliver His rebuke, encouragement, message or whatever it is we need to keep moving forward. In order to make good choices and recognize where God is leading you, you need to be listening for His voice. The only way you can do this is to carve out time in your schedule to stop, listen, and learn. Turn the television, phone, and computer off in order to keep your connection with God the strongest one in your life.
Do you know what the fancy word for staying connected is...PRAYER…and all prayer is…is talking and listening to God.
2nd: READ DAILY to fuel your ability to persevere
So now you have set time aside at least once a day, if not throughout the day to talk with God and listen for His direction.
Your connection is there, but is the lines clear? How do you decipher if the thoughts you have are your own, God’s, or of the enemy? What Book do you think you need to read to help you with this?
If you answered, “The BIBLE!” then you are closer than you might have thought to a healthy spiritual life. The Bible is God’s Word – His words for us. When we read the Bible daily, we are able to discern Truth from the lies we “hear” in our thought processes.
You can start in Genesis and read through Revelation each year, read the book or verses you need to help you through the day after looking up a topic in the concordance, or simply open the Bible and start reading. We don’t want to be reading the Bible “to get something out of it” yet at the same time, I know when I started to read mine – this was the only way I knew how or that kept my attention. This summer I found a Chronological Bible at a lawn sale for $.50 and this is helping me to read through the Bible versus reading with the purpose to get something out of it. One thing I do know is this, when thoughts cross my mind and I’m unsure if it something God is asking of me or if it’s something of the opposite – I will go to my concordance and look up whatever it is in a few spots to make sure I’m not reading more into a thought. Often, it is my own pride or goals. Be sure to keep yourself in check and when in doubt, compare it to the One Book, and God, that doesn’t lie.
3rd: Worship & Fellowship strengthen your ability to persevere “Dear friend, I pray that you may enjoy good health and that all may go well with you, even as your soul is getting along well.” 3 John 2
A third way you can ensure a healthy and happy heart is to never give up on meeting together. We all face times when we don’t want to gather with others, especially joyful Christians worshipping the Lord BUT these are the times we need to be there the most. My goodness, this morning I awoke early with anticipation for church but as I started puttering around the house and sipping my coffee I thought, “It would be nice to call it a jammy day.”
I told my husband and as soon as I said the words aloud I knew deep in my heart that I HAD to get to church. I’ve come to learn the times when I really want to stay home are the days I need to be there the most. Today was no different, Mike Shea preached from the pulpit this morning and as I listened thought, “Thank you God”, because Mike was touching on some of the same things I’m working through for this series. I love it when that happens. If I stayed home, I would of wasted time for the words, verses, or ideas to pull it all together.
God is faithful and He deserves our time, praise, and thanksgiving. There is ALWAYS SOMETHING TO BE THANKFUL for! Some days, weeks, months, and even years might be more difficult to see the Light yet when we incorporate prayer, reading our Bible and gathering with others who believe in God and the Truth of the Bible – health is the only possibility.
I encourage you on the days when you think “I can’t do this anymore”, instead of sharing this frustration with your friend or diary – pick up your Bible and read as you fall on your knees to communicate with the One who will NEVER LET YOU DOWN or leave you.
You are never alone and the greatest of health issues you will face in life is not disease but one of hopeless heart. Don’t lose hope – Hope is eternal! If you don’t believe me, read, Where’s Heidi? One Sister’s Journey. I gave up on God; He didn’t give up on me. It is never too late. Never isn’t a word in God’s dictionary. Click on any photo for a link to Amazon to purchase your copy.
Above all else, guard your heart,
Lisa M Buske
P.O. Box 323