Last year's posts dealt mostly with issues pertaining to health and the body.The health of our bodies is indeed very important. We need strong bodies to perform our every day tasks, as well as maintain longevity to accomplish our purpose on earth, be there for our children etc. God even has a word to say about the health of our bodies:
Or do you not know that your body is the temple of the Holy Spirit who is in you, whom you have from God, and you are not your own? 20 For you were bought at a price; therefore glorify God in your body 1 Corinthians 6:19-20 (NKJV)
Strong, healthy bodies enable us to serve others and, well, enjoy our lives. Take it from somebody who knows, if you do not feel well, your outlook is much bleaker and you are far less productive. My battle with fibromyalgia began when I was 19 and has become increasingly more challenging as I age and carried/gave birth to two children. Couple that with poor lifestyle choices (in the forms of food and exercise), and my life consisted mostly of just making it through the day. One day Hubs asked me what I considered fun, and I could not give him an answer! I had lived with pain and fatigue for so long that nothing seemed fun to me anymore. It was, after all, a major chore just to brush my hair and the thought of going out and having a full day of activity was exhausting. That kind of life makes is near impossible to fully "glorify God in your body".
However, we must be careful to not be so caught up in "being healthy", that we lose our perspective and neglect the health of that which is even more important. "That" being the health and condition of our souls. Our eternal souls. I left off seven important words in the verse above. It is the end of the verse upon which I want to focus. Here is the verse in its entirety:
Or do you not know that your body is the temple of the Holy Spirit who is in you, whom you have from God, and you are not your own? 20 For you were bought at a price; therefore glorify God in your body and in your spirit, which are God’s.
Our spiritual condition is so much more important than our physical one.
But reject profane and old wives’ fables, and exercise yourself toward godliness. 8 For bodily exercise profits a little, but godliness is profitable for all things, having promise of the life that now is and of that which is to come. 1 Timothy 4:7-8 (NKJV)
The beloved Billy Graham is quoted as saying, "When wealth is lost, nothing is lost; when health is lost, something is lost;
when character is lost, all is lost."
Obviously taking care of our bodies is important, but what value is it at the end of your life? None of us know when we will take our last breath. We may die from "natural causes" or life could end in a tragic accident. One thing is for certain, if God delays the rapture, we all will one day die regardless of how healthy our bodies were. We will someday be faced with that tunnel leading into eternity. It profits us nothing if we chose to treasure our bodies, if we devoted our time to the "whole foods" and "green" causes and neglected to treasure our very souls. It is all about priorities.
“Do not lay up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust destroy and where thieves break in and steal; 20 but lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust destroys and where thieves do not break in and steal. 21 For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also. Matthew 6:19-21
“Therefore do not worry, saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear?’ 32 For after all these things the Gentiles seek. For your heavenly Father knows that you need all these things. 33 But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things shall be added to you. Matthew 6:31-33
And do not fear those who kill the body but cannot kill the soul. But rather fear Him who is able to destroy both soul and body in hell. Matthew 10:28
Now the Spirit expressly says that in latter times some will depart from the faith, giving heed to deceiving spirits and doctrines of demons, 2 speaking lies in hypocrisy, having their own conscience seared with a hot iron, 3 forbidding to marry, and commanding to abstain from foods which God created to be received with thanksgiving by those who believe and know the truth. 4 For every creature of God is good, and nothing is to be refused if it is received with thanksgiving; 5 for it is sanctified by the word of God and prayer. 1 Timothy 4:1-4
Does this mean eating Big Macs three times a day won't hurt us if we first thank God for it? Certainly not. God also instructs us to be "sober minded", dealing in wisdom. Purposefully, and repeatedly, causing ourselves harm while asking God to save us from the consequences is foolish, dangerous and smug.
To sum it all up, we should care for our bodies as good stewards, knowing a strong body will help us serve and glorify God in a broader capacity. However, we should not become so engrossed in matters of healthy living that we make an idol of the temporal, and thus neglecting the eternal.