Practice One: Get Healthy

In the blog on 7 Practices for the New Year, I snuck in an 8th one.  Practice 1 was "Exercise Daily" and Practice 8 was "Get Healthy." I am merging them together as Practice 1:

Do you not know that your bodies are temples 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 bodies.  1  Corinthians 6:19-20

We are physical beings. We have a body and we have a soul/spirit. We are made from the dust of the earth and we have the breath (life, ruach, spirit) of God in us.

We are designed to be whole and unified. Thoughts, emotions, sensations all work together. What you feel affects how you think and act. Your thoughts shape your feelings and actions. Actions impact thoughts and feelings. It is just HOW WE ARE DESIGNED BY GOD.

We cannot be as spiritually healthy as God wants us to be if we are not physically healthy!

I had a very rough illness that lasted almost 3 weeks. I tested negative for COVID, the flu, and RSV, but I had terrible congestion and coughing, headaches, and lethargy. It was hard to think. It was hard to be energetic (actually, it was impossible). My body felt like a zombie. I laid around or sat around most of the day.

My physical condition created great limitations for my emotional, mental, relational, and spiritual life.

We tend to see this in moments of serious illness, but the principle is always true.

Your physical health matters and makes possible spiritual, emotional, and mental health.

We must make it a priority to get healthy.

This is NOT the time to be embarrassed or guilty or avoidant about your physical health.

Studies are everywhere and studies are consistent.

Americans are more OUT OF SHAPE and Americans are as UNHEALTHY as we have ever been.

Our numbers are bad.
What numbers?

How much we weigh.
Blood pressure.

Other numbers are bad as well.
Like how little we exercise.
How much or how little we sleep.

You need a positive mindset when it comes to your health.

Here is the good news.

Yes it is hard, but YES you can get healthy again.

It is long, slow, deep, difficult, and particular.

Healthiness is a lifestyle and a journey. And the longer you live that way and the longer you walk that road, the healthier you are and the easier it is to remain healthy.

Did you ever see the commercial (and I forget the product being sold) that showed people doing ONE pushup? Or eating ONE vegetable? The point was: repetition and cumulation.

Every one you do counts, but you must keep doing every ONE. The more often you do and the more you do the more you see results.

You can think of it like this: Health is a WAY OF LIFE. So is unhealthy. And as in so many things, one way leads to good things and the other way leads to bad things.

The 6 Parts of  Health

Health as a lifestyle involves these six things:

1. Diet and nutrition (probably the hardest for most of us).

2. Exercise for strength (keeping your muscles. bones, joints, and tendons fit, but think in terms of stamina and endurance).

3. Exercise for cardiovascular health (keeping your heart and lungs strong).

4. Sleep and rest for recovery.

5. Flexibility (like yoga and stretching).

6.  Staying away from toxic substances that damage your body (nicotine and its substitutes, the many drugs that are NOT medicinal, and excess alcohol).

It is this combination that makes you healthy.

Tomorrow I'll give you some practical suggestions for working on your health.

Pastor Brian Rice
Posted in