Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Why Are We So Spiritually Weak?

I know I harp on this a lot but, on what are you basing your relationship with Jesus? How are you obtaining a growing richness with Jesus? How are you keeping the flame of passion for all things Jesus burning deep in your spirit? How are you sure that you are on the right path? I ask these questions because it is so easy to end up consuming spiritual "junk" food and becoming ill or malnourished. This really is an important subject if you want to remain faithfully serving Jesus until the end of your days.

I am a bit of a health nut. Not a freakishly over the top health nut but a guy who believes that looking after our body is a means of honouring God with good stewardship. This body does not belong to me, it was bought by Jesus and is now a temple of the Holy Spirit. I am also about to have my tenth child, I have a young wife and I have a church to look after. I need to be around as long as God will allow me so I have to do my part to maintain good health. God has designed this body in a marvelous way, with a heart to last well over a hundred years. My skin renews every 21 days, I go through 14 skeletons in my life and every cell is renewed on scheduled except for a few in my eyes and a few in my brain. Looking after this wonderful temple is not difficult but it takes some effort.

To look after the temple of the Spirit of God I need to know what foods are beneficial; which of the great variety of things there are to eat are best to help this body in its constant renewal. The body also needs proper rest. The thought is that the body needs sleep to repair itself. The body also needs exercise because it was designed for activity. There are all kinds of things that go wrong with the body when we do not give it proper exercise.

Now what is true physically is also true spiritually. If looking after our physical body is so important, how much more important is it to look after our soul? Our body will only be with us in this world because it was born to this world and of this world. According to God's Word we will be given a new body for eternity. However, our spirit and soul are eternal, so we need to do everything we can to increase the health of our soul and maintain fellowship with Christ through our spirit. There are some basic things we need to do to have a healthy soul.

As our body needs proper food so does our soul. We need a healthy appetite for God's Word. We need good meals that feed our soul and provides the sustenance that gives strength in our relationship with God. Without the Word we only have second hand comments, some of which are sugary and referred to as "junk food". We need to be enjoying the Word throughout our day, learning and growing closer with Jesus.

In the same way our body needs rest, our soul also needs rest. It is thought that sleep provides the body time to repair itself and prayer provides the same for the soul. It is in prayer that the convictions of the Spirit become obvious, it is the time when we examine ourselves, confess our sins and are renewed in our relationship with Jesus. It is in prayer that the Spirit teaches us and reveals things to us. Just as it is true that while we sleep our body grows, while we pray we grow in Jesus. We need daily periods of rest for our soul.

The body needs exercise to maintain excellent health and the same is true for our soul. We cannot simply consume the Word of God and do nothing. In this way we would become obese and lazy on the Word. When the body is obese it is open to all kinds of disease, the same is true spiritually. We have to exercise our faith by living the promises of Jesus. We have to exercise our faith, putting into action what we have taken in through the Word. Without this exercise we may die in our faith. Just as North Americans know they need exercise but don't do it, many of us Christians know we need to live by faith but don't do it.

The facts are there and are so simple when it comes to maintaining good health for our body. We know what we need to do but we don't do it. I hate to keep repeating myself but, it is a matter of deciding to do it. We decide, make a plan and then do it. The truth is the same for us spiritually. The Word of God makes it plain what we must do to be strong in Jesus, to have excellent spiritual health, but we continue in our spiritual weakness because we don't do what we know we need to do. Again, we need only make the decision, create a plan and do it. We need to study the Word daily, spend time in prayer daily and exercise our faith daily in order to grow in our relationship with Jesus Christ. If we don't we will become weak and susceptible to all kinds of "diseases". To borrow the theme from a famous athletic clothing company, "Just Do It!"

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