“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]
I think it is safe to say that health-related new year's resolutions are the most popular resolutions that people make. Whether it be losing weight, working out more, healthier eating, or anything in between, people use the new year as a way to make change. I am extremely passionate about health and fitness, and I will explain that more in this blog, but I am more passionate about approaching health and fitness in a correct, Biblical perspective. So as we are still at the beginning of 2019, reflect on 2018 when it comes to your health and fitness. What was good? What would you like to improve on? Let’s go from there!
First of I want you to know that you are beautiful and absolutely amazing the exact way you are. However, I do know that God has given us our bodies, and it is important that we honor Him with the bodies He’s given us by eating foods that will give us the good energy we need and by staying in physical shape where we are able to go out to wherever God might be calling us. Now talking about health and fitness can sometimes be dangerous because many people can fall into the trap of obsessing over it where they never eat bad food or start staring at the scale, but that is in NO WAY what I am saying to do here. I am wanting us to use the bodies we have been given by God to honor Him, and part of that comes with the way we eat and our physical fitness. So instead of taking this New Years and making a resolution based on weight, let’s look at it from a Biblical perspective.
I want to share with you a few examples from the Bible where people fulfilled God’s calling for them and needed physical fitness in order to do it. For starters, when David was a shepherd, he had to fight off lions to protect his sheep (1 Samuel 17:34-35); he then became one of the greatest warriors of the new testament. Moses also climbed all the way up a mountain, did not eat or drink for forty days, and then climbed back down carrying two huge stone tablets (Exodus 34:29). Ruth walked with her mother-in-law for fifty miles while carrying a heavy burden of the loss of a loved one (Ruth 1:17). When the Samaritan woman at the well drew water for Jesus, it required a lot of fitness to carry the jug back and forth everyday, but through that she was able to meet Jesus (John 4:7). Last but not least, Paul was said to have walked over 10,000 miles; fit is an understatement to describe him (1 Corinthians 9:24)!
There are so many other examples in the bible where people could not have accomplished God’s calling without using fitness or some type of exercise. I am not saying this to make you feel bad in any way, but hopefully as a wake up call at the importance for christians to maintain fitness. These characters in the bible didn’t just wake up one day suddenly able to walk far and fight off lions. It required hard work, training, and discipline! So I say this to encourage us: let’s take some time off Netflix this year and begin training our bodies so that we will be ready for whatever it is that God might be calling us to do.
I don’t know about you guys, but I love food. So I am right there with y’all in understanding the struggle in healthy eating. In 1 Corinthians 6, we are told that we are to honor God with our bodies because they are a temple of the Holy Spirit. It is important that we use this verse to consider the foods we put in our body and ask ourselves the question, “Is this food good for me and will it honor the Lord?” A further look into that is to think about the foods and figure out if it will give us the proper energy you need or if it is going to just make us tired, lazy, and weak. Now once again I love food and am all about treating myself with sweets and delicious food that isn’t always healthy. But going into 2019, let’s try to maintain a diet that consists of healthy foods that will leave us feeling energetic and satisfied, with the occasional treats instead of it being the other way around:)
As we are still on the topic of eating healthy, I want to mention one topic that we do not talk about too often and that is gluttony. Proverbs 23:20-21 warns us, “Do not join those who drink too much wine or gorge themselves on meat, for drunkards and gluttons become poor, and drowsiness clothes them in rags.” A good definition of gluttony is found at vocabulary.com where it says that gluttony is characterized by “a limitless appetite for food and drink and overindulgence to the point where one is no longer eating to live but instead living to eat.” This is a sin that is not discussed as much as others are. I know it is extremely easy to get caught in over eating to drown out emotions or just simply because it tastes good! However, let’s use the fruit of self control to be able to know when we have had enough and say “no” to over indulgence. God has blessed us with delicious and nutritious food on this earth. We should honor God’s creation by enjoying these foods and eating them in appropriate quantities. God calls us to use self control to control our appetites, rather than allowing them to control us.
Let’s do this!!!
We live in a world that encourages health and fitness in a wrong way that is easy to get caught up in. We are constantly bombarded through social media, magazines, movies, and others of people living a lifestyle that encourage perfection by being the skinniest, strongest, prettiest version of themselves, but unfortunately they don’t always use the healthiest practices to get to where they are. In 2019, let’s stop comparison. Let’s become the best version of who God wants us to be. Let’s be confident and happy in who we are today. I truly believe that God wants us to live a life of health and fitness that honors him. Going into this year, know that you are already amazing the exact way you are but try to think of how you can incorporate health and fitness more into this year to honor God with your body!
Examples of health and fitness related goals
Begin to exercise certain amount of days a week (make this fun by finding friends that will keep you accountable and join you at the gym)
Eat healthy foods! (try to stay away from crazy diets that restrict you from eating foods, just try to be more conscious about what you are putting in your body and if it will provide adequate energy or make you feel gross)
Avoid over eating!
Find a type of exercise you enjoy! (lifting weights, running, cycling, boxing, swimming, taking fun classes, etc. Find what works for you and something that you actually like.)
GET MORE SLEEP! (try to get about 6-8 hours of sleep each night so that you will have enough energy each day)
Lord, going into 2019 help me to honor You with my health and fitness. Show me areas I could work on, and help me to know that I am amazing the way I am, but the importance of living a life of Godly health and fitness. Amen.