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Running on Empty

So whether you eat or drink, or whatever you do, do it all for the glory of God.
1 Corinthians 10:31 (NASB)

Series Focus: “Cleaning House”

Self-care has been a hot topic for some time now. Rooted in the truth that we can’t care for others well if we fail to care for ourselves, self-care nourishes one’s physical, emotional, and mental health. The approach to caring for oneself looks different for each individual. Most applications will include some equation of rest, nutrition, hydration, exercise, medical appointments, connecting with others, community activities, hobbies, and more.

Some may argue that self-care is selfish or self-serving. But tending to our health is scriptural. God promotes and encourages our healthy choices. In his letter to the Ephesians, Paul wrote:

No one hates his own body but feeds and cares for it, just as Christ cares for the church. And we are members of His body. (Ephesians 5:29-30 NLT)

Paul related physical truths with spiritual truths. Just as we feed and care for ourselves physically, Jesus feeds and cares for us spiritually. We attempt to eat clean, nutritious foods and drink plenty of water to promote and maintain good health. Likewise, Jesus is the Living Water and the Bread of Life for us. We drink from the river of His delights and we feed on His faithfulness. He refreshes, nourishes, and sustains us—His body—because He cares for us.

We are not “just” the body of Christ, but we are also a temple—a dwelling place, a sanctuary, a house—of God. Paul taught this truth in his first letter to the church in Corinth. In 1 Corinthians 3:16 (NASB), he challenged them saying:

Do you not know that you are a temple of God and that the Spirit of God dwells in you?

And in 1 Corinthians 6:19-20 (NASB), Paul inquired and instructed them:

Or do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit within you, whom you have from God, and that you are not your own? For you have been bought for a price: therefore glorify God in your body.

Our physical bodies are carriers of God’s presence. We are extensions of God’s love, compassion, and action on the earth—His hands and feet! We are His instruments and need to be ready for His use. We must care well for our physical bodies so we will be prepared to do what He has purposed for us.

What we put into our bodies has a direct effect on our health, vitality, strength, energy, and longevity.  Glorifying God in our bodies is eating foods that promote health, not destroy it. It’s drinking enough water daily. It’s exercising, resting, and enjoying hobbies. Self-care, when done with a heart set upon God and His purpose in us, is glorifying God in our bodies.

We each are a house, a temple, a sanctuary of God’s Holy Spirit: physical and spiritual. We cannot only focus on the physical and ignore the spiritual. We cannot only focus on the spiritual and ignore the physical. Both need our care and attention.

In Romans 12:1, Paul wrote:

Therefore I urge you, brothers and sisters, by the mercies of God, to present your bodies as a living and holy sacrifice, acceptable to God, which is your spiritual service of worship.

What can you do today to present your physical body as a living and holy sacrifice, acceptable to God? What area of your “house” may need a little cleaning up or fueling up? We can’t keep going while running on empty. Explore methods and practices of self-care that will feed and care for your body, mind, and soul. Let’s put into practice glorifying God in our bodies.

Holding Fast to Hope,

Scripture References: Ephesians 5:29-30; 1 Corinthians 3:16, 6:19-20, 10:31; Romans 12:1; John 6:35, 7:37-39; Psalm 36:7-9


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