“Or do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit within you, whom you have from God? You are not your own, for you were bought with a price. So glorify God in your body.”
– 1 Corinthians 6:19-20
As a result of knowing God, of being in a relationship with God, and being saved by the grace of God through Christ, It is important for Christians to honor God in all we do.
We hear all the time how we should honor God in our marriages, in how we train-up our kids, at work, in how we let our lights shine before men, in how we treat others…
All good stuff, all important, and all biblical.
What I find lacking however, is Christian emphasis on how we can and why we should honor God with our bodies with disciplined eating, exercise, and physical fitness.
That being the case, I started adding eating and fitness advice and tips to the blog back in January so, if eating better and/or getting in better shape has been a goal of yours, I hope you’ve found these posts informative, inspirational, and that they all glorify God.
Anyway, call it a lack of forethought if you want but I’ve got nothing planned for the Fitness Friday post this week so the rest of this is going to be stream of consciousness in the hope that it makes sense to someone.
A while back, six months maybe but I’m not sure, I was drying off after taking a shower at a gym I don’t normally work out at when some guy looked at me and said I must have the perfect diet.
An uncomfortable moment since I always go well out of my way to avoid talking to naked men in the locker room but I acknowledged him as kindly as I could with, “Thank you, I’m not perfect but I do try.”
Although I thought the brief exchange was a little weird and uncomfortable, it made me feel good because someone thought that I was doing all the right things to stay in shape.
Sadly, and this is a little hard to admit, it also made me feel convicted because what I told him was a tad untrue. Not saying I don’t know what the right things to do are or that I don’t try when I honestly do. What I am saying is that my dieting efforts at the time had mostly consisted of putting the old adage, “you can’t outrun a bad diet” to the test.
While for years I woke up at 4:30 six days a week to work out for an hour, drank protein shakes, plenty of water, ate plenty of fruits and vegetables, shunned sodas, ran three miles on my lunch break, rarely drank alcohol, didn’t smoke… Good stuff for sure but I also ate bacon, cheeseburgers, tacos, BBQ, half a container of ice cream several times a month, cookies, donuts, a few boxes of candy a week, and so on.
Truth is, the objective reality of my situation was that I was the picture of health on the outside but a total mess on the inside which not only landed me in the ER; it also got me to totally change my thinking and way of life.
I think much of my attitude regarding food is exactly the same kind of attitude Christians are guilty of too much of the time these days.
In other words, it’s easy for Christians to “look the part” by going to church, saying they love Jesus, reading the Bible daily, praying before they eat, or even by having a Christian blog. It’s far more difficult however, for Christians to come to the realization that the things we do or believe in, even though we know we shouldn’t, are harming us in ways we may not be able to see and we need to change.
While my problem mentioned above was purely physical it isn’t hard to compare the poison I was putting into my body in the form of food to the poison Christians might be putting into their minds in the form of a belief in evolution, an acceptance of homosexuality as normal, a casual attitude towards sex outside of marriage, a belief that the Bible is not the infallible Word of God, the opinion that abortion is an acceptable form of birth control, or the belief that the death and resurrection of Jesus are events that can only be believed by blind faith.
What about showing kindness to others, helping the needy, witnessing, giving, studying The Word, loving our spouses as Christ loved the church, training up our children? Are we lifting some serious weight there or are we doing just enough to look good?
What about porn or movies and TV shows that are lousy with adultery, nudity, profanity, and every other form of debauchery imaginable? Do we think these things are OK in moderation?
Granted, unbiblical thoughts, actions, attitudes, and beliefs won’t land anyone in the ER but, unless those of us who need to make some pretty serious spiritual lifestyle changes, they could very likely ensure our walks with God may not be as healthy as they look.
And that’s what I think about a lot lately. I know Christians are saved by Grace through faith but…