Healthy living (conclusion)

July 23, 2015

In the conclusion of this series on healthy living, the attention will shift this week to one’s spiritual health.

Soul care

Fitness gyms are crammed with people who do not want to pay the cost of ig- noring their bodies, but too often believers suffer from the opposite malady: an ap- parent unconcern with mat- ters pertaining to spiritual health. The soul of every be- liever should be yearning and longing “for the living God” (Psalm 42:2a, NIV). The Psalmist compared his thirst for God to a deer’s thirst for water. He says: “As the deer pants for streams of water, so my soul pants for you, my God. My soul thirsts for God, for the living God…” The Psalmist pictured him- self like a deer on the run in desperate search of nourish- ment. As water is to a deer, so God’s presence should be for His people. C.H. Spur- geon in a sermon titled “The Panting Deer” wrote: David compares himself to a stag when tormented with thirst. The comparison brings out, in the first place, as the characteristic of this desire, directness.

The deer pants—what for? You need not repeat the question or pause for a reply. Every- body can see, by its smoking flanks, uplifted head, its pal- pitating heart, its rolling eyes, its thrust-out tongue—that it is panting for the water brooks. So with David—he is ill at ease, but it is no ques- tion with him what he needs to give him rest of heart— “So pants my soul after You, O God,” he says, and so he goes at once to the point. He knew where he was—there is no beating about the bush, no tacking to and fro—he directs his arrow straight at the center of the target. “My soul thirsts for God—for the living God.” Beloved, it is a great mercy when you and I know what we need, for ungodly men do not know.

soul-care_bigThey thirst, but like petulant children, they know not what they are crying for. They long, and they pant, and their question is, “Who will show us any good?” But you and I know that our great need is the light of God’s Coun- tenance!

When believers are thirsty and their souls are in need of nourishment, believers can go to God who is the only One that can satisfy our soul’s deepest thirst. (Isaiah 55:1, John 7:38, Matthew 5:6). Even when the enemy [Satan] pursues as a predator, believers can immerse them- selves in God’s presence and find protection. When there is no hunger for the presence of God, it is an indicator that something is wrong spiritu- ally. The following spiritual habits are provided to assist the believer in experiencing a deeper level of knowing God, thus contributing to one’s overall quest for living a healthier lifestyle:

• Quiet time – Carve out time in your daily schedule for regular time with God.

• Prayer – Withdraw to commune with God in prayer.

• Journaling – Record your spiritual journey and the daily examples of His providence. Beloved, the bottom line is hewing to the recommen- dations for living a healthy lifestyle is a matter of choice and you can choose to- day to begin eating and liv- ing healthier. One cannot change the past, but one can certainly make better choic- es for themselves and their family for the future. Living a healthier lifestyle and pro- viding daily maintenance for the “temple” is a daily chal- lenge, but remember life is lived just once. Believers are encouraged to live it to the glory of God! (1 Corinthians 10:31).