In my mid-twenties I had a health scare that changed the way I think about my body. I have never been a “foodie”, so eating (good or bad) was never a priority for me. I could easily get distracted (working, playing, thinking) and forget to eat for an entire day. Often, when I would remember that I had not eaten, I would eat a lot of food to make up for it. I typically ate my “make up for the day” meals in the evening. A high metabolism kept me relatively lean; therefore, I was not aware that my health was at significant risk. It was not until I began to experience muscle fatigue, unexplained sicknesses, racing heart rates and fainting that I realized I had a problem. Additionally, I had trouble focusing on tasks, was very easily agitated and allowed stress to incapacitate me.
Initially the doctors were unable to determine the cause of my symptoms; however, after many tests and discussions with the doctors it was determined that my lifestyle was at fault. The doctor recommended several different medications to help me control my body chemistry. I am a somewhat stubborn person and could not see myself being a slave to prescription medication in my mid-twenties. I asked the doctor if it would be possible for me to change my fate through diet and exercise. He conceded that it was possible and gave me 6 months to get things under control.
I am not only stubborn, I also have slight OCD tendencies. As a result, I poured myself into researching and applying a healthy diet and exercise. The 6 month trial period was a success. I continued to work hard and was eventually able to get in the best shape of my life. I have kept those eating and exercise habits for more than 10 years.
I believe every event in the life of a sincere Christ follower has a specific purpose. A healthy body results in healthy, clear thinking. That is one thing that I have needed over the last 8 months. I am thankful for the health scare because without it, I would not have been in the physical and mental condition to be successful at what God has called me to do today. The diet and exercise taught me how to conquer my will and do things that are good for me, but do not come naturally to me. Additionally, I learned the value of discipline. I can not imagine attempting to live the last 8 months in the body and mindset that I had in my mid twenties.
When I initially had the scare, the prayer was for God to simply heal me and let me go back to my lifestyle. Mercifully, he did not do that. Instead, he allowed me to learn the impact of what I put into my body and the resulting damage (physically, mentally and Spiritually) that can occur. Also, he knew that I would be leading my family on a very challenging spiritual adventure and would need to be physically and mentally healthy enough to deny the desires of my flesh when things got rough.
I share this with my family and friends to help you avoid the need to experience the health scare. The Bible clearly instructs believers that our bodies are a temple for the Holy Spirit and that we should be careful of the things that we allow in it.
God has a plan and a purpose for everyone and, according to what I have experienced and what I read in the Bible, his purpose will require you to be in top physical, mental and spiritual health to be successful. You will need the ability to focus on tasks, not be easily agitated and not be overcome by stress.
Be sure that your “temple” is ready for your adventure.