As I began re-reading the bible again this year, I was drawn to God’s heart for His children, His overall concern for our well being, especially for our whole health, Spirit, Soul and Body. I say health because that word itself denotes “the state of being free from illness or injury.”
Dear friend, I pray that you may enjoy good health and that all may go well with you, even as your soul is getting along well (prospering).
Prevention is better than cure
Chronic diseases are on the increase. In North America, women are surpassing men in CVD (cardiovascular disease). Diabetes, Hypertension (high blood pressure), and cancer are more prevalent than ever. Doctors can prescribe an array of pharmaceuticals that can either numb pain or offset symptoms but, turnaround or cures are dependent on Father’s healing, diet and new lifestyle adaptations.
Heredity was once considered the benchmark for long life and health; if your parents or near ancestors enjoyed longevity, it was an expectation that you would as well. This is also God’s promise to us in His laws concerning food, caring for our bodies and obedience (Leviticus, Exodus, Ephesians 6:1-3). Why then are medical professionals now examining lifestyle as a measurement for longevity, suggesting that it may now surpass heredity? Are we perhaps missing the mark on Father’s guidelines?
I’m always astounded by the number of people that come forward for healing prayer, many of whom are plagued by serious chronic illnesses, which can sometimes also be attributed to demonic activity. The positive to this is that we have seized the truth that God wants us healed and He is willing to do so.
God has provided meat and seed bearing plants for nutrition as well as herbs and oils for healing. Hippocrates, the “father” of medicine from whence comes the Hippocratic oath, taken by physicians, said “Let food be thy medicine and medicine be thy food.”
Several times Jesus used the word “whole” in reference to healing. In Luke 17:19 Jesus told the leper that he was made whole. God’s desire for us is wholeness, Spirit, Soul and Body.
Today, Holistic therapy is becoming a more common alternative for allopathic medicine. We, as Christians have approached this with fear of falling into occultic practices. Holistic simply means we acknowledge our triune composition of Spirit, Soul and Body and that we feed each part it’s specific food to stay in homeostasis (balance). Increasingly, medical doctors are working in synchrony with complimentary, alternative practitioners to treat patients “wholistically.” We still need to exercise caution with those that practice under contrary spiritual rituals, using the term “Holistic”. When looking for a Certified Naturopath or Holistic professional, referrals are a sensible route to take. I’m blessed to have a Holy Spirit filled, praying Naturopath who seeks God’s counsel in her treatments.
Protecting the Temple
Don’t you realize that your body is the temple of the Holy Spirit, who lives in you and was given to you by God? You do not belong to yourself, 20 for God bought you with a high price. So you must honor God with your body. Caring for our bodies does not suggest that we are proud, or vain. By the same token, we don’t want to deny the body its relevant care through food and exercise, while adequately feeding the spirit and the soul. The focus is not about the world’s standards of body-image, it is about being committed to honouring this temple that houses us and the Holy Spirit, with optimum health.
Fasting is rapidly being touted as a solution for several health issues. “Fasting not only helps to clear the body of inflammation, toxins and balances blood sugar; it reduces oxidative stress”, (the kind that lives in our cells). (Dr. Mercola) (People with existing chronic issues must consult their physicians on fasting).
“One study has indicated that people who follow a fasting diet may have better heart health than people who don’t.” (Mayo Ciinic). There are several types of fasting like juice, liquids only, vegetarian (Daniel), intermittent, (not eating for 1214 hours between meals) or one complete day a week of no food.
So, when we are fasting unto God in obedience or to intentionally seek His face, we are also reaping physical benefits that we may not have been aware of.
We are all different; we receive personal revelations at different times in different increments. Every healing journey, be it spirit, soul or body transcends differently for each person, and it is one step at a time, little by little. There is no expectation or pressure to emulate anyone’s lifestyle, all we need is a desire to grasp what is already ours through God and personalize it.
God created food to be enjoyed, not just for nutrition, (the book of Ecclesiastes); I too, keep that in mind and will occasionally indulge. I do have a natural affinity to whole and healthy foods because of how I was raised.
My mother was a relentless gardener who took pleasure in harvesting her bountiful crops and preparing them with great satisfaction. Beef was not a part of our diet; poultry was a weekly treat with fish or legumes being the protein choice in a predominantly vegetarian diet.
Then God blessed the seventh day and made it holy, because on it he rested from all the work of creating that he had done.
At one season in my life, I asked the Father why I was being discomforted in my body by some negative symptoms, while reminding him that I took care of my spirit, my soul and my body. He proceeded to show me that I was diligent in these areas except for the principle of “rest”.
Needless to say, I became intentional about Sabbath rest, not just saving rest time for vacation but tenaciously protecting my rest times. My husband and I are working towards cultivating a vacation lifestyle so that we don’t just have to wait for vacation time to “rest.” Obedience to Sabbath rest also provides us with intrinsic benefits.
My dream and desire is to see us all embrace every part of our being, nurturing each portion so that we can enjoy all the promises of God.
Let’s prosper in every part of our make up, let’s do it for God, for our families and for the fulfillment of our destinies in Him!
Lillian Brown, Associate Pastor, Catch the Fire Canada and Partners in Harvest Holistic Nutritionist