Cold and flu season. UGH. Thankfully, this is not as bad as last year, so far.
Being healthy, the road to health, can be hard.
Have you ever considered that you can’t catch health? It doesn’t accidentally get into your system? Even if you are genetically predisposed to good immune system and a good weight, through and through health takes proactivity. Exercise, healthy diet, intentional rest, clean hands.
Of course, none of us go out of our way to get sick. Many of us are very proactive in avoiding the germies with sanitizer, disinfectant wipes and Lysol spray.
In the Old Testament, the prophet Haggai gave this brilliant insight. You can’t catch holy.
“Thus says the Lord of hosts: Ask the priests about the law: ‘If someone carries holy meat in the fold of his garment and touches with his fold bread or stew or wine or oil or any kind of food, does it become holy?'” The priests answered and said, “No.” Then Haggai said, “If someone who is unclean by contact with a dead body touches any of these, does it become unclean?” The priests answered and said, “It does become unclean.” Then Haggai answered and said, “So is it with this people, and with this nation before me, declares the Lord , and so with every work of their hands. And what they offer there is unclean.
Haggai 2:11-14 ESV
The Israelites had allowed sin to permeate in. Maybe they didn’t go looking for it, but its influence bled through, slowly, quietly, unnoticed.
To be ceremonially clean, the priests needed to be proactive and purposeful in their cleansing rituals. Then they had to be cognizant and aware to avoid things that would make them unclean again. This didn’t happen by accident, but by intention and awareness.
It’s the same with you. The same with me. We can’t accidentally catch holy.
God gave us three kids, at this time with THESE needs, to teach me many things, one of which is that I have to be careful with my choices. I have to avoid certain things. I have to do certain things, even if it sometimes feels harder.
I know a daily quiet time is necessary for me to get through my day in a manner that pleases God. And if my day was pleasing to God, I can have peace throughout my day, and at the end when I close my eyes.
A good night’s rest must be a high priority. I wish it wasn’t. I’d get a lot more things done if I could just get by on 6 hours of sleep. But I cannot. My brain and my emotions break down without sleep. God is teaching me rest.
And if I don’t rest, I don’t get my quiet time.
I am exercising. For the first time ever, for the past 9 months, I’ve stuck with it, thanks to my husband. For me, I don’t consider exercise as high in importance as quiet time and physical rest. But it’s been rewarding, and there’s no denying exercise has all kinds of benefits.
I need to eat well, most of the time. We keep junk food to a minimum in our pantry, and we watch our calorie intake. And I sometimes, we take the convenience of the drive-thru or the microwavable meal that’s ready in under 5 minutes. It isn’t healthier. It isn’t the best choice for my health. But it’s easy.
Sometimes, we can only do so much at prevention. What do we do when feel that first hint of a sore throat? We up our water intake, start slamming Vitamin C, drink hot tea. We may need to go to the doctor for medicine to expedite healing and recovery. We try to attack the bug as soon as its evident. Squish it before it fully develops into something more serious.
We need to be that proactive in our own lives with sin as well. With the Spirit’s leading, we can root things out. Face problems head on. We can do the right things and avoid the harmful things. Take our daily spiritual vitamins. Cook home meals instead of always choosing convenience.
Sometimes, we have to ask God to teach us what the harmful things are so we know to avoid them. We have to ask Him to show us those first hints of declining spiritual health.
Maybe in your life, that looks like an increase in complaining.
Maybe your motivation to do anything is waning.
Maybe you have to pep-talk yourself out of bed in the morning.
Maybe you feel a growing sense of anger or anxiety or resentment.
For me, its apathy, swinging easily to irritability. I don’t care about the big things, the important things, but I am so easily bothered by the small and insignificant. God has revealed this truth about myself to me, through tears and trials.
If we listen, He will tell us what it is. He wants to. He will guide us into all the truth through the Holy Spirit (John 16:13). He does not desire that we wander around in the dark, He wants to be our light! He wants His truth to soak into our hearts, minds, and souls. The great Physician wants us to heal us, from the inside out. What medicine is He prescribing for me? For you?
Father, teach me to be proactive in my spiritual health. I know I need the daily supplement that is Your Word. I know I need rest, physically and mentally. I know I need to eat nutrient-rich foods and avoid the convenient, processed junk. Show me what I need to avoid. Guide my daily choices, especially when my spiritual and physical defenses are down. Keep me cognizant, alert, intentional. Keep me surrendered to Your will and guide me into Your truth, as Your word promises that you do. Thank you for Your healing touch in my life.