I think I’m having one of those “Aha!”moments in life. It shouldn’t be surprising to me, but the power and simplicity of it is hitting me pretty hard. In a strange way, I’m excited about the implications.
We just finished a 5 week series on “So Healthy Together” at CLC. We even did a take-off from the old Turtles’ song, “So Happy Together” to kick it off. We looked at being healthier spiritually, physically, intellectually, emotionally and relationally. What brought me the “Aha” moment was the “homework” we assigned each week at the end of the sermon.
A few of the “assignments” are listed below. To give you an idea, read through it and then I’ll share my”Aha“:
1. Read a few verses of the Bible and meditate on what you read, at least 4 times each week.
2. Get together socially with other Christians at least once a month.
3. Practice fasting: a meal(s), go vegetarian, give up certain unhealthy food(s).
4. Sit in intentionally in silence a few times a week (start with 10-15 minutes each time)
1. Exercise at least 3 times a week (start with just a 30 minute walk)
2. Sleep 7-9 hours a night, drink 8-10 glasses a day.
3. We also made a commitment of how much weight we each needed to lose until the weekend before Thanksgiving… And we are going to donate $2 a pound to our partnership ministry in Zambia to help start a pre-school.
1. Read or watch a great Christian thinker like: C.S. Lewis, Francis Schaeffer (both deceased) or contemporaries like Ravi Zacharias or Os Guiness.
2. Learn something weekly, just to learn (try a “Ted talk” at Ted.com ?)
1. For awareness’ sake, write down a list of at least 25 emotions.
2. Read one Psalm a day, out loud, that expresses emotions.
3. T.S.F.A. Stands for “therapeutic smiles for everyone.” A practice of smiling big, intentionally, for 30 seconds…just for smiling’s sake. (Watch the message at clcdayton.com for more explanation).
I was “off” for this weekend, but I’d assign some homework like this:
1. Write a list of 10 people who matter to you, with a sentence of “why.”
2. Send them each a note of thanks or encouragement.
3. Pray for them daily.
4. Reach out to someone who is “under-noticed” or lonely.
OK, so here is my “Aha moment!” Wow, to be healthy is way more inclusive than I ever realized. God made us spiritual, physical, intellectual, emotional, relational beings. To be the best me, I need to pay attention to ALL of me.
I’ve been trying to do the homework assigned above. IT TAKES A CONSCIOUS, CONTINUING EFFORT to do so. Being busy in life is one of the greatest obstacles to this kind of health. It takes TIME to be this healthy.
So many of us are distracted in life, and don’t take the time for the healthy habits above. BUT, the GOOD NEWS is that when we do, the areas work together in a healthy synergy. Good practices in one area, tend to promote them in others.
So, regular exercise also clears my mind, setting me up to learn. Prayer for others makes me more sensitive relationally, and on and on.
Likewise, I also realize that “one dimensional improvements” in me (like losing weight, ot better emotional health) are WAY less likely on their own.
So…go ahead, make a few “baby-step” goals about the growth you would like to see in you. Pray for God’s help and guidance, then get started!