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Making the Change: The role of attitude in health reform

 

“I can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me.”  Philippians 4:13.

The ability to make any positive change or growth in Christianity has to be based in a dependence on God to do the seemingly impossible for His glory. A firm belief that God can do all things for His people that ultimately result in His name being glorified has to be present before the positive reform can be embarked upon. Many do not make health reform a subject of earnest and continual prayer in their lives. With such a great emphasis on health and fitness in the secular world, some Christian’s assume that they should attempt eating right or exercise as the world defines it. The Christian that attempts to achieve healthy living using the world’s approach as their personal trainer does a great disservice to God and themselves. A Christians health reform object should be to glorify God. A misguided self-centered “look at me” goal in health and fitness cannot be blessed by God. Any person achieving such gains without understanding the greater purpose of a sound mind and body in God’s kingdom will be bankrupt of the treasures and spiritual influence that can be gained by seeking God’s glory in health endeavors. Health reform in a Christian’s life should first be approached by a good understanding of the scriptures as it relates to God’s instruction. There is no better example than Daniel in this regard. Daniel’s determination to not be defiled with the king’s meats regardless of circumstance or punishment stands as a great example of obedience and devotion to God. Daniel’s adherence to healthy eating and related principles that God had instructed resulted in him being a powerful witness for God. It is this end that the prospective Christian health reformist should aspire. A sound mind and body that has been clearly blessed by God will do wonders in terms of influence for ministry. We live in a world that has been overcome by greed where excess is the norm. Temperance is wholly misunderstood. “What? know ye not that your body is the temple of the Holy Ghost which is in you, which ye have of God, and ye are not your own? For ye are bought with a price: therefore, glorify God in your body, and in your spirit, which are God’s.”  1 Corinthians 6:19-20. We must reacquaint ourselves with our holy purpose, to reflect Christ and be co-laborer’s with Him in winning souls. “But I keep under my body, and bring it into subjection: lest that by any means, when I have preached to others, I myself should be a castaway.”  1 Corinthians 9:27. We all have a responsibility to both learn and apply proper health principles in our life. Satan desires people to have a rebellious and unrestrained spirit. A spirit that defies all forms of temperance and control. Learned and practiced heavenly discipline were Daniel’s allies when his testing time came. “But he knoweth the way that I take: when he hath tried me, I shall come forth as gold. My foot hath held his steps, his way have I kept, and not declined. Neither have I gone back from the commandment of his lips; I have esteemed the words of his mouth more than my necessary food.”  Job 23:10-12.

Attitude plays such an important role in any aspect of life. A willing and submissive learner’s attitude to God’s instruction and basic health principles is a powerful ally on the road to change. The unwillingness to give up unhealthful foods and intemperate practices that an individual has grown accustomed to proves to be the greatest challenge. A desire to satisfy taste buds more than to nourish the body with proper nutrients for health and witness will lead to ruin. So what type of attitude should one begin this journey with? A prayerful one.

Ask yourself, “why do I desire a change in health?” Wrong Answer: “I want to lose weight so I can feel good about myself.” This answer, while common for those without existing health issues, may seem right, but is wrong because it is rooted in self. If you are the sole reason for your desire to change, you leave out God, and have misunderstood the purpose of health reform for the Christian. “Ye ask, and receive not, because ye ask amiss, that ye may consume it upon your lusts.”  James 4:3. Long story short, CHECK YOUR MOTIVATION. Self-centeredness cannot be blessed and used by God.

Right Answer: I want to understand God’s purpose for my life. I want my mind and body to serve as a living witness to all of a submitted and sanctified life.

With your motivation now in check you can embark upon the journey to better health.

A common viewpoint is that health reform is hard. Any change that threatens Satan’s grasp over our lives will be met with great opposition from Satan himself. “For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places.”  Ephesians 6:12

So from the very beginning we have any enemy to our progress. One must also and more importantly remember that we have a champion in Jesus Christ, who has already defeated this enemy through His sacrifice on the cross. We need only take hold of His strength, and trust in His promises, then victory will be ours.

This is why the road to health reform for the committed servant of God has to be traveled with Jesus at the wheel. “I can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me.”  Philippians 4:13. “But Jesus beheld them, and said unto them, With men this is impossible; but with God all things are possible.”  Matthew 19:26. The prospective health reformist must also foster a positive and determined attitude. There will be victories and setback that will have to be overcome. Overcoming through faith and works will lead to making a deposit in the bank of spiritual growth that cannot be realized without a prayerful pursuit of health. When you begin with the end in mind and celebrate victories while praying through setbacks, God will strengthen your mind and resolve for His glory and victory will be yours.

 

 

 

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