Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, the new creation has come… 2Cor 5:17
Sixteen years ago, I had a stroke at the age of 32.
The Doctors told me that I was morbidly obese. I had to change the way I lived or I was setting myself up for another stroke. And there was a good chance, if I didn’t change my lifestyle, I would probably die.
For the first time in my life, I truly wanted to live. So, I made the commitment to change the food I ate and to begin to exercise. I had done every fad diet known to man. I had also tried every kind of new exercise program that hit the market. I always failed miserably at sticking to getting healthier. This time with my life on the line, I was determined to stick to this new healthy regimen.
Over the next couple of months, I ate healthy and began to take a Dancerize class at the local YMCA. I was dedicated to this new healthy lifestyle. I was proud of myself for sticking to my plan of becoming healthier. I thought these were the only changes I needed to make to become a new person. But God had a different plan.
One day, my Dancercize teacher walked into class with a handful of postcards. She passed them out to us. The post cards were for a “Healing Bible Study.” She said that we were all taking care of keeping our physical bodies healthy by dancing. Now it was time to get spiritually healthy as well. I didn’t have a clue what she was talking about, but I didn’t have many friends so I thought it would be a good way to meet people.
I discovered Jesus through that Bible Study.
I realized that sometime in my teenage years, I had a spiritual stroke. I chose to indulge in behaviors that pulled me farther and farther away from the Lord. As I turned away from Him, I turned towards a life full of sin and anguish. I became obsessed with instant gratification. If it felt good (making me forget all the pain) then I wanted it. And I wanted so much of it that I became morbidly obese and obsessed with pleasure. I lived to be high on the fake sense of happiness – avoiding the pain of reality at all costs.
I buried God in the recesses of my mind, ignoring His soft voice and His gentle guiding hand. I avoided any contact with God as much as possible. Out of sight – out of mind. That post card handed out by my Dancercize Teacher was God’s invitation to me to come back to Him.
While my physical body was healing and getting healthy, my spiritual life was an unhealthy mess. That Bible Study taught me that I needed to change the way I was living spiritually if I want to do more than survive this life. If I wanted to thrive (as God intended), I needed to become a new person spiritually. I need to eat healthy spiritual food (God’s Word ) and I needed to exercise my spiritual muscles (through fellowship with other Christians, Bible Studies, listening to Sermons, serving others, etc).
Becoming spiritually healthy and physically healthy is how God brought me back to wholeness. Having one without the other didn’t bring complete healing. God knew I needed both, so He showed me how to partner with Him to become whole again. I just had to do my part and God took care of the rest!
If you are looking for that first step to becoming healthier spiritually, I encourage you to join us at our weekly Tuesday Evening Healing Service. It is a great time for spiritual fellowship and getting fed spiritually through the sermons of gifted Teachers/Preachers.