It seems like I have always, from since I can remember, tried to watch my weight. Not in an obsessive way, but I have had a general understanding of health from an early age, and I like my clothes to fit me! Although I feel like if I just look at food, I gain a few pounds. Can I hear an “Amen?”
For most of my adult life I have ‘sort of’ been able to keep my weight under control. I like weighing in around 195. For me it is my optimal weight, not by those stupid weight chart standards: they have me much lighter. I tried reaching those chart goals once and I looked like I had just been released from a concentration camp.
I use my own standards. At my optimal weight I can wear size large shirts and 32-34 waist pants. TMI?
A few times over the course of the past 30 to 40 years I have gotten lazy and slack. Once I weighed in at 240. I was huge, and today I look at pictures of that era and think, “Wow, dude!” Once I remember looking at myself and saying out loud, “What happened!” I know what happened, I lost all discipline of what I was consuming.
Life takes discipline. No matter how much effort is needed to do the right thing, discipline is what we need. When it comes to eating, I have found keeping track of every morsel that goes into my mouth results in keeping the weight off.
Everyday, I track exactly what I eat. You may be thinking, that would be a pain or hard to do. Yes, sometimes I like doing it, other times it is hard and inconvenient, and sometimes I miss. But the result is worth it. I feel better, sleep better, can do more things, and my clothes fit.
Should it be any different when it comes to my spirit? Shouldn’t the principle be the same?
I like being a spiritual man. I am not always and certainly have not been all the time over the past decades. The things which come into my mind affect my soul, which in turn influence either my flesh, or my spirit.
Have you ever thought about the soul and the spirit?
The soul lies between our spirit and our body. Tertullian called the soul the vessel of the spirit.
Dr. Andrew Murray wrote, “The soul is the meeting place, the point of union between body and spirit.”
Penn-Lewis said, the soul has the power of choice regarding which world will dominate or control the entire person.
G.H. Pember said in his book Earth’s Earliest Ages, “The body we may term the sense-consciousness; the soul self-concisousness; and the spirit the God-concisousness.”
He also wrote that the body (flesh), “gives us the use of the five senses”, and the soul gives us the “intellect which aids us in the present state of existence, and the emotions which proceed from the sense.” The spirit, however, is the highest part of men and women, which comes “directly from God, and by which alone we apprehend and worship Him.”
What is the point? As with controlling my body; when it comes my spiritual life, I have to keep track of everything entering my mind.
My soul, when fed with junk, wants to turn in the direction of my flesh. Which is what happened in Genesis 6:5,
“Every imagination of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually.”
Christians are never instructed to empty our mind, or our soul. On the contrary, we are to fill it. If we fill it with the wisdom of the world, our soul will turn to our flesh and the flesh will dominate. If we fill it with the things of God, our soul will turn upward and we will be spiritual; We will walk by the spirit and not gratify the desires of the flesh.
We have to work at being spiritual.
One way to daily fill our mind is with the word of Christ. The apostle said in Colossians 3:16, “Let the word of Christ richly dwell in you…”.
The words of the Bible, God’s written Word, are to dwell in believers. That is, by study, meditation, and application of the Word, it becomes a permanent abiding part of one’s life.
Just like tracking food going into our body is helpful for staying healthy, so too tracking every word of God which goes into our soul helpful for spiritual health.
Which brings me to the reason for this long piece; I invite to you join my Bible Reading Plan. We are reading chronologically through the Bible, that is, as the events happened. Each day I provide you with a tracking tool. The tool tells you what to read and guides you through what you have read.
The result, like stepping on a scale, will be at the end of an entire year, you will have read through the Bible. Your soul will have been fed, your flesh will be subservient to your spirit, not the other way around.
At the end of the year, and quite frankly the end of a day or week, or month of reading the Word, you won’t step in front of a mirror and ask, “What happened?” Rather you will be spiritual, healthy and prepared to go and make disciples.
Join me and many others who are feeding on the Word of God. You can join at any time throughout the year. Click below to begin.