Honoring God Inside and Out

Taking care of yourself can sometimes be a balancing act!

Do you ever feel like life is a little out of control, like all your efforts to be healthy, reduce stress and honor God with your life are still not enough? I know I have!

Recently, my hubby and I have had some unexpected expenses come up to deplete our savings, on top of that, I’m still looking for a car as mine died in February and then a minor or maybe it’s major annoyance, arose this week when I had trouble getting a prescription refilled. It is now refilled, but in the process of all of these things, I found my blood pressure has been high. Now I try my best to monitor my health. I exercise, try to eat right and I thought I was handling my stress. I’ve prayed about my crazy situations and relied on God for answers. He has answered by giving me ways of bringing in more income. Thank you God! Yet, even with my best efforts at eating right, looking at the positive in my life and fully relying on God, I still am facing this health struggle of high blood pressure. Yes, I know I am getting older and I also know that once I’m back on my prescriptions, that should help too. In all of this, I have to admit that life sometimes seems a little too much. Taking care of me is not easy. (I think my husband would agree with that assessment but that’s a different topic. ‘Thank you honey for putting up with me and encouraging me.)

I guess the real question I find myself asking is, “God how can I honor you with how I eat and the things I do?”

I know that there are some things I can do better. One thing is that I do need to take more time for me. I tend to want to take care of everyone else, but myself. Another thing is that I need to reassess my diet. I find this isn’t a one time only thing. I have made watching my sugar intake and salt intake a priority, but we have been a little busy lately and I have let my monitoring slide a little and yes, since I am getting older, it is time for a consultation with my doctor. Maybe I do need to change my medications a little. Thankfully I take very few medications and overall I am healthy. My blood pressure issue is something that I have been controlling mostly by watching what I eat and I have been praying about it. I believe God has given me wisdom with my health issues, still it’s time to reassess again.

Another area I need to take a look at is my spirit. Have I been feeding my spirit lately or have I let some things slide there as well? When all is said and done, I know first and foremost, I need God. I need to walk daily with my heavenly Father. He knows everything about me and He knows exactly what I need. I have been setting aside time with God, but lately it’s been rushed. I think I need to slow down and focus on the time I spend reading my Bible and praying.

Now I know you don’t want to hear just about me and my health issues, but I wonder, “What about you? How are you doing? Do you need to make some changes in your diet and exercise program? Is it time for a check-up? How are you doing spiritually?” It’s never too late to change your habits and it definitely is never too late to rely on God. When things seem out of control and you really are not sure what to do, ask Him and rely on Him. He wants you to come to Him.

Take care of yourself inside and out. Honor God with your body, soul and spirit and give yourself a check-up. Ask yourself these questions:

How am I doing in honoring God with my body?
How is my spirit doing? Am I honoring God with my thoughts. Am I honoring God by seeking Him and trusting Him?
How’s my soul doing? Am I making time to refresh and rejuvenate myself? Do I have a grateful attitude or have I developed a complaining, woe-is-me attitude? What am I watching, listening to and feeding my soul on? How can I honor God with my personality?

I know I need a check-up because I want to honor God inside and out. How about you?

Father God,
I know that part of honoring you is taking care of myself too. I need to care for the body that you created, the house in which your Spirit dwells; that means taking care of my body, soul and spirit. I think it’s time for a check-up. How am I doing in these areas, Lord? How am I doing physically? I know I need to go into my doctor for a check-up and I need to reevaluate how I am doing in eating and exercise habits too. I know busyness has crept in and I haven’t been as vigilant in these areas lately. I need your help. Guide me in what I eat and what I do. I also know that I need a spiritual check-up. My time with you lately has been hurried and I haven’t focused on listening as much as I should. Yes, I need to get back on track there too. My soul also needs some rejuvenating and perhaps a little rest. It’s so easy to let your mind get caught up in the negative things you hear or see in the world or on social media. I don’t want to live there and I don’t want to get stuck in the negative. I want to focus on the positive. I want to be grateful and content with what I have. I want to look for that which is beautiful and of good report. As I turn my mind and heart to you, help me to focus on that which will honor your name. Lord, more than anything else, I want the next generation to see who you are and know your mighty works. I want them also to honor you, body, soul and spirit. Lord let me be a part of your story so that when I tell my story, it’s about you. I feel like that is what you are laying on my heart, to tell my story, the story of how you have been so faithful to me through the years. Lord, may our kid and grandkids, the future generation, follow you all the days of their lives. May they too, be a part of your story. Amen

“Do you not know that your bodies are temples of the Holy Spirit, who is in you….Therefore, honor God with your bodies.” 1 Corinthians 6:19-20

How are you doing physically?
* Has it been awhile since you’ve seen a doctor? Maybe it’s time to go in and ET a check-up.

* Make at least one change to eat healthier. Maybe that’s limiting your sweets or drinking more water. A good way to do this, is to not buy those sweets at the store or not go in for that sugar laden, calorie rich triple chocolate caramel frappuccino or whatever it is you like. Keep a pitcher of water in the fridge with at least 60 oz. of water in it. See if the pitcher is empty at the end of the day.

How’s your Spirit doing?
* Are you exploring or reading your Bible? You know there are ways of listening to the Bible in your car too. There are aps for that.

* Find some ways to add worship into your day. Ask Alexa to play your favorite worship tunes while you are working out or if you are old style like me, sit down and play those tunes on your piano or guitar. That will feed your spirit and your soul.

* Spend some time in prayer. Learn to quiet your heart and listen as you pray. What is God saying to you? Write it down.

Finally, how is your soul doing?
*Are you finding time to rest?

* Do you make time to do some things you enjoy?

* What are you feeding your soul? There is so much more that could be said here but take an assessment of your “soul diet.” Is the main course of your “soul diet” work? Do you continually bring work home? Is your diet You Tube and social media? Do listen to a constant barrage of political news? (That may be a little hard now to right now, but …) Or perhaps you listen to all the negative new that’s out there. What are your kids listening to and watching? If you feel depressed, worried, hopeless or just plain weary, perhaps you need to adjust your “soul diet”.
Perhaps your “soul diet” could include getting outside more, enjoying God’s world, doing something with your kids, learning a new skill or just relaxing and breathing in the last rays of summer. Other ideas, actually call someone, get together with friends face to face, do a Bible study with someone or join a small group. There are so many options!
These verses are just a few to get you started, but try exploring God’s Word on your own to see what He says about you. Then your esteem and identity will be built on what God says and who He is created you to be. And when we walk in God’s plans and purposes, they are good!

Kid’s Section

SHARE A STORY: Taking Care of Me – 1 Corinthians 6:19-20
GUESS WHAT’S IN MY BAG? This is a fun way of starting a story with your child. Place some items in a bag. Let your kids guess what is in the bag, then and take the items out one at a time.
LET’S TALK: “Can you guess what’s in the bag? It’s something we use in the morning after breakfast. It’s a toothbrush. A toothbrush? What does a toothbrush have to do with our story? What do we use a toothbrush for? Yes, we use a toothbrush to clean out teeth. What else is in here? Some soap and a towel? What do we use soap for? We use soap and towels when we take a bath. Here’s a mirror. Look in the mirror. Who do you see? It’s someone that God made. Who did God make? God made you and me! I have one more thing in here. It’s a very special book. Can you guess what book it is? It’s our Bible, God’s special book.”

STORY: God made us in an amazing and wonderful way. He made us and He knows everything about us. When God made us, He also gave us all that we would need to take care of our bodies and be healthy.
In our Bible, in Corinthians, it says that our bodies are God’s temple or church. This means that when we believe in God and invite Him into our hearts to be our forever friend, His Spirit comes to live in us. When God lives in us, He watches over us, protects us and helps us to do what is right. God wants us to be clean on the inside and the outside. One of the reasons that we take good care of our bodies is because God wants us to treat our bodies like His house. He wants us to honor Him with our body or take care of ourselves because He made us. God wants us to be healthy so we can live for Him. When we take care of our bodies, we will be healthier and happier and when we love God and try to live for Him, we will honor Him with what we do, say and think too. We can live for God on the inside and outside.
What are some ways we can take care of our bodies? What are some ways we honor God with what we say and do each day?

MEMORIZE: Psalm 139:14 NIrV – (Hold hands as though holding a book.)
How you – (Point upwards.)
Made me – (Point to self)
Is amazing – (Hold up closed fists then open hands wide.)
And wonderful – (Jump up and down with hands in the air.)

Dear God,
Thank you for making my body and for making me special. Help me to keep my body clean and healthy. Help me do the things that would honor you. Amen

KNOW: God wants me to take care of my body – inside and out.
TALK ABOUT: What can we do to take care of ourselves.
ASK: Who made you? God made me. What can you do? I can take good care of myself.

* Draw a picture of yourself with your child – stick figures are fine.

* While doing routine tasks such as brushing your teeth or hair, thank God for your body.