Jesus replied: “‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.” (Matt 22:37 NIV)
Why didn’t Jesus just say to love Him with everything? I am seeing this scripture in a new light these days. Body, soul and mind- the three sides of us.
There is a definite connection between our physical body and our mental health. Our physical health is affected by how we think and feel, and by our spiritual wellness. Research has shown the effects of chronic stress on the body. Anxiety affects the brain endorphins. Depression brings extreme fatigue. Its not a new concept, but one that needs to be revived as we continue to move through this unprecedented year of change.
In recovery, we talk a lot about self-care. I know I have said many times how important it is to take care of yourself. You will not be able to help those in need if you are not well. I want to expand this a bit tonight.
I have been seeing many social media posts this week from those who are struggling. When circumstances in life create unbalance, we need to find a way to bring balance within. Teachers are fighting to meet expectations. Parents are facing the unknown with their child’s addiction. We are all wondering what the upcoming election will bring. Constant unbalance on the outside. How do we take care of body, mind and soul to create that much needed balance?
1. Take care of your health. Take physical wellness seriously.
This will look different for all of us. I have been allowing stress and change to affect my physical health. Do you eat a healthy diet, with something green rather than processed man made foods? Do you need to adjust and add nutritional supplements? Have you listened to your doctors? Do you exercise enough?
2. Give yourself grace. You do not have to do everything. Take care of your mind.
Our thoughts do not have to control us. Did you know you can actually choose to accept a thought? Dr. Caroline Leaf has powerful research that applies science to our thought patterns. Let yourself breathe mentally! Take a break, listen to your favorite songs, give your mind some down- time. Are you working longer hours just because you are working at home? Your mind needs to refuel. Are you in recovery and on constant guard to watch for triggers? Find something that you enjoy doing and take a wellness break.
3. When we feel weak, overwhelmed and off balance, our spiritual life should kick into high gear. But, sometimes…
Even though we know we are not alone, we feel lost. Even when we know God has our back, we worry. I know God can take care of this, but I don’t pray… why?
Our physical body and our mind are connected to our soul. We need to allow God to restore us to health- on all three sides. This is why He said to love Him with heart and soul and mind. He knew we needed Him completely to live a healthy, balanced life. My relationship with Him is physical, mental, emotional and spiritual. What about you?
Will you join me in asking God to restore us completely to health? He is the one who brings that beautiful inner balance to our lives. You CAN be ok, even when the world isn’t. He is peace, love and joy. He is our safety net. God goes before us, behind us and through us. He CAN give you the strength to make the right choices for your loved ones. He will let you know when to stop and when to go. Peace. Balance. Wellness.
This is what I am after- I will love You Lord- body, mind and soul. Restore me to wellness- body, mind and soul!