“A Spiritual Check-Up”
My family has a history of heart disease. It was probably present with several grandparents, but it became all too apparent when my father had a heart attack and blockages that required bypass surgery (twice). When my internist learned of this family history, he began tracking my own markers for cardiovascular disease. I thought I was a bit young to start all the tests but he explained we needed a baseline of my healthy heart so that any changes in the years to come could be measured against that baseline. So every year they do the required blood workups and let me know the status of my cardiovascular health.
A number of years ago he reported that my cholesterol was borderline high and we needed to watch it. We did for several years. Then he told me he thought it was time to go on a drug to help lower the cholesterol. That was not what I wanted to hear and I resisted his advice for over a year. I simply refused to have the prescription filled. The next year the cholesterol numbers were no better and I gave in and got the prescription filled. I’m happy to report the numbers are down and now in the low range. They are acceptable now because each morning I take the medicine as prescribed.
I began to think about this daily routine as I looked at the calendar and the approaching season of Lent. Of course, we know Lent is that penitential season where we prepare ourselves for the celebration of Easter. We spend more time in self-reflection of our own sinfulness as well as that of the world. We seek to be more intentional about our devotional and worship life. Hopefully, we dedicate additional time and energy each day to our faithful following of Christ. We might say that the Lenten season provides us an opportunity to work on our spiritual health. Spiritual health? Yes, just as we want to be physically and mentally healthy, we also want to be spiritually healthy. Spiritual health is that part of our life that is connected with God through our Lord Jesus Christ. Spiritual health is maintained by prayer, worship, Bible study, and faith-filled conversation with others. And being spiritually healthy doesn’t just happen. We must nurture it. We must monitor it. We must work at it. We need to realize when we are spiritually depleted and know how to refill our spiritual selves. This is all done by returning to the God who created us and who has redeemed us. Much like the pill I take daily to control my cholesterol, daily we must be in contact and connection with God if we want to be spiritually healthy.
Perhaps you haven’t given much thought to your spiritual health lately. But just like our physical and mental health, our spiritual health needs to be cared for and we must be intentional in the ways we do it. If we ignore or delay taking care of this aspect of our health, we are neglecting a significant aspect of our well-being and it will catch up with us. Give thought today to your spiritual health and well-being.
The season of Lent provides us a wonderful opportunity to contemplate on what God has done for us in the gift of His son, our Savior. Lent also provides us the time and opportunity to take care of our spiritual health. Make this year’s Lenten discipline of worship and prayer a part of your weekly life. Join us for worship and prayer and faith-filled conversation. Let’s all pay attention to our spiritual health and use the Lenten season to help us focus our lives on the One who gives us life.
Yours in Christ,
Pastor Butler +
“Spend your time and energy in training yourself for spiritual fitness. Physical exercise has some value, but spiritual exercise is much more important for it promises a reward in both this life and the next. This is true and everyone should accept it.” ~ 1 Timothy 4:7-9 (NLT)