Remember Your Body
Dear Hopester Family, We hope David's daily messages are helping you combat anxiety during COVID-19. We encourage you to forward these messages to someone you know who is in need of a moment of hope, as we are uniquely positioned to reach spiritual seekers during this time. ---------------------------------- After four years in seminary, I was interviewed by a group of church leaders to confirm my ordination into gospel ministry. Toward the end of the interview, one of the leaders said to me, “How would you respond if someone called you a gnostic?” I knew from my church history classes what Gnosticism was: an early church heresy that suggested Jesus was just a spirit, not human. It was a mystery cult that believed the physical body was unimportant, even polluted, because of sin. Therefore the gnostic faith emphasized the spiritual, not the physical. After explaining my understanding of Gnosticism, my ordination was approved. Now, more than forty years later, I wonder if many contemporary Christians aren’t influenced by Gnosticism when it comes to confronting and defeating anxiety. I wonder if we are so heavenly minded that we are of no earthly good. I wonder if we are so set on spiritual answers that we forget we have a physical body that influences our emotions. The Bible teaches that every human has a body, soul, and spirit (1 Thessalonians 5:23). Each division of the human personality is inextricably connected to the other. What happens in one area affects the other. For example, our thought life affects our emotions. If we constantly think dark, foreboding, fear-filled thoughts, our emotions will follow with anxiety. That’s the way God wired us. Our minds and emotions are connected to each other. The same is true of the physical body. If we don’t pay attention to it, and we deprive it of good health, our emotions can go haywire. The body and emotions are also inextricably intertwined. Our human bodies are a temple in which the Holy Spirit dwells, and are the only bodies we will have while on earth. While we will receive a glorious resurrection body when we join our Father in heaven, we live now in the body God has given us, and we need to take good care of it. How well we do so will affect our emotional health. Due to COVID-19, gyms are closed. But God’s creation is open all the time. Even a brisk daily walk gives our bodies an endorphin boost, which moves our minds toward positive thinking. This body is the only one you will have on this side of eternity. Take good care of it! Enjoy God’s creation! Go outside today, and walk your anxieties away.