When I entered what I thought was Bible School/ministry leadership training in 1973 I had absolutely no idea what I had gotten myself into. Before there were any intense Bible teachings and long before there was any instruction in leadership, the 65 of us in the program were taught the importance of taking care of our physical bodies.
Every morning we met at 5:55 am for our daily run. This morning run was at times grueling but the benefits were outstanding. As much as we all hated doing it, most of us understood why we had to get up so early and trot a couple of miles.
Within the first week we were told that we would all participate in a three week cleansing program that would flush out of our bodies all the junk we had deposited in them during our lives. Most of us just groaned and lamented our decision to be there.
For one week we ate no food whatsoever and drank an obnoxious compound of volcanic ash and other weird stuff many times a day. The goal was to draw out the toxins latent within our colons; thus the term “colon cleanse”. We were warned that every disease, every illegal drug and every junk food meal we ever ingested would mysteriously appear again as it was being cleansed out of our system.
I can think of no worse week of my life than the first week of my first cleanse. I, along with everyone else, was miserable beyond description. Every single one of us knew that we were going to die within hours. Some even drew up a will anticipating such an event. No one needed a will as it turned out.
As the week drug on and on an amazing thing happened; we started feeling better and the craving for food went away. By the time the week ended, we were all somewhat sad for we were all feeling better than we had ever felt in our lives. Week two was very bland steamed vegetables etc and week three was the slow introduction of things like raw hamburger and actual meals.
Because I had so much to lose (weight and toxin wise), I lost nearly 20 pounds during that three week cleanse. Amazingly, I lost another 20 pounds that first year and kept most of it off for almost 20 years. As much as I detested certain elements of that three week cleanse, I know that it was ordained by God for it made all of us extremely sharp mentally and fit physically.
Certain things were engrained in me 40 years ago that I practice even today. Of course I have “fallen off the wagon” many times over the years and paid the price through weight gain and sluggishness of mind and spirit, but by and large I have tried to do what I learned the first month in Bible School/ministry leadership training which was to take care of this body God has given us.
If we are not willing to keep our physical bodies under control, we will never be able to control our thinking. If we cannot manifest discipline in what we eat and how we live, we will never have the discipline needed to diligently study God’s Word and live it.
Many Christians see no need for physical discipline, proper eating or trying to stay in shape. They look at the physical realm as being inferior to the spiritual and thus ok to be neglected. To the contrary, unless discipline is manifested in the physical side of life, rarely will there ever be many great moments spiritually. It is wise to put our physical house in order so we are able to receive the things of the spirit without falling asleep or having a heart attack.
As always, Blessings 2 You!
Wow . . . and I thought Army basic training was tough !
I need this reminder. Not that I took stellar care of it in the past but one of the "quirks" I developed after my cancer diagnosis was anger towards my physical body. Though I knew it was nonsense, I felt like it had "betrayed" me, gone mutant on me and yes, I really struggled against feeling angry, not at myself but my body.
Ironically, out of that came an incredible appreciation for it. I came to really understand what an amazing thing it is and that it is a gift from God. Instead of seeing a sick and broken-down body, I watched how it would relentlessly fight back when the immune system got blown to bits so to speak. I am in awe of how it went into "red alert" when I had my rupture, shutting down everything which was non-essential, "clamping down" things to contain the hemorrhage and then getting to work at cleaning up the "mess" in my brain. Amazing!
I am no longer angry at it. I am thankful that as beat-up as it is, the body God gave me is in reality a very good and "faithful" one. I need to take care of it.
Wow, I certainly did not have such a extreme beginning to my theological training, in fact taking care one ones physical body was not part of the syllabus. But thankfully over the years my wife and I have been guided by God to value our bodies and to eat correctly, so much so that during my illnesses I have been drawn to homeopathy as a from of remedy.
Good blog with an important message, for our bodies are the temple of the HS and as I read the building of the earthly temples no expense was spared and in the Law there were provisions to cleanse the temple from mould etc. All pointing to the fact that our bodies should be kept clean and pure for the HS dwelling as much as we are able.