I have a cool idea. I’m thinking of getting a tattoo emblazoned on my stomach saying; “Do Not Litter” in cool gothic font.

Awesome eh?

It could be all the rage with cool, Christian hipsters with their flowing beards, skinny jeans and tattoos. The only problem is I can’t fit into skinny jeans.

Anyway, back to my story. I envision walking down a beach and everyone staring at my stomach tattoo. I stop to tell them its meaning explaining to them that my body is a temple of the Holy Spirit. Then I have a reality check and foresee myself talking to them in between mouthfuls of a hot dog and potato chips. Mmm, I love hot dogs with mustard and ketchup and a good bag of chips along with a nice ice-cold Coke.

Health is a gift to enjoy that we can utilize to bring God glory. Tweet This

And, there in lies my problem and most likely your problem too—many of us don’t take good care of ourselves. Which, truth be told, must be a slap in God’s face since he created us as his workmanship to do good works (See Ephesians 2:10). A healthy body allows us to serve God and others at peak efficiency to the glory our Father (Matthew 5:16).

What a gift it is to surrender our bodies to God which, we are told, is our true spiritual worship (Romans 12:1). I wonder what type of worship I am involved in with this body I surrender to God?

Health is a gift to enjoy that we can utilize to bring God glory.

God’s Word tells us our bodies are the temple of the Holy Spirit (1 Corinthians 6:19). So, why do we litter so much in the temple? A healthy body leads to healthy spirituality. Our body, soul, spirit all affect each other—a wonderful three in one.

God values our bodies. He created them and desires health for our bodies. It’s no surprise that Jesus performed miracles by restoring health to sick people. But truth be told—not many of us appreciate our health.

Think about your typical routine. You rush out the door and grab a Timmies, “Double, Double” on the way to work. If your office is not on the ground floor you take the elevator—why take the stairs, right? You sit at a desk in front of a computer or some other form of solitary confinement all day. Then you drive home, eat dinner and sit on the couch in front of the TV to watch fit people run or skate around as you drink pop and eat chips.

Those of us with kids get back in the car and drive our kids to their game and watch them play while drinking another “Timmies” and a donut to boot (and we wonder where the word “Daddy’s body” came from).

You know what the “Big Scare” is? It’s when we get sick or are involved in an accident and all of a sudden health matters. Good eating and exercise becomes something we wish we took seriously.

Sound familiar? It is to me. I take my health for granted… that is until I get sick. That is when the “Big Scare” happens. You know what the “Big Scare” is? It’s when we get sick or are involved in an accident and all of a sudden health matters. Good eating and exercise becomes something we wish we took seriously.

I’ve had my share of “Big Scares” in my life—putting a hole in a kidney from a ski accident, flesh eating disease from mouldy hockey gear, Crohn’s Disease, a broken neck from an ocean wave (who needs a tattoo when you have a cool scar on your neck like I do) and now—drum roll please—“Kidney Stones”.

As I write these words I’m hopped up on drugs recovering from a painful bout of “Kidney Stones” and wishing I took better care of my temple. It’s at this time I wish I cut back on my salt intake. I know this now thanks to my family who told me too much salt is a pre-curser for developing kidney stones.

Yes, they googled kidney stones while I writhed in excruciating pain in the emergency room. I love my family but at that time I didn’t need to hear their laughing as they reminded me of how much salt I pour on my steaks, fries, potatoes, eggs, vegetables and… well you get the drift.

Yes, the “Big Scare” speaks to me again. Will I listen?

How about you? Will you listen to your weight scale, your doctor, your wife, your body, your God?

Though these verses refer to sexual sin I believe they can also relate to our physical health: “Do you not know that your bodies are temples of the Holy Spirit, who is in you, whom you have received from God? You are not your own; you were bought at a price. Therefore honor God with your bodies” (1 Corinthians 6:19, 20).

Yes, let’s honour God with our bodies in holiness and holy health—no littering in the temple. Maybe I should get that tattoo after all?

Colin McCartney is an ordained minister, speaker, and a bestselling author. He is also the founder of UrbanPromise Toronto and now leads Connect Ministries in Toronto where he, his wife Judith, and their two children.

THIS ARTICLE WAS ORIGINALLY FEATURED IN SEVEN MAGAZINE.

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