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Today’s Truth

Do you not know that your body is a temple 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 body.

1 Corinthians 6:19, NIV

Friend to Friend

I have struggled with weight issues since I was a little girl. Part of my struggle is rooted in “fluffy” genes lovingly passed down to me through several generations of “fluffy” relatives. The remainder of my struggle is firmly rooted in the fact that I hate exercise, take medications that cause weight gain, enjoy eating, and sometimes use food as an emotional outlet and reward.

I was a young adult and living on my own before I realized that part of the creation process included green things called vegetables. The motto in our family was, “If it ain’t fried, it ain’t right.” Gravy was a condiment and potatoes a staple at every meal. No bread? How can you have a meal without bread? And dessert was a necessity. Get the picture?

Over the years, I have tried just about every diet I could find. I could always lose weight. I just could not keep it off. The day came when I threw in the towel.

My name is Mary, and I am a Carboholic.

I was done. I was burned out on diets and quick fixes. I didn’t want to be a certain size. I just wanted to feel good and to be as healthy as I could possibly be at this point in my life.

I went to a highly-recommended Christian nutritionist who asked me to complete a packet of 500 questions (not kidding), did an EKG, ran more blood tests than I have ever had run in my life, and introduced me to the coolest machine that measures fat and muscle in the body. After all the tests were in, Dr. Tague smiled at me and calmly said, “Mary, you are a malnourished woman.”

My mouth literally fell open in shock. At the time, I was at least 50 pounds overweight and ate pretty much everything in sight whenever I felt the slightest twinge of hunger. How could I possibly be malnourished?

The doctor went on to explain that I was indeed eating … but I was eating all the wrong things … at all the wrong times. In fact, I was dangerously low in several key vitamins and minerals. He handed me a small paper cup filled with a mixture of those vitamins and minerals to take before leaving his office and said, “If you were my patient in the hospital, I would not release you until some of these levels came up.” Now he had my undivided attention.

God often works the same way.

I spend more time working on ministry checklists than I spend in God’s Word.

Prayer is more often a drive-through event than the sit-down-at-His-feet experience it should be.

I give God the leftovers of my day when I should purposefully plan my time with Him.

Rather than investing time in relationships, I follow friends on Facebook or text them to ease my guilt.

I choose what is easiest and more convenient in ministry instead of choosing the best part of ministry, which is often messy and inconvenient.

I often allow the hedges of protection to go untended, resulting in a lack of boundaries and margins in my life.

I allow myself to become a malnourished Christian.

God then lovingly but unquestionably gets my attention in several ways – a crisis that knocks every prop but Him out from under me, or an illness that rips every choice out of my hands and really makes me stop. I can then get the spiritual nourishment that really feeds my soul. Nourishment like sustaining time in the Word of God … significant, life-giving time in prayer … nurturing time with encouraging friends … opportunities to give myself away in service.

After following the carefully laid out plan of my nutritionist for two years, I have lost 65 pounds, but that is not the best or most important news. I feel better than I have felt in many years! My blood work, EKGs, and BMI (body mass index) are all perfect. And the doctor has now pronounced me a well-nourished woman.

I want to be a well-nourished Christian. I am taking the next year to get my spiritual ducks in a row. I am seeking God on what I should and should not do. I am setting boundaries and asking my husband and accountability group to hold my feet to the fire in keeping those boundaries firmly in place. I am practicing saying “no.” I am bringing order to any areas of chaos. I am resting beside the still waters. And I know He will restore my soul just as He has restored my body in so many ways.

How about you? Are you a malnourished Christian? Today is the day to take a step toward spiritual health!

Let’s Pray

Father, I celebrate the amazing truth that You chose to live in me and that my body is Your temple. Please forgive me when I abuse that temple. And I am so sorry for the many times that I neglect You, Lord. Forgive me when I fail to spend time in Your Word and at Your feet in prayer. I need Your strength and power to practice Godly discipline. I want to become healthy in every area of my life – for my good and for Your glory.

In Jesus’ Name,

Amen.

Now It’s Your Turn

Evaluate your physical and spiritual health. Use the lists below to help you get started. What steps do you need to take to be healthier? Make a plan to get started today.

 

Physical

___Diet

___Exercise

___Sleep

Spiritual

___Time in the Word

___Prayer

___Service

More from the Girlfriends

Need help knowing how to become a healthy Christian? Check out Mary’s new E-Book, Fit for Life. Be sure to check out the FREE MP3s on Mary’s website. Connect with Mary through email or on Facebook.

10 Responses to “Time for a Spiritual Checkup”

  1. Meg says:

    Wow! We are so very similar. I am doing so much better with the health issues (nutrition, lupus, pain) and have been doing better with my spiritual life too now that my husband has a new church. I was shown just last night in the wee hours of the morning that I still have a long way to go. And you know what? Instead of feeling condemned, I’m excited! He wants to spend more time with me?!?!?! Think about that! I’ve never felt so loved! He wants me in prayer more, talking of Him more, staying in scripture more so He can fill my cup. Why wouldn’t I do that? Why do I even pull back? To me that’s the mystery. Why would I not want more time with Him? So glad He doesn’t give up on me.

  2. Barbie says:

    I needed these words today, Thank You! The struggle is real!

  3. Pam says:

    Mary, I have loved you since first starting to read GIG devotions, but I think has become my top favorite! Thanks you for sharing! Prayers for you , your struggles and your ministry! Pam

  4. Delilah says:

    Just needed to thank God for sending me Gigs! The morning devotional has greatly helped me ,the last year and a half, by keeping me accountable and guiding me in prayer. I used to wake up and just get to my devo. It became easier to remember and routine with time. Now the devotional is a PART of my morning prayers. I pray more and more women will find GiG!!!

  5. Kathy says:

    AMEN! I had the exact same thing told to me by a doctor. I was 100 lbs overweight and he said I was malnourished. I couldn’t believe it. After all the tests and blood work, and a trip to the urgent care, where the doctor wanted to put me in the hospital. My doctor (I also worked for) said he would keep and eye on me. They gave me an IV, kept me a few more hours and about a month later after my iron would not come back up with meds, or shots. I ended up in surgery. I was 42 yrs old and felt like I was 80 yrs old most days. Now, after getting my diet balanced and losing 70 lbs. I was able to get off of all (12 prescriptions) but 1 Rx. No more heartburn, fatigue, pain in my joints, nor have I had a migraine in almost 5 yrs. And the depression, and anxiety let up a lot by changing foods. It has been the past two years of seeking God regularly, that has drawn me into now knowing I cannot go without time with Him first. My spiritual walk, life has strengthened exponentially. Thank you for this article, Thank you Meg for your reply it is so encouraging to know I am not the only one that has struggled in this area. God bless all.

  6. Kathy says:

    This is timely and inspiring. I am both a malnourished woman from neglecting my diet and exercise routine which then affects my motivation and energy and sleep. I am also a malnourished Christian, perfect analogy. I so need to make my time with God, my self-care for the temple a priority. Loved this devotional reminder. Would love a couple of other biblical supporting verses which I will go look for in my personal commitment to this project.

  7. Leisa says:

    Wow! This is me! May God help me to commit to a change!

  8. Juanita says:

    Thank you for this all-important and timely reminder today to do the 2 things I need to get back to – regular quality time with the Lord and taking better care of my physical health through healthier eating and exercise.
    Blessings!

  9. Lisa says:

    Perfect timing!!!!😁 ❤️ ❤️ ❤️

  10. Barbara says:

    Hi Mary. Such a wonderful and timely word. Thank you for you honestly, openness and transparency to be ‘real’ and share that ‘realness’ with others.

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"We loved you so much that we were delighted to share with you not only the gospel of God but our lives as well…" 1 Thessalonians 2:8