Here's a good end times topic: health. God's
responsibility - and yours and mine?
We are exhorted in Scripture to take care of our bodies -–
the house which contains our spirit and soul during our sojourn here on earth.
Many church folk tend to glorify their spiritual state above their physical
well-being, contrary to Romans 12:1 and related Scriptures. We are whole
beings -– spirit, soul and body, and answerable to God for the
stewardship of the entire package. 1 Corinthians 6:20 reminds us "Ye
are bought with a price; therefore glorify God in your body, and in your spirit
which are God's."
Certain health related issues are completely in our control,
and perhaps we need to open up to re-education on nutritional matters. Speaking
to many Pacific Island people (being half-Samoan myself), we tend to stumble
over certain cultural challenges...but it is a struggle well worth the energy -
too many of our people perish through 'lack of knowledge'.
A friend of my father's, Bud Curtis used to say "Drain
the swamp or fight the alligators" which is another way of saying what the
scriptures state -– what a person sows, they will also reap in due course. Many
believers would call my stance contrary to' living by faith' -– and I would
say: it most certainly is not!
There exists a false balance with many western Christian
people, who frequent healing prayer lines -– whilst maintaining life in the
stressed out fast lane, not disciplining themselves to get adequate sleep
and eating diets which are not conducive to maintaining healthy bodies. "How
are you Sam?" I ask. "I'm under some sort of attack" he says "will you
pray for me". Of course I'm happy to pray, but "Are you getting adequate
sleep?" "Ah - not really, but can you pray now, I've got to get off to a
I often hear chatter about what is labelled new age OR called
eastern religion in the area of nutrition and health, when it is simply not! Our
long term consumption of certain western food items could easily be viewed as
dangerous and even 'evil', because they have health implications attached
which we know about, but perhaps refuse to acknowledge. All practises from 'the
East' are not evil. Other cultures, whilst different from our own often have
plenty of good solid thinking and tradition to back up their 'wholistic
approach' to life. I think its time we started thinking more wholistically!
Individual discernment is required: to ensure obedience to God, and not
adherence to peer pressure.
Often times, our spirit is willing, but our flesh weak -– in
moments of weakness we may indulge in areas we know have no merit to our
physical state -– we are to live freely, making our own decisions, but also
wisely and purposefully.
Other times we suffer through ignorance, not knowing what to
believe because of the barrage of commercial propaganda thrown in our direction.
Either way, knowingly or ignorantly -– sowing and reaping is
at work daily and one should remember: "If we don't change the direction we're
going, we'll end up where we're headed". As with any area of faith -– we
do the possible, God is responsible for the impossible.
A New Zealand specialist in 'fats and oils' Professor
Brian Shorland (who died in 1999), campaigned against the consumption of
polyunsaturated fats for many years -– and was regarded by nutritionalists and
food producers as a crackpot.
His findings have since been vindicated: Rural News,
14 October 2002, "...he warned against the push in North America in the
1950-60s to raise polyunsaturate [consumption] in the wrong proportions. This
went with a campaign against fats, leading to high carbohydrate consumption and
so to obesity and the plague of diabetes that's upon us...
'...he was one of the first to point out the stupidity of
feeding milk biscuits to people who hadn't developed the enzymes needed to
cope with the milk sugars the biscuits contained.'
He wanted our grass-raised animals fats -– butter and meat
-– restored to their appropriate place in our diets. And he pointed out the 'dark'
side of vegetable oils used to make margarine and to enhance many processed
foods -– just read the labels...
Margarine -– 'spread' as retailers now call it -– is
made by heating oil and bubbling hydrogen through it causing it to thicken.
Shorland says the 'platelets' produced by this process
are implicated in the clotting of blood, raising the risk of thrombosis -–
heart attacks and strokes -– in persons with narrowed arteries."
We are at liberty to decide for ourselves how we will treat
'our temple'. I encourage you -– allow God to renew your 'youth'
through looking after your body. Psalm 103:2,5 "Bless the Lord, O my soul, and
forget not all of his benefits. Who forgiveth all thine iniquities; who healeth
all thy diseases; who redeemath thy life from destruction; who crowneth thee
with lovingkindness and tender mercies; who satisfieth thy mouth with good
things; so that thy strength is renewed like the eagles"