This article first appeared in the January/February edition of SEVEN Magazine. You can read or subscribe for free to the magazine at https://www.promisekeepers.ca/seven/mens-health/
When I was a teenager, I could eat almost anything I wanted to eat—and I could eat as much as I wanted to eat. Late night pizza, cream pies, and bacon—lots of bacon—were all part of the normal routines. As I moved towards my adult years, those same patterns continued and I did not give them a second thought until one day when my kids came home from school.
One of our children drew a picture of our family. As I stared at the stick figure handiwork of my son, I could make out everyone in the family except for me. I asked my son where I was and he pointed to the person in the middle who looked more like a tire than a stick figure.
Nobody warned me of (or I was not paying attention to) the effects on my life and body from when I would eat too much food, too much of the wrong food, and fail to exercise regularly.
However, there was so much more happening than just the effect on my physical body. What I truly failed to believe is that my body is the temple of the Holy Spirit, and that God entrusts to me the responsibility to care for this body that He dwells in. I was unintentionally damaging my own ability to have a great physical life AND a great spiritual life.
Fortunately, there are far more conversations today about health than there were even 20 years ago. There are far more resources available to help you pursue healthy living.
This edition of SEVEN is going to pursue the topic of Men and Health.
I recognize that some of you may be reading this and you are already experiencing some difficult health issues that may be out of your control. The Bible teaches us that as important as our bodies are, they are still only temporary. Our hope is not in our health, but our hope is in the One who is our healer and who will ultimately resurrect us.
Some readers will find themselves in my story. You may find yourself in a difficult health situation, but there is still something you can do about it. I want to encourage you to discipline yourself and care for the body God has given to you—by the power of the Spirit of God, you can do this!
You may already be healthy, and think this edition of the magazine is not for you. I want to encourage you to not take your health for granted. Be grateful for it every day, and be disciplined to care for your body. You will thank yourself in the future, and you will also be honouring God with your choices.
As your brother in Christ, I urge you to care for your health. You will bless yourself, your family, and God when you do this.