Day 2

Day 2: Physical Self-Care

1 Corinthians 6:19-20: “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.”

Lesson: As Christians, we have a tendency to create a dichotomy between the body and the soul in which the two are viewed as entirely separate and often opposed to one another. We may have even been taught that our body is prone to weakness and focused only on the pursuit of unholy desires. As such, we prioritize care of the soul over care of the body. In reality, the body and the soul are deeply intertwined and interconnected in our earthly human experience, and we actually care for our soul when we care for our bodies.

God cares about our physical bodies, and the health of our physical body correlates to the health of our mind and soul too. After Elijah has a powerful showdown with prophets of Baal in which he wins an incredible victory with the power of God, he receives death threats from the King’s wife and flees in fear. Overcome by anxiety and depression, he prays that he might die. In response to his mental and spiritual anguish, God sends an angel to offer physical care. The angel encourages him to eat and drink and allows him time to rest. God knew that to overcome his mental and spiritual crisis, Elijah first needed to restore and strengthen his physical body.

During this season of mental, physical, spiritual, and relational stress and struggle, it is so easy to neglect care for our body. We turn to junk food and binge-watching Netflix to cope with anxiety and find comfort. But, as the opening verse and the story of Elijah remind us, caring for our bodies is a spiritual concern. Physical self-care allows us to strengthen not only our bodies but our mind and soul as well, which will allow us to experience greater joy in the midst of the chaos. Our bodies matter to God, and our bodies matter for our spiritual and mental well-being. 

Activity: Read Elijah’s story (1 Kings 19:1-9). Do a quick self-assessment of the positive and negative ways you treat your body. Pray and ask God to help you better care for your body. Here are some suggestions for physical self-care:
  • Replace unhealthy snacks with healthy alternatives such as fresh fruits and veggies.
  • Drink more water and less soft drinks, energy drinks, and other beverages with high amounts of sugar and/or caffeine.
  • Find exercise routines you enjoy and can engage in regularly (walking/jogging, biking, yoga, online workout tutorials, etc.).
  • Don’t neglect your sleep. If you have trouble sleeping, try to set a regular bedtime and avoid caffeine late in the day and using electronics right before bed.
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