Changing a lifetime of indulgence is hard. It’s a sacrifice. Choices of need for fuel and best function get lost in a craving for fulfillment. A desire to help my body function at its best helps me make healthier choices. Indulgence is pleasure. Better choices are sometimes less appealing to the palate and therefore, easier to avoid.
Yet, to forgo desire and meet a crucial need to build and nurture cells is thinking beyond today. It’s thinking: How does this affect my blood sugar? How will this sugar spike and fall affect my blood vessels? Will it make me weaker or stronger? Asking good questions prepares the mind for renewal. While also preparing the body for renewal. All for the sake of honoring it and preparing it for it’s best potential.
“Therefore, I urge you, brothers, in view of God’s mercy, to offer your bodies as living sacrifices, holy and pleasing to God—–this is your spiritual act of worship. Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is——His good, pleasing, and perfect will.”
Thoughts, attitudes, daily habits, and desires of the flesh, are very difficult to change. I struggle every day.
The Word of God says:
1. Offer your bodies as living sacrifices
2. Be transformed by the renewing of your mind
3. Test and approve what God’s will is
It helps me to know that there is much more complexity to the surroundings in life than me. Life outside of me is broad in it’s diversity and deep in ingrained ideas and I am a very small part of it’s existence. Yet, in a small way, I am a vital part of it’s growth and maturity. I have an innate responsibility to help those in my sphere of influence to be the strongest they can be.
You do too!
What does it mean to offer ourselves as living sacrifices——our acts of spiritual worship? It means to share your talent and gifts with others!
Paul says in Romans 12, “If a man’s gift if prophesying, let him use it in proportion to his faith. If it is serving, let him serve; if it is teaching, let him teach, if it is encouraging, let him encourage; if it is contributing to the needs of others, let him give generously; if it is leadership let him govern diligently; if it is showing mercy, let him do it cheerfully.”
You and I can’t do these tasks if we focus on meeting our own fleshly desires rather than renewing our minds.
This is so hard! Habits of indulgence make us feel instant gratification, yet if you’re paying close attention……miserable for the duration! For me it’s sugary foods. Indulging in that super sweet cake always feels good while it’s occurring, but the consequences are always misery. Hence, fatigue, muscle aches, irritable bowels, weight gain, sleepiness and lack of interest or desire to do anything follow that choice.
Overindulgence for others may be:
1.Excessive smoking…..How has that limited you as the years pass by?
2. Drinking Alcohol……Who do you see influenced negatively by drunkenness or weakened to imbibe excessively?
3. Selfishness……Has meeting your own needs and putting them above others limited your relationships?
God’s word says, “Test and approve of what God’s will is—–His good, pleasing and perfect will.
Furthermore, I believe His will for you and me is to be the best we can be while we are here. My friend, that entails sacrificing our bodies’ desires for overindulgence. Moreover, avoiding continual self pleasure. At the same time seeking to fill areas of need for others. We are to exert the fruit of the spirit called, self-control. As we put off things that weaken the body physically and mentally. Strength like that comes only through prayer and continually focusing on God.
Often I hear, “I can’t cook for one” or “The recipes are always for 6-8 servings and that’s too much.”
Do you ever consider how it might bless a neighbor to take them a couple of servings? In addition to reaching out to them in a hospitable way, the offer would break tension or awkwardness. Besides, you’ll be surprised at the joy God gives you in return!
Energize and fuel that body today, to go and meet someone else’s needs!