We live in a world that worships the body. What I mean by that is, look at how much money and time is focused on dieting, fitness training, sports programs, pharmaceuticals, fast food joints, clothing stores – I could go on and on, but I digress.
Isn’t everything spiritual? Look at the above list and ask yourself, how effective and long-standing are those things? Does focusing on them and devoting our resources to one or all of them add anything of value to our lives? Can we, by virtue of our determination use any of these items to better our lives in the way our lives are to be lived?
I wanted to look further at how we were created as well as what the Bible says our being is intended for. In Genesis 6:3, God is saying that His Spirit will not contend with humans for a long time, for they are only mortal flesh. This statement was made prior to the Flood of the world. He said their hearts were evil all of the time. Are we much different than those humans prior to the Flood?
Isaiah 11:2 says, “And the ‘Spirit of the LORD will rest on him [Jesus Christ] – the Spirit of wisdom and understanding, the Spirit of counsel and might, the Spirit of knowledge and the fear of the LORD. He will delight in obeying the LORD. He will not judge by appearance nor make a decision based on hearsay.‘” Now I fully understand that Jesus is God and we are not, but my curiosity keeps coming back to the amount of time we spend trying to improve our flesh even though we are all aware that it will fail us if it hasn’t already. While on vacation with my family at Camp Arcadia, we listened to a Pastor (Randy Duncan) talking about “Soul Detox” and one of his main points was that, “we are souls with a body, not bodies with a soul.” That struck me in a way that opened my eyes to see things from a totally different perspective. Since then, I really have reassessed my priorities in how I spend my time, talents and treasures.
Church work centers on Christ and His active work in our lives. The impact of what Christ does in and through us isn’t, in my opinion, intended on preserving our bodies or making them function better. Rather, the purpose of Christ’s work is to prepare our souls through His Holy Spirit to receive Him in His glory. God must be shaking His head on a regular basis when He looks at how much time we spend on earthly things instead of heavenly things. Scripture is pretty clear on the affection of our love. 1 John 2:15-17 says, “Do not love this world nor the things it offers you, for when you love the world, you do not have the love of the Father in you. For the world offers only a craving for physical pleasure, a craving for everything we see, and pride in our achievements and possessions. These are not from the Father, but are from this world. And this world is fading away, along with everything that people crave. But anyone who does what pleases God will live forever.”
The friction we think, feel and know in this world is sometimes intoxicating to the point that we give up on the spirit and soul and default into the body and its fickle desires. May you learn and know that we are indeed “souls with bodies” and refocus your day-to-day lives with a heart of what God has already placed inside of your soul to live for Him. “Now may the God of peace make you holy in every way, and may your whole spirit and soul and body by kept blameless until our LORD Jesus Christ comes again. God will make this happen, for He who calls you is faithful.” (1 Thessalonians 5:23-24)