Therefore, I urge you, brothers and sisters, in view of God’s mercy, to offer your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and pleasing to God—this is your true and proper worship. (Romans 12:1)
Many people are frustrated about their spiritual lives. They feel they need to grow, but often they are discouraged by their lack of progress. They try so hard to become better Christians, but they end up repeating the same old mistakes that tend to make them lose hope. The key is to focus on vital behaviors that can significantly alter the course and quality of our lives in disproportionate ways. It’s the principle of leverage. You focus on a few crucial behaviors that can place you in a position where you can experience more of God’s grace. Ultimately, of course, it’s all about God’s grace. The key is not to try harder, but to train in such a way that you place yourself in a situation where God’s grace can flow more into your life, to enable you to do what you cannot do by yourself otherwise. It’s all about cooperation, not trying harder.
Now, to begin, you need to focus on the physical aspect of your life. Yes, you heard me. Focus first on the physical aspect. In as much as we want to grow spiritually, we need to understand that we are a unified being. Our body is not an unnecessary shell that we just carry around with us wherever we go. Our body is part of who we are. We are a living soul, and that includes our body. You cannot do anything in this world apart from your body. If you do not focus on your body first, there’s nothing that you can really do about any other aspect of your life. Now, of course, I do not mean to say that there’s nothing you can do if you do not have a complete healthy body. Many people who are in that kind of situation can still do a lot of things. Nothing is impossible if someone is determined and if he or she would trust in God’s grace. But my point is that your body is the means through which you will be able to live your life here on earth. So if you do not train your body to submit to God, nothing else will work. Your spirituality begins with your body. This is why we must offer our bodies first to God as a living sacrifice. Regardless of the condition of our body, whether we are healthy or not, we must offer it. You must surrender your ownership of your body and offer it to the One who truly has the right to own it. In other words, God must own our bodies if we are to succeed in walking or following Jesus Christ. So the key to becoming a faithful and fruitful follower of Christ, and so to experience a better life, is to offer your body to God and let Him be the Lord of your body. Why don’t you do that starting today. Start with your body. That’s where all your spirituality will begin. Shalom! (PB)