Have you ever missed church, work, or gathering with friends and family because you were not well?
Our greatest ability for God is our availability. However, this availability is not limited to time, it includes our well-being. And today we are going to examine what the Bible says about a healthy diet.
Today’s blog post is part 5 of our Healing Series. If you missed the previous parts in this series, we encourage you to read those blog posts, then come back here!
When we’re not well, it prevents us from fulfilling our purpose. We believe that this is such a pivotal component of our healing, we’re focusing the remaining of this series on how to take care of our spirit, soul, and body from a natural perspective.
1 Corinthians 6:19-20 AMPC says; Do you not know that your body is the temple (the very sanctuary) of the Holy Spirit Who lives within you, Whom you have received [as a Gift] from God? You are not your own, 20 You were bought with a price [purchased with a preciousness and paid for, made His own]. So then, honor God and bring glory to Him in your body.
Since our body is the temple of the Holy Spirit, shouldn’t we prioritize taking care of it?
Honoring God With A Healthy Diet
Honoring God is more than going to church, reading our Bible, and praying. We honor God in the manner in which we live, how we speak to each other and how we take care of our bodies.
1 Corinthians 10:31 (AMPC) says, So then, whether you eat or drink, or whatever you may do, do all for the honor and glory of God.
It may sound strange that what we eat or drink brings honor to God, but how many of us know that God has a purpose for everything?
We know from 3 John 2 that God desires us to prosper in every way including our bodies. When we honor God in our bodies, consequently our bodies will prosper.
Dear friend, I hope all is well with you and that you are as healthy in body as you are strong in spirit. ~ 3 John 2
When we’re sick and tired, we aren’t available for anybody let alone God. So each of us must take ownership and determine how we can honor God with our bodies.
Food Is Medicine
There is a famous quote in the world of medicine that says….
“Let food be thy medicine and medicine be thy food” ~ Hippocrates
Hippocrates was a historic physician that left a permanent influence on the development of medicine.
He traveled widely throughout Greece and Asia teaching physicians that if they were going to perform their duty it was essential for them to know what man is. Recognizing what man is in relation to what he eats and drinks, his habits, and what the effect will be on each individual.
This is where the holistic approach to medicine began.
Not New Science
Keep in mind Hippocrates lived in the time frame of 460 BC died in 370 BC. So correlating food to our health is not new science this has been around for centuries. However, I love when medical science proves what God has been telling us since the beginning of time.
In part 3 of this series, we discussed our spiritual healing. We referenced the way Cancer Treatment Center of America treated patients with their integrative care (conventional care – chemo, radiation, and meds + support therapy) that included a spiritual component.
Learning about those support therapies was fascinating because it showed how research lined up with what the Bible says about our bodies.
Well, another support therapy they implement in their Integrative care is nutritional therapy.
From their studies, to maintain optimal health and energy they use Nutritional Health and Rehabilitation through naturopathic medicine and nutrition.
Naturopathic medicine focus on physical rehabilitation that we will go over in Part 6 of this series. However, Nutritional Health is obtained through nutrition therapy which is our focus today.
To achieve divine health, we must maintain a spiritual diet (eating the bread of life, which is God’s Word), and eat a healthy diet in the natural.
Cancer Treatment Center of America
CTCA approach to Nutrition Therapy- is concentrated on the Foods You Eat
Comprehensive nutritional assessment which consists of your condition and needs. This is where they recommend nourishing foods for their body. Foods that make your body strong.
They have found that the right foods boost the immune system helps fight side effects and speed recovery.
Over time they developed a standard that most patients need 5-9 servings of fruits and vegetables per day. Nuts, Seeds, and Oil (natural ways to get in omegas, and amino acids- chia seeds, and ground flaxseed).
Studies have shown it’s more beneficial to eat omegas and amino acids in your foods than to buy supplements.
We’ve become a microwave generation, wanting instant results with minimum effort. Instead of eating a healthy diet, some would rather eat junk and take supplements.
Although CTCA uses supplements and herbs with their patients, they conduct an extensive intake. This helps them determine the right supplements based on one’s health conditions, meds, and treatments.
As I studied CTCA, I wondered why they practice nutritional therapy as part of their integrative care. And I learned that from their studies they have found that…
- 80 % of adults living with cancer are malnourished.
- 1 in 2 Patients has some form of nutritional deficit at diagnosis.
- 65% of Patients take a nutritional supplement, but oftentimes the wrong supplements.
This made me think about Hippocrates who said, physicians should come to know that people are who they are, based on what they eat and their habits.
If nutrition has been proven to help our bodies, why not incorporate a healthy diet into our everyday life – caring for our temple in which the Holy Spirit resides?
Why wait until we are diagnosed with something?
What Can We Learn?
We can learn from these studies and Jesus who tells us to get creative with our knowledge. Let’s read what Jesus has to say in Luke 16.
Luke 16:1-9 (Message) says, Jesus is speaking to his disciples in one of his many teachable moments and as you know many times he spoke in parables, and this is one of them it’s about the story of a crooked manager. And because parables are sometimes hard to understand I’m going to read this to you in the Message version.
16 Jesus said to his disciples, “There was once a rich man who had a manager. He got reports that the manager had been taking advantage of his position by running up huge personal expenses. So he called him in and said, ‘What’s this I hear about you? You’re fired. And I want a complete audit of your books.’
3-4 “The manager said to himself, ‘What am I going to do? I’ve lost my job as manager. I’m not strong enough for a laboring job, and I’m too proud to beg. . . . Ah, I’ve got a plan. Here’s what I’ll do . . . then when I’m turned out into the street, people will take me into their houses.’
5 “Then he went at it. One after another, he called in the people who were in debt to his master. He said to the first, ‘How much do you owe my master?’
6 “He replied, ‘A hundred jugs of olive oil.’ “The manager said, ‘Here, take your bill, sit down here—quick now—write fifty.’ 7 “To the next he said, ‘And you, what do you owe?’ “He answered, ‘A hundred sacks of wheat.’“He said, ‘Take your bill, write in eighty.’
8-9 “Now here’s a surprise: The master praised the crooked manager! And why? Because he knew how to look after himself. Streetwise people are smarter in this regard than law-abiding citizens. They are on constant alert, looking for angles, surviving by their wits. I want you to be smart in the same way—but for what is right—using every adversity to stimulate you to creative survival, to concentrate your attention on the bare essentials, so you’ll live, really live, and not complacently just get by on good behavior.”
This is good wisdom and applies to every area of our life. However, today if you’re walking through a physical illness, Jesus wants you to take that adversity and let it motivate you to concentrate your attention on your health, so you can really live.
This means you may have to do something different than what you’ve always done. And if you don’t have a physical illness, wisdom would imply adopting a healthy diet that makes your body strong and honors God.
If doctors and nutritionists have determined and have been telling us since the begging of time that what we eat affects how we feel, shouldn’t we take heed and learn how to focus our attention on better eating?
Honoring God With A Healthy Diet
God is looking for people who will worship Him in spirit and in truth. How we take care of our bodies is part of our worship.
Romans 12:1-2 AMPC says, I appeal to you therefore, brethren, and beg of you in view of [all] the mercies of God, to make a decisive dedication of your bodies [presenting all your members and faculties] as a living sacrifice, holy (devoted, consecrated) and well pleasing to God, which is your reasonable (rational, intelligent) service and spiritual worship.
2 Do not be conformed to this world (this age), [fashioned after and adapted to its external, superficial customs], but be transformed (changed) by the [entire] renewal of your mind [by its new ideals and its new attitude], so that you may prove [for yourselves] what is the good and acceptable and perfect will of God, even the thing which is good and acceptable and perfect [in His sight for you].
Our body belongs to God and we must renew our minds to the way we care for our body (God’s temple).
The first thing we need to do is determine what is good for ourselves, each of us individually. What’s good for me may not be good for you.
For us personally, we eat a plant-based diet that may not be for you, but for us personally, we’ve studied, tested, and proved for ourselves that this way of eating is for us.
There are so many different healthy eating diets out there, it can be overwhelming. This is why we need the Holy Spirit, to help you identify what will help strengthen your body.
Just because the world sells processed and high sugar content foods, that doesn’t mean it’s for us.
1 Corinthians 6:12(AMPC) says, Everything is permissible (allowable and lawful) for me; but not all things are helpful (good for me to do, expedient and profitable when considered with other things). Everything is lawful for me, but I will not become the slave of anything or be brought under its power.
Don’t become a slave to your food or taste buds. If everything is permissible but not beneficial, that means we must prove for ourselves what is good and acceptable for our bodies.
We are all different. Some have a compromised system or allergies to foods that others don’t. Bottom line, it’s time for the body of Christ to take ownership of what we eat.
Proverbs 23:1 (AMCP) says, When you sit down to eat with a ruler, consider who and what are before you;
The “who” in the passage refers to a person. And then what” in this passage references a thing. A person is not a thing. Therefore, in this verse, a thing is the food that’s before you. In which we are to consider the food before us.
I’m not saying you can’t have chocolate cake ever, but what I am saying is that on a day-to-day basis, consider the food that’s set before, and ask yourself will this food bring honor to God? Will this food strengthen my body, immune system, or give me the strength I need to get through the day?
Too many of us believers are sick, eating what we want and giving no consideration to what’s before us.
Ephesians 6:13 (AMPC) says; Therefore put on God’s complete armor, that you may be able to resist and stand your ground on the evil day [of danger], and, having done all [the crisis demands], to stand [firmly in your place].
When you’re faced with physical illness and you’re crying out to God, ask yourself; have I done all that the crisis demands? Meaning have you…
- changed your environment?
- reduce your stress?
- changed your attitude?
- made adjustments to your eating habits?
These are questions God convicted us with as we’ve walked through our physical challenges. After realizing the role diet played in our healing, God placed it on our hearts to share with others not to wait until a diagnosis to maintain a healthy diet.
It’s one thing to be ignorant of manners and do things without having true knowledge of something. And praise God for his protection and grace over us when we’ve done those things.
But it’s another thing to know something and willfully do the opposite.
My Healthy Diet Revelation
Since being diagnosed with Rheumatoid Arthritis, my Rheumatologist regularly monitor my kidney and liver. For several months my doctor noticed my kidney numbers were elevated so she referred me to a kidney specialist.
The specialist decided to run additional tests, and because we were open to natural remedies to our health regimen, I asked while we were waiting on results, what can I do naturally to help reduce my numbers.
She suggested I avoid eating meat.
That night I went home and researched a plant-based diet. Not only did I eliminate meat, but I also eliminated all animal protein. In six weeks when I went back, the doctor asked me what did I do because my numbers reversed themselves.
I told her I took her advice and not only eliminated meat, but I also eliminated all animal protein. You see for me this was a matter of life or death so I made this decision cold turkey. There was no easing into it.
She went on to say that she had never seen numbers reverse that much in such a short period of time.
You only have to tell me once. I can pray all day long but until I made a decision to change what I ate, nothing changed. I praise God for his leading and using my blood work as a catalyst to do better.
This is a good lesson to watch what you pray for. I asked God to show me what I needed to do and then bam no meat, cheese, eggs, or butter. That was a huge adjustment, but the decision to implement a healthy diet with a plant-based diet saved my life!
Word of Caution
If you’re feeling convicted to change your eating habits, we want to encourage you to extend grace to others regarding their diet.
Nobody explains this better than Paul in Romans 14. (Consider reading the entire chapter). Although God has convicted our hearts, we want to refrain from condemning others for what they choose to eat.
In The End
Remember our main objective is to honor God in our bodies, and one of the ways we honor him is by considering the food before us. As a result, we can have a strong and prosperous body to fulfill the call God has on our lives.
We trust now that you understand why you should eat a healthy diet, it will motivate you to do the how.
This process is going to take some work! As you’ll need to research and study for yourself, so you can approve what’s an appropriate diet for you.
You may have to refrain from doing what you want to do and do what God is leading you to do. Either way, now that you know eating a healthy diet is necessary for divine health God will now hold you responsible for what you know.
PS..Looking for part 6 of the healing series, you can read that here.
~ Timberley Gray