Christ is Risen, Indeed He is Risen. We are an Easter people! This amazing truth should have a radical impact on our understanding of ourselves. It should influence us to view our lives as gifts.  Christ died for our sins and rose again from the dead in His totality. He did not leave his body in the tomb. If the body was something to “rid ourselves of,” as the Manichiests believed, Christ would not have appeared in a Glorified body at the Resurrection and Ascension. By doing so, the great truth that our bodies are good and should be seen as a gift is proclaimed.

The Body As A Gift

In his first letter to the people of Corinth, St. Paul writes, “Do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit within you, which you have from God? You are not your own; you were bought with a price. So glorify God in your body.”[1] Your body is a temple, it is a sign to others of the goodness of God within us. Through the gift of our bodies, we are able to be instruments of God’s love to a world in need of His presence. We can literally be the face of God to others.

So what does this mean for us in terms of our health and wellness? Should we be hyper-focused on our bodies? Should we primarily focus on what we look like or how we appear to others? Many may find themselves at one extreme or the other. Some may focus too much on the physical body, spending all of their time and energy on what they eat, how they dress, or how they exercise. When we do this, we fall into the temptation of making our bodies and how they appear an idol in our lives. On the other extreme, it can be tempting to only focus on the spiritual, seeing the body as the instrument we have now to live in, but that our interior and prayer life are all we need to focus on. In this extreme, we forget the great gift we have received in our bodies.

While both of these are based on partial truths, we are called to live in the fullness of the truth of the person given by God. We are made for relationship with God and others. We live in the fullness of truth by striving for wellness and peace in our whole person, including our physical health. Our physical body and our whole health, are gifts we receive from the Lord that enable us to bring his love to others. But our attention to them must be rightly ordered.

Caring for the Whole Person

We are called to live in the fullness of the gift that we are as human persons, without letting the gift itself become an idol. When you are in ill-health do you find that you cannot pray well, or discern and freely choose to follow the promptings of the Lord to love others? Whether it be in times of poor emotional health, physical tiredness, or perhaps pain and discomfort, we are reminded that the healthy functioning of our physical body is an essential part of our life with Christ.

One way we can take care of our bodies is by paying attention to what we put into them. This does not mean we need to follow some strict and rigorous diet that causes us to judge ourselves. Being mindful of what we eat can be as simple as looking at the My Plates guidelines of what we should be including on our plates during meals (ie. Proteins, starches, vegetables, etc). It may also include paying attention to foods that may cause you adverse effects, such as headaches or stomach cramping. To learn more about healthy eating, check out the course Trends in Nutrition available to CURO members on your CURO portal.

CURO Whole Health Resources

Another great way is to participate in this month’s Eat Well Challenge. Every day in May, you can log on to your member portal to select different ways you have chosen healthy meal options. Join other CURO members and be entered to win Visa Gift Cards.  

As we strive for whole person wellness of spirit, mind, and body, take an honest assessment of where you are. Where in your life are you being called to grow closer to the Lord? Is your physical health keeping you from serving the Lord in the way you desire? Are you too concerned with your physical health to the detriment of your spiritual life? We challenge you to surrender whatever is keeping you from the Lord, and to strive for the freedom He desires to give you.

[1] 1 Corinthians 6: 19-20