Have you ever had a moment that completely changed the trajectory of your life? One of those for me was the most miserable I have ever been in my life. I was in my dorm room sophomore year of college, curled up in a ball, my gut on fire. What is going on, Lord?
While lying there, I didn’t realize the food poisoning I was experiencing wouldn’t just be a day or two ordeal. Many months later I found myself at a gastroenterologist and was given the option of a colonoscopy. Not much of an option in my opinion. I had been sitting through college lectures with my stomach in a knot just because I had eaten lunch. Daily diarrhea became the new norm. As a 21 year old though, I was determined that I would not put up with what had become IBS (irritable bowel syndrome, triggered by the food poisoning) for the rest of my life.
Beyond this, I was dealing with hormonal imbalances which were brought on by poor dietary choices in high school and perpetual poor diet and exercise choices in college. The juxtaposition was startling: while I thought I was doing the whole “health” thing the right way, my body was a complete wreck. And although I claimed to be a follower of Christ, my choices were based on what the culture was telling me was the ideal diet and exercise plan. My purpose had become centered on glorifying my body by looking a certain way.
After years of bringing destruction to my body, I knew I had to do something about it. It became apparent that, as a follower of Christ, “doing something about it” meant that I needed to surrender my entire life to Him, which included my physical body. I came to my end. I had to let my lifestyle choices, like the food I ate, and my mindset on health be shaped and directed by the Lord.
It was His truth I needed to permeate every part of my life, including my body and the choices I made regarding it.
Beyond the specific changes to my lifestyle, although important, more critical was the why behind it. The deep renewal of my mindset. He showed me what it means for my purpose to be rooted in glorifying Him with my lifestyle choices. Why my physical health and lifestyle choices do matter as a follower of Christ. How it’s all connected on such a broader scope than I ever expected. It was this which propelled me to make change. To dig into the root cause of the chaos happening in my body. To be intentional with the choices I made in getting back to the basics of His original design rather than the world’s ways.
It became simple. And although it was slow, it was incredible to watch my body begin functioning the way God created it to once again—even more optimally than before.
What I’ve learned is this: we live in a world which is constantly bombarding us with fake news and false promises contrary to the Gospel and Biblical truth. If we aren’t deliberately seeking Him in every area of our lives, we will be swayed by the world.
I don’t know where you are. Where on the spectrum of health to disease. If you’ve ever thought about your lifestyle choices in light of Biblical truth or not. What your relationship with food is. I pray you’ve never experienced the health complications or skewed view of eating and exercise that I have.
Wherever you are, I encourage you to pursue Him and allow Him to shape your perspective and purpose and choices in every area of your life.
If you want to go deeper into why our physical health and lifestyle choices do matter in light of Biblical truth, Noelle invites you to download her 3-day devotional, Rooted: connecting nutrition & wellness to faith as a follower of Christ. In it, you will explore three key Biblical truths that address why our physical health is important.