In today’s scripture, the apostle Paul speaks about the outer and inner man.
Singaporeans are health conscious and invest a lot of time and money on our outer self, even waking up extra early to exercise, go running, jogging, cycling, etc. We also eat healthy food and vitamins for our bodies to stay strong and healthy.
But how much extra time and money do we invest for the health of our inner man? Have we realised we need to spend extra time in prayer and reading the bible for our inner self to be healthy? When was the last time we checked up on our inner self?
May God bless every member with health, both physically and inwardly. So that even though our outer man is decaying daily, we can have hope that our inner man is being renewed daily.
What should we do to maintain the health of our inner self?
In Luke 21:34-36 Jesus tells us to be on guard so that our hearts and inner self will not be weighed down by the cares of this life. If our inner self is sick, judgment will come suddenly upon us like a trap. We need to have prayers and be spiritually alert to be in connection with God.
That way we’ll have a strong and healthy inner and outer self to overcome all tribulations, stand before the Son of Man, and receive His rewards and His praise.
Our outer man matures and ages as time passes but our inner man should mature and not age. Like how there are people in their 90s who say: My heart is youthful as a teenager’s. Spiritually may we have that strength that will never run out.
May this blessing of gaining new strength in Isaiah 40:28-31 be given to all of us. That means we have to wait upon the Lord. This wait is not passive waiting, it is like a waiter seeking to serve the Lord, asking what God desires and doing it.
Our inner self includes our spirit, soul and mind. Jesus said that in order for our inner self to see eternity and be healthy, we have to love our God with all our soul, might and mind. Our spirit, soul and mind must love the Lord.
More specifically, our inner self becomes strengthened through the Word. For our spirit to be well, we need to receive the power of God’s Word. Through it, we receive the power of the Spirit of God which empowers us. (Ephesians 3:16)
Which is healthier? Binge eating, or balanced eating? You see the difference between unhealthy vs healthy lifestyles when viruses attacks, as to which lifestyle has the stronger immunity to fight back.
Is your inner self spiritually anorexic or bulimic? For example, we eat a big spiritual meal on Sundays and stop for the rest of the week. We read 5 chapters of the bible and stop for a month. When Satan attacks and trials and tribulations come, do we have the spiritual immunity to stay strong in faith, and do we have the ability to fight back against Satan? That’s why prayer and receiving the Word of God needs to be done daily.
3 John 1:2 (ESV)
Beloved, I pray that all may go well with you and that you may be in good health, as it goes well with your soul.
When our inner self is doing well and strong, our visible life will reflect that also. It is the inner self that seeks eternity, and I pray that our inner self will become revived in 2022.
Proverbs 17:20-22 tells us that the condition of our hearts and minds are very important. It controls even our bodies and our lives. A joyful heart is good medicine.
Our mind needs to be healthy for our inner self to be healthy. Our inner self includes spirit, soul and mind. It doesn’t include our physical heart. When we think about our minds, we think about mental health and EQ which is emotional intelligence. Those with high EQ has a high balance of emotional state, and have a high chance of doing well in social, parental and other relationships. Higher EQ will result in a better chance in better relationships.
Earlier we studied that we need to receive the Word of God and love God with all our might, soul and heart. Now Jesus is teaching us to love our neighbours. To love our neighbours, we need to have good EQs. Those with good EQs know how to rejoice when they are happy. They know how to express their anger, sadness, tiredness in the right way. Many people do not know how to express their emotions properly.
When our feelings and minds are not balanced, our hearts are not at peace, and as a result, we are not able to embrace other people. We are so stressed because of my problems, and my low EQ, that I become a thorn to prick anyone who comes close.
Those with well-developed EQs have the ability to cope and overcome hardships and difficulties. Those who understand God through the bible and pray to Him will see the right perspective, and God will give them the wisdom to handle their troubles, and express their feelings in healthier ways.
The key to developing healthy EQ is Hope.
Hope is like a life vest to those who are drowning, depressed and rejected. That hope can be given by a parent, sibling, aunt or uncle, friend, teacher, church member. If you have at least 1 person who will not let go of that string of love and trust for you, you have hope. Even those born to abusive families, and who grew up with no love can be changed. Especially if they receive the love of God, and meet with Jesus, they will find hope!
Let us ask, “Jesus I want to experience Your love!” May we all receive that love today, so that Jesus’ love can wash away all of our hurts and past and give us hope! Without hope in ourselves, we cannot give hope or forgiveness to others.
Emotional healing and development through hope is not too late even for adults. May we be able to find hope in God first.
Our inner self becomes healthier when we work towards eternity. (Ecclesiastes 3:11) When our bodies and hearts go the opposite direction to eternity, that causes instability and conflict deep within ourselves. But when the desire for eternity is matched with our actions and direction of life, that causes our inner self to be at peace and stable.
1 Corinthians 4:1-2 tell us that those who do the work of eternity can satisfy the desire of our hearts that seeks for eternity.
How do we do the work of eternity? By doing God’s work! That is why Jesus said to seek for the kingdom of God and His righteousness and all things will be well.
When we do God’s work and read the bible when we worship, these are all aligned with the desires of your heart for eternity, and that gives health to us. The opposite of eternity: Murder, killing, hatred, sinful desires, this is walking the wrong way and it is harming our inner self.
In the future there is laid up for us the crown of righteousness, so we must run the race in the right direction. Doing God’s work strengthens us, God adds on to us and we don’t get tired.
For the sake of our inner self, do we need healing? Forgiveness? Let us seek it from God. Do we need to forgive? Let us forgive. May we all be revived in 2022. This is the miracle that the Word of God will cause in our life this year.