Faith, Health

Who is the Health of your Countenance?

Why art thou cast down, O My soul? And why art thou disquieted within me? HOPE IN GOD; for I shall yet praise him, who is the health of my countenance, and my God.

Psalms 43:5

Are you cast down and distressed? Do you have someone to lift you up from your oppression? Does your current situation have you tied up in knots? We are living in uneasy times since Covid arrived around the world. The way we function has changed due to Covid and robberies are now a common thing within our boundaries. It is unnerving to see vandalism, stealing, and destruction of property. We are witnessing this and hearing about it on a weekly basis. Carjackings is on the rise across the Nation. It’s not just the car they are after, but any items one could sell to make quick cash. Cars were broken into in our own neighborhood including ours. The one thing they took was the multifunctional Cup organizer in the middle of the car. Why? Because it held coins. A couple of weeks ago there was a string of vandalisms on one corner strip where they broke in and took the cash registers of businesses down the row. We are living in uncertain times, and this has brought out the negative side of humanity.

If you find people to be more withdrawn it is because of fear.  Fear causes us to think irrationally. Long term exposer to fear can cause one to be anxious most of the time. We are anxious about what will happen next. If you are in this state, turn off the nightly news cast on your devices. If you feel on edge, refocus your mind on God’s word of peace. Remember that there is another spirit at work in the world that does not belong to God. Hear the words of Jesus;

These things I have spoken unto you, that in me ye might have peace. In the world ye shall have tribulation; but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world.

John 16:33

Oppression, affliction, and distress are a part of this world’s tribulations. Humanity outward appearance reveals its nature of inward struggles of the heart. Therefore, we should question who the health of our countenance is. We question it because it will reveal where our hope is. King David was a man who lived in distress. He was hemmed in from all sides including from those to whom he thought he could trust. In Psalms 42 and 43, three times David asked himself why his soul was cast down, that He should hope in God, and praise Him, “who is the health of his countenance, and his God.” Our God being the health of our countenance. Can you imagine that? Look at the beginning of Psalms 43. David asked God to judge him and plead his case against an ungodly nation. He then asked God to deliver him from deceitful and unjust men. This should be our prayer as well. Do you think that David knew who his enemy was? Yes, my friend, David knew full well who the enemy was. He questions himself why he was mourning because of the oppression of the enemy [see verse 2 of Psalms 43].

We can learn to wait upon the Lord God who is our hope and our confidence. Just look at Psalms 62 and read it and know where your confidence comes from. We are not to trust in oppression. . .

Trust not in oppression and become not vain in robbery; if riches increase, set not your heart upon them. God hath spoken once, twice have I heard this, that power belongeth unto God.

Psalms 62:10-11

David is having a conversation with God, and he heard God tell him twice that “power belongs to God.” Wow! Power belongs to God and not man. Think twice about those who are ruling countries today and pray for them. God will judge every man’s work. Not only that, but in Psalms 62, David also exclaims that God is his strength, defense, and refuge. We are to always trust in God and pour our heart out to him. Have you poured out your heart to God? This is refocusing your mind towards God and crying out to him how you feel. Let us be honest about our own fears and anxiety and talk to God about them. Let us sing praises unto Him to whom all power belongs. Let God be always the health of your countenance because greater is he that is in you, than he that is in the world [see 1 John 4:4]. If you are God’s children, He will hear you loud and clear. There is no doubt when you place your trust in God. David had full trust in God. David did not trust in his bow or his sword to save him. He trusted in God to keep him alive. Can we trust God to keep us alive during these times of uncertainty?

I pray that your answer is yes, amen. Like David we are not to trust in any form of oppression but to take it to God in prayer. Ask God to bring the truth and light upon whatever circumstances you may find yourself in. Remember what Peter said in chapter 5: 7-9. To cast all our cares upon him. To be sober and vigilant because your adversary, the devil, like a roaring lion walketh about seeking whom he may devour. Resist steadfast in the faith. Resist fear, anxiety, and oppression in the name of Jesus. Allow his peace to rule your heart and have a clear mind. You are under His care for He cares for you. Always hope in God for He is the health of our countenance, and our God.

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Health

The body for the Lord

Now the body is not for fornication, but for the Lord; and the Lord for the body.

1 Corinthians 6:13

Why is the body for the Lord? Do you have control over your whole body? Those who are older may wish to be young again, and those who are younger want to be older and wiser. It is the catch-22 dilemma or stumbling block that each human must face. No one can escape the process of aging of our physical body. James the brother of Jesus commented that a perfect man can control their whole body [see James 3:1-3]. How many of us are perfect man or women who can control their own body? It is our mind that speaks through our mouth that pollutes our body. Whatever you put into your body is the result of its output. We are taught to take care of our bodies in what we eat and do, so we can get the best results for our physical well-being.  Science has taught us a lot and it is still investigating the theories to bring us the truth of what is happening within our bodies.  We can not ignore the importance of maintaining good health with proper nutrition.  In the Old Testament the Jews were told by God what they should eat to maintain a healthy body. 

Regarding the COVID-19 vaccines they are kosher and do not contain pork products in the form of gelatin. Kosher food refers to foods that meet Jewish dietary standards. There are many people that follow the Jewish dietary standards. Many Jewish doctors in the UK have addressed the rumors about the vaccines. The Jewish News comments that “We live in a time where misinformation is increasingly common. Rumors spread quickly, and social media has played a significant contribution in this.” It is important to be careful what you post on social media as to not become a part of the problem of spreading rumors, but to pray and seek out the truth for the questions you have. We all must have patience when seeking answers to our questions.  Plain common sense is the key to being more aware and reflecting on situations is wise before you make any decisions on what you are going to do. 

I remember in the 1980’s the Firm Believer fitness program by Bobbie Wolgemuth and Judy Moser became popular to meet the needs of those who wanted to live a healthier lifestyle. Many Christians endorsed the program, and some churches opened their doors to having a weekly exercise program.  I also remember watching the Jack LaLanne show and the Richard Simmons show that had exercise routines to help keep our bodies fit for living every day. How many of us ask God in prayer to help us to stop those crash diets, those habits of eating too many sweets, or feelings of tiredness, fatigue, and exhaustion that hamper us from doing what we should be doing to stay physically and spiritually fit. Do we really care about what we eat and what type of physical activity we do every day? No matter what age you are, taking care of your own body is a daily routine. Disease is growing at a rapid rate according to the world health organization and following that is the global pandemics. As Christians we should be aware and concerned about how to keep our body as belonging to the Lord and not for self-indulgence.

How can we present our bodies to the Lord as a living sacrifice as Paul tells us in Romans 12:1. Let us not forget that the apostle Paul stated that our “body is not for fornication but for the Lord, [1 Corinthians 6:13]?  Paul also asked the question in 1 Corinthians 6:15, “know ye not that your bodies are the members of Christ?” How does this apply to our physical body? It is not only our mind, will, and emotion that belongs to the Lord, but our physical body as well. That is why Jesus went about healing everyone who was sick or had disease. Salvation and healing are found in the cross of Christ because he bought us with a price. The body is to be holy because it is washed and justified through the blood of Christ.

For ye are bought with a price; therefore, glorify God in your body and in your spirit, which are God’s

1 Corinthians 6:20

Our body is not to be used in selfish indulgences such as overeating or sexual immorality. Paul states to flee fornication because it is a sin against your own body [see 1 Corinthians 6:18]. Run away from sexual immorality and keep your own body pure and holy. Our body is part of the sanctification process through Christ and now it belongs to the Lord. That is why Paul exclaims that “all things are lawful unto me, but all things are not expedient; all things are lawful for me, but I will not be brought under the power of any [1 Corinthians 6:12]. We should not be brought under the power of anything that would degrade our body towards death rather than towards life. We are not to be conformed to the worldly ways of practicing selfish indulgences but to cease from them and be transformed by the renewing of our minds to what is good for us physically and spiritually. God is concerned for our whole being and not just a part of it.

If thy whole body, therefore, be full of light, having no part dark, the whole shall be full of light, as when the bright shining of a lamp doth give thee light.

Luke 11:36

The whole body is to be full of light having no part of darkness within it. Pray and ask the Lord to help heal your body and to get your appetites, desires, or whims under control. Ask to receive a new desire that is righteous and holy in the image of Christ. Ask to take steps in building up your own physical body by changing your diet to one that will support a healthy immune system. Ask the Lord to help you maintain your health through exercising on a weekly basis. Take practical steps such as washing hands, disinfecting counter tops, and wearing a mask when conditions are worsening in a specific area that you live in or are visiting. Ask the Lord to guide you and your doctor to consider natural alternatives to building and maintaining a healthy body. Ask the Lord to give understanding within those around you to support you in maintaining that healthy body. Remember He cares for you and your body, for you are presenting your body to the Lord as a living sacrifice [see Romans 12:1].

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