Getting It Right

“Your body is the temple . . so honor God with your body.” 1 Corinthians 6:19-20 NLT

“A healthier lifestyle of living more wisely best honors God.”

My thoughts today are about “getting it right.”

Life is so much simpler when you get it right. Just as you and I do, ordinary people so often get it wrong, and that’s a problem. Life isn’t really as complicated as you make it. God established an order in everything He created, and that order includes your body. Even casual thought about the body leads you to David’s conclusion: “I will praise You for I am fearfully and wonderfully made.” Psalm 139:13 NKJV/ See13-17 NLT.

How wonderfully constructed would not itself make your body a temple. That can be said when the Spirit of God dwells within you. “Don’t you know your body is the temple of the Holy Spirit, who lives in you and was given to you by God? You do not belong to yourself. You are bought with a price, so you must honor God with your body.” 1 Corinthians 6:19-20 NLT.

What would it look like if you sought to honor God with your body? For any one of us, it would certainly mean a healthier lifestyle of living more wisely: eating properly, exercising moderately, working diligently, resting adequately, relating honestly, living simply, and occupying time profitably. Many will try to tell you what they think that means for you, but what do you think that means? What first step could you take today to honor God with your body?

The Bible warns, “If anyone defiles God’s temple . . (for) God’s temple is sacred, and you are that temple.” 1 Corinthians 3:17 NKJV/NIV. Contrast the severity with which Jesus had to cleanse the actual Temple in Jerusalem and those who defiled its sanctity and purpose. (See Matthew 21:12-14 NIV),  with the way the Holy Spirit, who dwells in you, desires to graciously cleanse your physical temple every day. He does so in love, not judgment. See 1 John 1:8-9.

Clearly, what you put into your life has much to do with what comes out of it. That’s the place where getting it right is important. What you see, hear, read, think, and entertain yourself with greatly impacts what you say and do, and who you become. Jesus said that if you put anger or hate in, murder comes out; if you put lust in, sexual impurity results. See Matthew 5:21-22.

Living in a healthy manner obviously involves very practical, external things like proper exercise, food, and habits, but honoring God involves less obvious and more internal things such as your thought life (Philippians 4:8-9/Eph 4:22-29), your attitudes and relationships (Ephesians 4:30-32), and your emotions, words, and amusements. A successful life comes from getting it right.

The Bible concludes, “Spend the rest of your life here on earth in reverence for Him. For you know what was paid to set you free from the worthless manner of life . . the costly sacrifice of Christ!” 1 Peter 1:17-18 TEV. There is some practical measure of regard for the gift of your physical life that obliges you to reverence God by how you live, and how you treat the gift of life you have been given.

Almost fifty years later, I remember a prayer of a college professor before class, Lord, help me to make of the timber of my life a temple, not a tavern.” His simple prayer became for me a worthy goal.

My prayer for you is: protect the sacredness of the temple of your heart where God dwells.