Body, mind, soul, and why I now disagree with what I used to think

This is something I wrote years ago when I thought I knew what I was talking about but I really didn’t:

We are banks.

Sometimes people invest in us, sometimes they withdraw from us, sometimes they borrow from us, and occasionally they rob from us.  Sometimes we deposit to ourselves.  And sometimes we withdraw funds to give to others or simply to squander.  Sometimes we borrow from others, sometimes we withdraw from them, and occasionally we even rob from them.  Life is a constant give and take, a perpetual balancing act between how much we devote to our mind, our body, and our soul.

When you see an emptiness in one of more of your vaults, where can you go for help?

Resources for the Body

  • 64 ounces of water per day
  • 7-9 hours of sleep every night
  • Vitamins, herbs, and supplements
  • Balance of the food groups
  • Pure, natural foods
  • Daily exercise
  • Teeth care (brushing, flossing, and fluoride)
  • Comfortable clothes (some fabrics are very soothing, others chafe skin)
  • Toxicity programs (under guidance of a health practitioner)
  • Regular dental and doctor exams
  • Massages
  • Acupuncture

Resources for the Mind

  • Friends (especially conversation)
  • Family get-togethers
  • Christian fellowship
  • Word games
  • Journaling
  • Vocabulary building problems (for self-expression)
  • Inspirational books, movies, and music (what inspires you)
  • Variety in life
  • Positive life changes

Resources for the Soul

  • Ongoing relationship with Jesus Christ through the Word, prayer, and devotional time at a personal, small group, and church level

When I wrote this, I thought I was in the business of helping people.  In reality, I hadn’t even made a commitment in my own life to following Jesus Christ.  I thought I was saying the right words.  I thought I was a sage.  But really, I had painfully little clue what I was writing about.  (By the way, I did not even go to a small group at this time and I would barely go to Sunday morning church.  I don’t even know if I had even begun reading the Bible–heart reading–at the time I wrote this or not!)

Thank God, He revealed Himself to me, and I now know what a lot of nice-sounding nonsense most of what I wrote was.  The only thing I had right, I had right in the feeblest sense: that is, the ongoing relationship with Jesus Christ.

But I knew so little, because I linked that with devotions and prayers and church as if the actual relationship was only one link in the chain.

I want to rewrite.

We are not banks.

This life isn’t about stockpiling “good coins” and keeping circumstances and people from robbing us of those coins.  It isn’t about how many deposits people make, or how many withdrawals we make, or how many times we’re robbed.  Life is not a constant give and take, and there is no balancing act involved between our mind, our body, and our soul.  That’s a load of junk.

Our life is about our soul.  Period.

I don’t “balance” my soul with my mind or my body.  And I don’t “give” and “take” from one to give to the other.  That’s total nonsense.  If I even try to do that, what I will be doing is starving my soul.

The purpose of my body is to hold my soul.  The purpose of my mind is to determine where my soul will go–and that opportunity is only possible because of a gift, the gift of Jesus Christ.  Without Him, the only thing I can ever give anyone is sin and the only thing I can ever take to “add” to my “coins” is sin.

The things we do for our body and mind are ultimately only meaningful for the consequence they have on our soul.

There have been probably thousands of books written on ways to take care of your mind and your body or how to have warm and fuzzy feelings for your soul, but all of these are utterly, totally pointless if they do not change where your soul is going.

The only–the only–Person who can change where your soul is going is Jesus Christ.

The first thing you or I will care about on the day we die and wake up to eternity is whether or not Jesus claims us as His own.  The next thing we will care about will either be, if Jesus does not claim us, that we are going to Hell, or, if Jesus does claim us, how we used our time on earth to bring as many souls to Him as possible.

In eternity, we will either be given a new body or not based on the state of our soul.  And in eternity, our mind will be unable to make any further decisions about whether we spend our time in Heaven or in Hell.  If we are in Hell, we won’t go to Heaven if we change our mind about Jesus–and of course we will change our mind, because we will see Him as Lord wherever we are.  But it will be too late because, during the time we were in our body, we made up our minds about where we would go.  And if our choice was Hell, we are stuck.

I now understand there is no exercise, no diet, no homeopathy, no medicine, no friendship, no family member, no social function, no community, no environment, no act of citizenship, no volunteerism, no politics, and no “good deed” that will save us . . . and even if these things help us feel better, in the end, it will be absolutely purposeless in our eternity.

Only one can save us, and He is Jesus Christ.

There is salvation in no one else! God has given no other name under heaven by which we must be saved. (Acts 4:12, NLT)

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