Even Jesus needed some help. Twice we see where the Lord sent angels to Jesus to help Him during a difficult time. At the beginning of His ministry and at the end of His ministry. Before Jesus really entered into His public ministry, the Spirit led Him out into the desert to be tempted by the devil. He had been fasting for forty days. I can only imagine how tired He was physically, but He resisted the devil in every way. Afterwards the Scripture says that angels attended Him. Also, as Christ was in the Garden of Gethsemane, He was struggling mentally, emotionally, but also physically. He was sweating drops of blood. This was not a spiritual condition. It was physical. The weight of His situation and the burden He was carrying in prayer for the entire human race was too much for His body and His blood vessels burst allowing blood to escape through the sweat glands. And angels came and attended Him.
As Christians, sometimes we put such a great emphasis on our spiritual walk, but we don’t always consider how our physical body effects our spirit. When we speak of disciplines, we tend to focus on spiritual disciplines – reading the Bible, praying, meditation on the Word, worship, both private and corporate. But the Scripture reminds us that not only do our souls need to be sanctified holy, so do our bodies (1 Thessalonians 5:23). But sanctification is a spiritual act and process. How can our physical bodies go through a spiritual process?
The fact that we might not fully embrace the need for our physical bodies to be sanctified is a good indication why temptations win too many battles. Our bodies desire the things of the flesh. Our body is the vehicle for pleasures of the flesh. At the same time, our bodies are the Temple of the Holy Spirit (1 Corinthians 6:19). It is just a fact that our physical body has an impact on our spiritual walk. It must then be sanctified.
There are days when I come into the office and begin to work, wanting and needing to study in preparation of speaking and teaching and my spirit is willing, but my body is weak. I am just tired. I didn’t get enough sleep the night before. Usually, the night before, like most nights, I am up too late. I am usually studying at night also and again, my spirit is willing, buts my body is weak. I can’t keep my eyes open. I begin to read and I doze off. I have an unbelievable God-given gift to continue typing even when I am asleep. I will wake myself up suddenly, usually from the sound of my own snoring and I will read what I have typed. I went to the store and got my horse a drink from the fountain. My hair burned on the stove with the macaroni. I usually have great grammar. Capital letters are in place, subject, verb, and object. IT JUST DOESN’T MAKE ANY SENSE! I have turned in some papers for my master’s classes in Christian counseling that I am sure have caused the professors to wonder if I needed some counseling. Not too long ago, I just got a note from a professor about a paper that said, “unintelligible here.” That says it all. Fatigue in my body affects my mind, my attention, my focus, and thus…my spiritual walk.
There are many things that we can do better to help our fatigue. We can go to sleep instead of staying up watching re-runs on Hulu. We can eat right. There are many foods that cause fatigue. There are many foods that can be addictive. The lack of exercise can cause fatigue. Getting sick can cause it. All of these are things that we can do something about. I know this blog is not a super-spiritual giant of a statement, but nevertheless, it is important. I am not promoting any kind of exercise program and this is not an endorsement of any kind of diet. Sometimes, fatigue is not because of anything we are doing badly, it is the result of life and ministry. Just go and ask the mother of a 6-week-old baby how tired she is ministering to her little miracle. There are many things we do for the Lord that are going to wipe us out even if we are eating right, getting enough sleep, and taking time to exercise. But even in these times, there is help.
Angels attended to Jesus. Also, angels brought Elijah hot meals to help him find the energy for his journey (1 Kings 19:5). So, let’s do all we can to get enough sleep, to eat right, and get some exercise. But here is something else that we can do. When we are tired, we can ask the Lord for help. We can ask for energy to get things done. We can ask the Lord to send some angels to give us strength to get out of bed when we are tired and depressed. We can ask for strength to go and exercise. It may seem a little silly, but the Lord who gives strength to our spirit will also give strength to our bodies when we are just flat worn out.
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