As difficult as this might be to comprehend, the tough times we experience in life serve an important purpose. In the midst of our pain and suffering however, the sovereignty and love of God may elude us. Over a decade ago, my former next door neighbor Aaron, lost his younger sister Carla, due to lung cancer. Carla was only 37 at the time, never smoked a day in her life and tried to live a healthy lifestyle. Aaron on the other hand, smoked heavily, drank a lot of rum, didn’t exercise, and ate fast food every week. Carla passed away three days after his 40th birthday. None of this seemed right or fair to Aaron. After all, he was the party animal doing everything wrong, yet Carla whom he referred to as a goody two-shoes, didn’t make it to age 40. As a result, Aaron was angry with God and had all sorts of questions. How could God allow his sister to suffer? If God was so loving, why would He take away such a good-hearted person? If we’re all destined die, why should anyone develop healthy behaviors? Aaron and I used to get into some deep, heated discussions and it became quite clear that Carla’s death put a wedge between him and his creator.
A few years later, Aaron was getting ready to move out of state. Before he left, we got into yet another interesting discussion. Aaron told me that nobody but God, really understood him. Suddenly, he wasn’t harboring anger anymore and his personal relationship with God had been restored. Naturally, I inquired about his new outlook. Aaron admitted that he never fully trusted God before, but after accepting Jesus Christ as his savior, everything changed. He knew God loved him and recited the following scripture: John 3:16 “For God so loved the world, that he gave his one and only Son that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.” I couldn’t believe what I just heard! The love of Christ healed Aaron’s broken heart and magnified his perception of God’s sovereign power in a very inspiring way. I realized that Aaron’s internal vision of God had significantly improved and this helped him come to terms with the passing of his sister.
Often it’s very difficult for us to understand why certain events take place in our personal life. Furthermore, we simply cannot comprehend the injustice and evil that’s become so prevalent in the world today. No matter how hard we try to figure things out, there are limitations to our human psyche. The Bible says we only know in part. (I Co 13:12) Consequently, whenever we’re going through a personal trial, whatever it may be—we typically don’t see past our pain and frustration. It’s usually only in hindsight that we can make some sense out of our situation and pause to appreciate the almighty power of God’s hand. Sometimes, what we thought was an awful situation, turns out to be a blessing in disguise. It could’ve been God’s loving mercy preparing us for what’s ahead, or protecting us from future harm. Aaron wasn’t religious, but I believe he got a firsthand lesson about the sovereignty of God. He learned that whether we like it or not, God is always in control. In order to trust God however, we may need to broaden our vision of Him. Some individuals might believe that God is sovereign, but not loving. Others may believe that He does not operate out of justice or righteousness. What does the Bible say?
- Isaiah 30:18 “For the Lord is a God of justice.”
- Psalm 33:3 “The Lord loves righteousness and justice; the earth is full of his unfailing love.”
- Romans 5:12 “But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.”
The way we see things can impact the entire course of our life. That’s because our internal vision affects our motivation, behavior and every aspect of our health and well-being—physically, mentally and spiritually. What do we believe about God and how does this influence us? Consider a scenario where an alcoholic man is obsessed with getting his next drink. He has become powerless over his addiction and can’t control his outrageous behavior in the process. Before he can overcome and recover from his addiction, he must acknowledge his need for a higher source of power. He learns the hard way that every dimension of his health needs attention, but nobody can force him to seek God, develop spiritually, or evolve in any way.
Realistically, if any of us want to experience optimal health, then we must proactively choose to set our vision on this mission. This is an important PHS principle that will help us recognize and release any underlying, self-imposed limitations in our mind, body or spirit. Ask yourself a few questions. Do you know how to establish and assess optimal health objectives? Are you motivated internally, externally or not at all? What’s your perspective during a weight loss or fitness program? Do you have a positive or negative mind-set? If you’re not sure about the answers to these questions, take the test on page 192 of The Proactive Health Solution and learn how to progress in your journey toward optimal health. Click here to order your copy.
Romans 8:38 “For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.”
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