What’s one thing you love about your body? What’s one thing that frustrates you about your body? MAIN IDEA – Our bodies are a Temple Being made in the image and likeness of God, we are 3-part beings: spirit, soul, body. God designed these 3 arenas to work together. It’s easy to think our bodies don’t matter because they ‘aren’t spiritual’, that God is only concerned about our soul. This is an idea that flourished in the 1st century AD called ‘Gnosticism’. Gnostics believed the material world was basically evil and the task of humanity was to escape it, reaching the pinnacle of becoming a disembodied soul after death. This isn’t God’s plan. God became flesh and blood; Jesus rose from the dead in a physical body, revealing what we ourselves will one day experience. Your body is a beautiful gift God has entrusted you with. From scripture we learn we’re called to steward and care for our body as a Temple where God’s Spirit dwells. We do this by creating rhythms of exercise, rest, observing a healthy diet, and other practices. DISCUSS: Do you think there’s a connection between your physical health and your spiritual health and well-being? How so? How does thinking about your body as a ‘Temple’ affect your attitude towards your body and physical health? EXPLORE THE WORD: Read the following verses. What can we learn from Scripture about the importance of our body and it’s health and well-being? What about the connection between the condition of our soul and health of our body? Proverbs 3:6-8 Proverbs 14:30 Proverbs 17:22 Romans 12:1-2 1 Corinthians 6:19-20 1 Thessalonians 5:23 3 John 2 INTERESTING QUOTES: “We were made to feast. Not in order to become full, but because we are full. We are to celebrate that fullness by feasting. Feasting to fill the emptiness is not feasting; it is coping. After the Fall of humanity, our relationship with food was broken. One of our greatest temptations is to rehearse the Fall again and again through food. We eat to try to fill our emptiness.” – Justin Whitmel Earley, The Common Rule “The temptation in our culture is to always look at our bodies as ornaments: how do I get people to notice me, to appreciate me? But from a biblical perspective, my body is to be an instrument to serve God; it’s not to draw attention to me; it’s to draw attention to God. ‘Lord I want to take this body and use it to draw others to You, not to myself.’ I want to take care of myself because if I minister all day, I need a body that can do that.” - Dr. Gary Thomas “The one thing greater than healing is health.” – Bill Johnson PRACTICE: Daily - Go on a walk, a hike, bike ride or other physical activity. Go slowly and take time to recognize the presence of God around you. Daily - Take an hour to break from technology, power down your phone or use it sparingly by staying off social media and streaming services. Weekly – Set aside a day or time each week for fasting. Fasting is intentionally opening yourself to God by letting go of something in your life that controls you. Your emptiness is a reminder to turn to Jesus who alone can satisfy you. Write down your worries, then throw them away. When things get hectic, slow down and ask God to refresh your peace. REFLECTION QUESTIONS to keep you growing How will I be intentional with my physical health? How does my diet reflect care and self-control? How am I practicing self-control today? How am I growing in purity? How will I use my strength to help someone else today?