Friday, 15 June 2012

Guarding ourselves...

As we go further into the topic of managing our bodies, we need to have a quick look at how else we can truly manage ourselves on all levels. In her book ('Life Management for Busy Women' for anyone who missed that!!) Elizabeth George looks at four other things that we need to manage and look after.

The first is based on Proverbs 4:23-27. This passage gives us great advice on what we need to guard – and rather than take away from the words, I’m just going to let the Word speak for itself.

‘Guard your heart above all else,
for it determines the course of your life.
Avoid all perverse talk;
stay away from corrupt speech.
Look straight ahead,
and fix your eyes on what lies before you.
Mark out a straight path for your feet;
stay on the safe path.
Don’t get sidetracked;
keep your feet from following evil.’

You can’t say better than that! It’s amazing what you can find in the Word of God when you actually look for it! We really need to take this and apply it to our lives.

The second area she looked at was that we need to walk in righteousness. Proverbs 4:14-15 tells us that we need to make sure that we avoid evil at all costs. We need to purposely set our feet on the path that God chooses for us and stay away from any other path. Sounds so easy, yet we all know how hard it actually is. But God is always there with us to guide us and keep us on the straight and narrow way.

Avoiding sexual sin is the next area we need to look at. I read a very interesting article recently which really spoke to me. There is a lot of chat about the problem that men face with lust and how easy is can be for them to be tempted by all the pornography that is so readily available on the internet. But we as women face something that is even more addictive. And it comes in the innocent wrapping of a paperback novel.

I love reading – now when I say that I truly mean that I LOVE READING! It is a passion of mine and I especially have a weakness for a good old romance novel. Now there is absolutely nothing wrong with reading a lovely love story and it tugging at your heart strings, but this can be a minefield. You see when I am in a reading frenzy I can read 3 or 4 books in one day! And the more romance novels I read – EVEN IF THEY ARE CHRISTIAN ROMANCES – the more dissatisfied I get with my life, my marriage and my husband. I begin to think ‘Why hasn’t he done that for me?’ or ‘If only he was like such-and-such’ when in fact I love my husband to bits and I know that he is the man God made him. I don’t need him to be anything except what he is – but these romantic novels make me think things that aren’t healthy for my marriage. And that doesn’t even touch on scenes that aren’t necessarily appropriate in books! My eyes were truly opened when I realised that even reading Christian novels made me feel unhappy and dissatisfied. Not a nice feeling. So now I monitor very carefully what I read and read much less!! But it is something we really need to think about.

The last thing that we want to focus on is filling ourselves with light and life. We need to focus on putting good and godly things into our hearts and minds – things that will help us to grow in the Lord and help us to live life to glorify and honour Him alone. 

And when we put all this together with the fact that our bodies don’t belong to us – that they are God’s and bought at a price – the blood of Christ shed for us at Calvary – then we realise how important it is for us to focus on this and get it right.

Elizabeth George says this in her book:

‘It’s sobering to realise these few truths about the physical area of life – that our bodies are  not our own but have been bought at a price, and that our bodies are the temples of the Holy Spirit and can (and should) be used in a way that glorifies God.’

I have been really challenged so I hope you have gotten something out of it too. And remember in everything we do we want to…

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