Then they were on the road. They preached with joyful urgency that life can be radically different; right and left they sent the demons packing; they brought wellness to the sick, anointing their bodies, healing their spirits. Matthew 6:12-13 The Message
Wellness can be described as, ‘the state of being in good health, especially as an actively pursued goal.’(lexico.com)
It is a big topic in today’s world and a big industry. A report in November 2020 stated that ‘the global health and wellness industry is expected to hit $6,543.4 million by 2026 and grow at a CAGR of 4.8% from 2019 to 2026.’ The research study delivered thorough insights on the existing circumstances and future scope of the market. Global Health and Wellness Industry
Current research is increasingly interested in how various lifestyle factors, which are traditionally connected to physical health might also relate to psychological well-being and mental health.
So what does the Bible tell us about health and wellness? While it clearly shows that people get sick, acquire diseases and physical conditions, it also clearly shows in both the Old and New Testament that God is able to heal people in mind and body and spirit. We continue to hear stories in our day of how people have experienced God’s healing in their lives.
It is important to pay attention to physical factors such as diet, sleep, exercise, and rest and relaxation, in order to maintain our health and wellness. From a spiritual perspective time spent in reading the Bible, prayer, worship, stillness, meditation and reflection, all lead to an increased sense of wellness and well-being. This is described well, by the writer of Proverbs,
Fill your thoughts with my words
until they penetrate deep into your spirit.
Then, as you unwrap my words,
they will impart true life and radiant health
into the very core of your being.
So above all, guard the affections of your heart,
for they affect all that you are.
Pay attention to the welfare of your innermost being,
for from there flows the wellspring of life.
Proverbs 4:21-23 The Passion Translation
As we journey through life, there are times when we find ourselves experiencing ill health. These times often take us by surprise and are unwelcome. When my health suddenly collapsed a few years ago I found myself in an ambulance, with sound and lighting effects, hurtling towards a major teaching hospital. I had planned to have coffee with a friend that day…it was not what I expected!
However looking back over the preceding months, at a later date, I noticed the way God had prepared me and equipped me for that season of ill health.
One of these ways was being part of a spiritual formation group. One week I chose, as a spiritual practice, to pick a verse and sit with it for 10 minutes a day. The verse I chose was Hebrew 13:6 NIV, The Lord is my helper; I will not be afraid. The idea was to do this for a week and then to share with the group, at the next meeting, how we got on with what we had chosen.
At the end of the week I was on a roll with this verse and continued with it for some weeks. This verse did not impart radiant health to my body! But it certainly did to my mind and spirit and it sustained me through my time in hospital. I also had a strong sense of peace through all the tests and procedures and uncertainties of the situation I found myself in.
In the following months after I left hospital, the experience of being there and discovering that I had an incurable heart disease, certainly focussed my attention on wellness and on developing strategies to increase my level of physical wellness. Furthermore, it provided an opportunity for increased stillness, silence and meditation. This became a springboard to a totally new season of my life.
- Read the verses from Proverbs through a few times and see which word or phrase or verse resonates with you today. Ponder on your word or phrase for a few minutes.
- Consider your current level of wellness. Do you need to make any adjustments to enhance your wellness?
You may find these meditations helpful as you think about health and wellness.