This week I made a visit to the doctor, getting my physical warrant of fitness. He took my blood pressure with a basic overhaul to discover improvement from my previous year visit. My doctor demanded: “The only thing I’m prescribing for you is another holiday next year in the Cook Islands. Whatever you did there has worked” My initial thought, was jubilation, but I concluded something must change. Holidays are good, but they should not be the rescue package for a person’s health.

There are some practical things we can implement to assist with better health; exercise and diet. One of the churches in the Cook Islands is taking this serious, by running a health program for their people, monitoring their weight and diets. But health is more than our physical condition. The biblical view of health is also viewed in the context of the whole person; body, soul and spirit (3Jn.1;2)

The bible gives plenty of clues to good health: Proverbs 3 ….do not forget my teaching, but keep my commands in your heart, for they will prolong your life many years and bring you peace and prosperity.                      

 The heart is generally used as the seat of our emotions and thoughts. Jesus makes the point; (Mt 15)18 But the things that come out of a person’s mouth come from the heart, and these defile them. 19 For out of the heart come evil thoughts—murder, adultery, sexual immorality, theft, false testimony, slander. Jesus also adds; Your eye is the lamp of your body. When your eyes are healthy, your whole body also is full of light. But when they are unhealthy, your body also is full of darkness.(Lk 11).

Jesus attributes our health to our thought patterns. However, I have a problem with my thoughts; they wander all over the place; some good, some evil. Perhaps the holiday allowed me to unclutter those thoughts and simplify them to basic living. Eat, pray, read, talk, swim and sleep. It seems to me that my Western living is in conflict with the simpler, slower paced way of life of healthy living. We drive fast, work hard, talk fast, play hard; everything in the name of progress. We are so progress driven that we run the risk of missing the gentle whisper of the Holy Spirit. I’ve come to the conclusion that biblical health is governed by our relationship with God and others, and it is much slower with less clutter.