Journey to Wellness

Journey to Wellness

At the start of a journey, it is helpful to have a plan. Do you know where you want to go? Are you going on the journey alone, or will friends be traveling with you? Will this be a short trip or an extended stay? Will you be traveling by boat…by train…by airplane…by automobile? Is your destination in a warm climate or a cold climate? You can easily skip all of the details, jump in your car, and take off for destinations unknown. However,  we all know that could end up alright, but it may very well lead to disaster. All of our lives we have heard the adage: “Proper planning prevents poor performance.” That is true when planning any journey, especially your journey to wellness.

            Before starting your journey to wellness, you must first determine what wellness means to you. Dictionary.com defines wellness as:

  1. the quality or state of being healthy in body and mind, especially as the result of deliberate effort.
  2. an approach to healthcare that emphasizes preventing illness and prolonging life, as opposed to emphasizing treating diseases.

 

The definitions that they provide are a good start, but as a christian, I feel there are some important details left out. If I was given an opportunity to re-write or revise the definition of wellness for this website, I would define wellness as:

  1. the quality or state of being healthy in body, mind, and spirit, especially as the result of deliberate effort and obedience to the word of God.
  2. an approach to a spiritual life that emphasizes preventing illness and obtaining eternal life, as opposed to emphasizing treating diseases or simply doing our own thing.

 

You see, just like other areas of our lives, we often leave Christ out of our journey to wellness.  I know you’re wondering what Jesus has to do with our wellness. Does Jesuscare if you get 10,000 steps daily on your fitness tracker? Will He ask you about eating that whole pizza or that extra piece of cake when you stand before Him on judgement day? I certainly hope not, because I have had my fair share of extra slices of pizza and cake! But, we should certainly remember that Romans 12:1 says:

present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service.”

 

When we look at this scripture, we often just concentrate on one part of the sacrifice…turning away from our worldly ways and taking on more holy ways. But I challenge you to expand your thinking and to consider that a living sacrifice also includes taking care of the body that God has entrusted you with. Jesus sent us to serve others, but how can you serve if you are not in good physical condition?

            Now that you have considered this approach to wellness, don’t stop there. Roman 12:2 encourages us to:

let God transform you into a new person by changing the way you think. Then you will learn to know God’s will for you, which is good and pleasing and perfect. (New Living Translation)

                                                                                  

Not only should we “study to show ourselves approved unto God”, we should sit up, push up, run, jump walk, breathe, and exercise to show ourselves approved unto God! Say it loud: “I’m on a journey to wellness and I’m proud!” Well, that last part isn’t in the bible, but we should be excited about our journey to wellness.

            Many people bypass the journey to wellness because they think it will be too hard. It may seem difficult at first, but the rewards are great and wonderful! The good news is that you don’t have to go on that journey alone! Jesus will be with you every step of the way!

Sunny Days Ahead, Protect Your Skin!

Sunny Days Ahead, Protect Your Skin!

It is almost Spring! We will all joyfully pack away our winter coats and snow boots and unpack our short sleeve shirts and flip flops. We will plan ball games, gardens, yard projects, vacations, hiking, and other exciting outdoor activities. In many states, we even have Daylight Savings Time so that we can take advantage of every minute of daylight! Fresh air and sunshine are definitely on the list of “must-haves”, but whatever you plan to do for some fun in the sun, be sure to protect your skin.

Did you know that skin cancer is the most common type of cancer in the United States?

  • Over the past three decades, more people have had skin cancer than all other cancers combined.
  • One in five Americans will develop skin cancer in the course of a lifetime.
  • An estimated 90 percent of skin aging is caused by the sun.
  • Sun damage is cumulative. Only about 23 percent of lifetime exposure occurs by age 18.
  • More people develop skin cancer because of tanning than develop lung cancer because of smoking.
  • About 90 percent of non-melanoma skin cancers and about 86 percent of melanomas are associated with exposure to UV radiation from the sun. UV radiation can also come from tanning booths or sunlamps.

www.skincancer.org/skin-cancer-information/ski-cancer-facts

These statistics are startling, but let’s adopt good habits to protect ourselves and the people that we love. Sun protection is essential to skin cancer prevention, and here are a few tips:

  • Use sunscreen. Experts recommend using a sunscreen with an SPF of 15 or higher. But, before you go out and buy the first sunscreen you see with the highest SPF, do you research. All sunscreens are not created equal!
  • Limit your time in the sun. Look for shade. It gives a whole new meaning to the term “run for cover”!
  • Wear a broad-brimmed hat and UV blocking sunglasses. What a great excuse to get those cool new sunglasses!
  • Avoid tanning and UV tanning beds. Think of the money you can save each summer!
  • Examine your skin, head to toe every month. We should all love the skin we are in!

The good news is that skin cancer can be prevented, and it can almost always be cured when it’s found and treated early.