Steph's Steps

 I have been intrigued lately with the connection between mind (or spirit), body and soul. I had some incidents happen to me personally that cemented the idea that the three “parts” of us actually all work in tandem. DUH! (As my friend Doc Litton so delicately commented when I talked to him about this.) I’m kind of dense though...It took several times till I was like, “Wait?! What?...”

    What happens to one affects the others. An easy way to look at it is this:what we do to our bodies physically-what we eat, how much sleep we get, if we are overweight-directly affects the other aspects of our lives. No, I am not saying that what I eat will affect my salvation! But look what the Bible say about gluttony. What about our bodies being a temple that we should take care of? So maybe there is a spiritual or soul connection to how we treat our bodies? Also, if we are fatigued because of not getting enough nutrients, it can affect our minds and even our attitudes.

    A few months ago, I was dealing with a lot of bitterness and anger. I had never held on to grudges or hate toward people but this time I was having trouble letting go. As our friend Doc Litton prayed for me, he felt that it was time to let it go and give it all to God. I had felt the same earlier that week but this was a confirmation I needed. I was ready to forgive but it was so hard! As he prayed for me to be released, he asked if I had any physical symptoms that had just come up lately. I said yes, that I had pain around my heart but on the left side. As he prayed for my deliverance from bitterness, the pain left! The pain was simply a physical manifestation of a spiritual or soul problem. Not only did the physical pain leave but from that day forward, I was also delivered from the anger and bitterness that I had developing roots in me! God is good! This really opened my mind to the obvious connection between our bodies, souls and spirits or minds.

    I was also, at the same time, introduced to a ministry called, “Be in Health” with Henry Wright. His ministry of healing is based on identifying root spiritual problems that display as physical diseases and/or symptoms.  He wrote a very informational book called, “A More Excellent Way” that details what he believes is one facet of healing, identifying spiritual roots. This information along with my personal experience really opened my eyes to a new revelation. This all may sound strange to you but I ask you to just think and pray about it and ask God if this is something that could benefit you. I am not wanting to mess with anyone’s theology! Just wanting to pass on some great information that has changed the way I look at and live my life!

    One of my early mentors, Thetus Tenney, wrote a booklet called, “Life is a Three-legged Stool” that really helped a lot of people. It was basic common sense but something we all needed to be reminded of occasionally. I don’t remember the exact context but the premise was that we are like a three-legged stool. We must be stable on all legs or we may come crashing down! It seems like many of us will spend the proper amount of time stabilizing and strengthening one or two areas of life but then the other areas become weak and hazardous. It is very important that we identify our strengths and weaknesses in all three areas-mind, body, soul-and work daily to make sure every “leg” or part of our lives stay strong. What areas are you strong in today? Have you been eating right and exercising? How is your prayer life? Have you fasted lately? What are your thought processes? Have you been in the Word so your mind can be transformed?

    Believe me, these are all questions I have been asking myself! Because life is so stressful and busy, I find it easier to focus on one area at a time. But then the other areas of my life can become anemic and unfocused. While we were pastoring in Shreveport, I was so consumed with the mind and soul parts of my life that my body was put way back on a top shelf, hidden behind staff meetings and outreach events. I didn’t take time to exercise or eat right. I was too busy working for the Lord! I was unbalanced. Yes, I am sure I racked up some points in my heavenly crown for all I was doing to help others and further the gospel but at the rate I was going, I was gonna be wearing that crown a lot sooner that God intended. So I know what it is like to be off-kilter, to know to do right and different but just not being able to make that happen. I can say that right now in my life I have tilted over to taking care of ME and MINE as the most important task. I am not ministering to others on a daily basis as I have done for years. I am taking some time to get myself and my family “caught up” after five years of my focus being elsewhere. I am so thankful for this time! I feel like me personally and my family as a whole are being restored and rejuvenated on a daily basis and it has been needed for a long time. Hopefully, this will level the stool of life and stabilize things a little bit.

    I don’t know where you are today. If you are in ministry, I can pretty much guess which way your stool is leaning! I encourage you today to take stock of your life. Where are you? Are you reaching your goals? As Switchfoot says, “This is your life. Are you who you wanna be? Is it how it’s supposed to be?” Only you know what you want out of life! My prayer today is that God will make plain the areas we all need to work on. He can make it verryyy obvious believe me! God bless you on your journey!

Disclaimer:I will be writing on this three prong connection in the next few weeks. I am studying it out for myself and I’m sure I will learn a lot of new information in the days to come. I am not here to argue with anyone but I welcome your thoughts. I am just wanting to share what has been revealed to me lately to hopefully help someone else!