Sent:  May 15, 2002

Subject:  God’s Vitamins

Good Morning Ethan & Emily:

As I begin this early morning devotion I have finished breakfast and have been a “good boy” by taking my vitamins!  And, as I have read thru the Bible I have found many passages that indicate that God has His own brand of “vitamins” as well as advice for physical health and spiritual conditioning.  Here are just a few:

1.  For strength…

 a.  Have your heart “fully committed” to Him.  “The eyes of the Lord search the whole earth in order to strengthen those whose hearts are fully committed to Him” (2 Chron. 16:9).  Even though our health may fail, we can still experience strength for each day.  “My health may fail, and my spirit may grow weak, but God remains the strength of my heart; He is mine forever” (Prov. 15:30).

 b.  Experience the “joy of the Lord.” “The joy of the Lord is your strength” (Nehemiah 8:10).  You can be instrumental in giving health to others as you minister cheerfully to them:  “A cheerful look brings joy to the heart; good news makes for good health” (Prov. 15:30).

2.  For healing…

 a.  Call for the elders of the church to pray over you.  “Are any among you sick?  They should call for the elders of the church and have them pray over them, anointing them with oil in the name of the Lord.  And their prayer offered in faith will heal the sick, and the Lord will make them well” (James 5:14-15).

NOTE:  There seems to be something especially effective about the laying on of hands and objects, as indicated in the following passages:  “They (the disciples) will be able to place their hands on the sick and heal them” (Mark 16:18).  God also gave Paul a special power, but there is no indication from Scripture that this is applicable today:  “God gave Paul the power to do unusual miracles, so that even when handkerchiefs or cloths that had touched his skin were placed on sick people, they were healed of their diseases…” (Acts 19:11-12).

 b.  Exercise your faith.  “Jesus turned around and said to her, ‘Daughter, be encouraged!  Your faith has made you well.’  And the woman was healed at that moment” (Matt 9:22).  There are many instances of “healing faith.”  Another can be found in Luke:  “And Jesus said to the man, ‘Stand up and go.  Your faith has made you well” (Luke 17:19).  Also in Mark:  “And He said to her, ‘Daughter, your faith has made you well.  Go in peace.  You have been healed” (Mark 5:34).

3.  For a good night’s sleep…

Work hard.  “People who work hard sleep well, whether they eat little of much.  But the rich are always worrying and seldom get a good night’s sleep” (Ecclesiastes 5:12).

4.  For health…

 a.  Pray.  “O Lord my God, I cried out to you for help, and You restored my health” (Ps. 30:2).

 b.  Grow spiritually.  “Beloved, I pray that you may prosper in all things and be in health, just as your soul prospers” (3John 1:2).

 c.  Let God’s Word “penetrate deep within your heart.”  “Don’t lose sight of my words.  Let them penetrate deep within your heart, for they bring life and radiant health to anyone who discovers their meaning” (Prov. 4:21-22).

 d.  Avoid anger and other sin.  “Because of your anger, my whole body is sick; my health is broken because of my sins” (Ps. 38:3).

 e.  Have an attitude of “rejoicing” for all that God has done.  “When you see these things (prophecy being fulfilled), your heart will rejoice.  Vigorous health will be yours!  Everyone will see the good hand of the Lord on His people…and His anger against His enemies” (Isaiah 66:14).

 f.  Keep your conversation “sweet,” “gentle,” and let it reflect God’s wisdom.  “Pleasant words are like a honeycomb, Sweetness to the soul and health to the bones” (Prov. 16:24 KJV).  “Gentle words being life and health; a deceitful tongue crushes the spirit” (Prov. 15:4).  “There is one who speaks like the piercings of a sword, But the tongue of the wise promotes health” (Prov. 12:18 KVJ).

6.  For restoration of health…

 a.  Apply God’s Word to your life.  “I will never forget your (the Lord’s) commandments for You have used them to restore my joy and health” (Ps. 119:93-94).

 b.  Understand the purpose of God’s discipline.  God often disciplines us to bring us back into a right relationship with Him.  “Lord, your discipline is good, for it leads to life and health.  You have restored my health and have allowed me to live” (Isaiah 38:16).

 c.  Fear the Lord and turn from evil.  “Don’t be impressed with your own wisdom.  Instead, fear the Lord and turn your back on evil.  Then you will gain renewed health and vitality” (Prov. 3:7-8).

7.  For long life…

 a.  Have a relaxed attitude and avoid jealousy.  “A relaxed attitude lengthens life; jealousy rots it away” (Prov. 14:30).

 b.  Memorize God’s Word.  “Store my (God’s) commands in your heart, for they will give you a long and satisfying life” (Prov. 3:1-2).

Well, quite a list, isn’t it?  But just as our bottle vitamins cannot guarantee good health to us, let us remember that although the application of the principles outlined above are effective…God remains the ultimate giver and taker of health.  When He takes it, He uses it for His glory and to fulfill His will.

Paul was afflicted with a physical ailment all his life which no doubt, was used by God to keep him focused on serving the Lord…and not other pursuits of which he was imminently capable.  As Paul himself expressed this is terms of pride and service:  “I don’t want anyone to think more highly of me than what they can actually see in my life and my message…But to keep me from getting puffed up, I was given a thorn in my flesh, a messenger from Satan to torment me and keep me from getting proud.  Three different times I begged (prayed) the Lord to take it away.  Each time He said, ‘My gracious favor is all you need.  My power works best in your weakness.’  So now I am glad to boast about my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may work through me” (2 Corinthians 12:6-10).

God is not a health “nut,” but He is definitely concerned about our physical well being, and He does give us principles and guidelines that…when applied…can affect how we feel and what we are able to do.  .

So…take out your Bible and look for the health “tips.”  Then read the “recommended usages” and take “God’s Vitamins” daily!

Have a healthy day…