FOUNDATIONS OF GOOD HEALTH! Created by dr.Ava Joubert
the foundations for good health: service, purpose, forgiveness, laughter
If you're reading this, you probably already have a good idea of what it feels like to be healthy, and you're either wanting to regain that sense of wellbeing or maintain it. Health, (as describe in the thesaurus references "strength", "vigor", "fitness") includes more than just our physical condition, our weight, our blood counts, or how many miles we get in every day. Health and wellbeing represents ALL that we are made of, our thoughts, our feelings, our brain, our relationships, our sexuality, our heart, our heart's desires, our vision (literally and figuratively),...AND everything and everyone we're connected with.
There is no one road or one recipe to good health. However, there are countless secular and scriptural references to the "feel good" effect of giving, notably, giving of yourself, or serving. Your own burdens are minimized as your mind, body, and emotions are lifted, your sleep becomes more restorative. Healing is able to take place because of the research-proven positive chemical responses that take place in the body and mind when we serve others. Research indicates that those who consistently service others experience less depression, greater calm, fewer pains and better health, and gives us a sense of purpose and satisfaction. "A 2012 study in the Journal Health Psychology found that participants who volunteered with some regularity lived longer, but only if their intentions where truly altruistic." Harvard Women's Health Watch, S. Watson.
Service is not service when we boast about it, for then it becomes self-serving, convenient or expedient. And while serving others may not be convenient or expedient for us, somehow, before your realize it, you're ministered to; even when you thought you were the one doing the ministering.
As you begin to serve others, and truly serve from that selfless part of you and expecting nothing in return, you began to notice your sleep improves, you appreciate and develop deeper and more meaningful relationships, make better choices and become less concerned with all the trivia that tend to weigh us down. Life takes on real substance as you began to live a life of love unconditionally through service.
"Without a vision, the people perish". Proverbs 29:18
Many undoubtedly recognize that familiar phrase. There is a phrase, Chazown, (a Hebrew word) which embodies "vision" which has made a tremendous difference in my life. It was first brought to my attention while doing a bible study plan with a friend. We were asked first to write our core values: what values shape your life...that you would be willing to die for? Next, without going into your humility bag, what are you good at, what are you known for? And thirdly, what past experiences, good or bad, have you had that might benefit others? When you figure these out and truly take the time to see where these three areas of your life intersect, you will have discovered your CHAZOWN, or your purpose, or a vision for your life (ww.chazown,com). Having PURPOSE keeps you focused and disciplined in the day to day life choices we have to make, including what we put into our bodies and our minds. The desire to execute and realize your God given purpose will generally motivate and move you towards those actions you need to take that will keep you fit physically, mentally, and spiritually for the task at hand.
"There is nothing done or said that can't be forgiven." Mar"...except to lie about the Holy Spirit"
Unforgiveness is like a cloud hanging over you; a weight or burden you force yourself to carry. It's like a cancer browning in your spirit. Letting go of past hurts or offenses removes the cloud, the weight, the burden, and with time, like a surgeon's scalpel, removes the cancer growing inside of you. Too often, even when we actively try to forgive we find ourselves back in that same dark place...unable to look at the one who's the object of our unforgiveness. Quite honestly, the only way I know how to forgive is looking back and remembering the horrible things I have done and have been forgiven of. When we humble ourselves before others and ask for forgiveness, then we can exonerate and free those who have offended us, no matter how terrible that offense was. Otherwise, YOU are held captive and in bondage without the freedom to live life to your fullest potential. Your spirit is held hostage, detained within your own body by the weight of guild you have placed on someone else. Your encumbered spirit ultimately dies and then your body. The burden and the weight of unforgiveness cannot be underestimated. Unforgiveness will kill you.
Laughter... "Is good medicine" There's nothing like a good belly laugh to lift your spirit. This prescription for a broken spirit, found in Proverbs 17:22 is 99.9% effective. Prevention, perhaps most will agree is always better than trying to find a cure. Since stress is rated as a major contributing factor in many inflammatory diseases and it's been proven that laughter reduces stress levels, it's a pretty good bet that you can perhaps prevent some of these diseases and improve one's overall health with a regular does of laughter. Of course laughing with someone is twice the fun! It's been shown to increase productivity and improve relationships by improving the way we communicate with one another, so don't be ashamed to binge watch a few of the kids' animated movies with them and laugh out loud. It's good medicine and it's contagious!!