Spring Training. All the baseball teams gearing up for the game. Getting ready, letting go of what doesn’t work and training for the new season. I am in a period of transition. A period of spring training. I have had to acknowledge a few weaknesses and change my thoughts and attitudes to learn new habits. I am learning to build my strength both physically, emotionally, and spiritually. Spring Training is a New Series I am writing to help us all refocus on our positive goals and exercise our faith.
Like the athletes we all have ‘muscles’ that we need to use or they atrophy. Muscles that have been in hibernation during the long cold winter. And our faith is the same way. It only gets exercised when we are using it. That means there will be trials,temptations and troubles we will get to go through – but they bring forth the GOLD of our faith. Press on my friends, together we can do this!
SPRING TRAINING EXERCISE #1:
Learning to Honor Our Bodies
Do you not know that your body is the temple (the very sanctuary) of the Holy Spirit Who lives within you, Whom you have received [as a Gift] from God? You are not your own,
You were bought with a price [purchased with a preciousness and paid for, made His own]. So then, honor God and bring glory to Him in your body. (1 Corinthians 6:19-20 AMP)
Taking Responsibility for Our Health
One of the hardest areas for me after a life of abuse is learning how to honor my body. When you have had innocence stolen from you and been raped you feel like trash. The enemy plants thoughts in your head that you deserved it and you will never be clean. And then add Abuser after Abuser who commanded you to do unholy things with your body and your relationship. Add those swine who sought out pornography and the evils it opens you up to. For many years I did not address or even talk about these things. I did not own my body. I let another use it and abuse it. I gave away my power and my self-respect to a pig.
I was married before and I wanted to please my husband so I did what he said. He was sick. I should have said no. It took me years to learn to say that word. Then I was in another relationship with a very sick man who was into the bondage scene (yeah, my own shades of grey nightmare). Let me say that just because a person has money does not mean they are healthy. Some of the ‘sickest’ people I matched up with had money and thought I was a piece of property and something they owned. I went from psycho to psycho as I didn’t believe I deserved any better. I had no boundaries and I thought I was trash. I had no idea who God said I was.
Some of the wisest advice I got from Grandma Pat, a beautiful woman who lived down the street from me. She used to come over singing these old hymns and just listen to me cry. I wouldn’t be here today if she had not taken the time to stop and come over and listen. She told me,
“You don’t have to dishonor God to please your husband.”
That was the home run for me. I finally got it. I could choose to honor God first. What those men asked me to do and what I did was wrong. God knows what happened. And I had to ask God to forgive me, and then forgive myself for giving authority of my body over to a swine. Yes, I cast my pearls before swine. And they trampled all over them. Because that’s what pigs do.
I ended those relationships. And didn’t date anyone for over a year. I learned how to take care of me and take authority back over my body. I asked God to break all the soul-ties with the blood of Jesus. I asked the Holy Spirit to come into those dark rooms and bring the deep healing I needed. I met with a counselor for a time and learned that the rape was not my fault. I did not ask for it. I did not want it. I did not asked to be abused. It wasn’t that way in the beginning. It happens over time. And it’s wrong. Not every husband/boyfriend honors his wife. I learned the hard way.
When I was on my own I had to learn how to ‘honor my body’ and choose to be well. I didn’t have to stay a victim. God promised to heal me and I chose to let Him. He turned my victim mentality into victorious. He gave me strength when I had none. He gave me hope when I was lost.
I had to learn what honor meant too. Words and actions like honor, cherish, love, treasure – they had no meaning to me after years of abuse. But honor meant I could say NO. I could make a new choice as to what I would accept for myself, and what I would reject. I had to learn what a healthy relationship looked like. And I had to learn what respect meant and how to respect myself after receiving disrespect from so many.
Ways to Honor Your Body:
1. Accept that God made you perfect and stop the negative self-talk.
This negative self-talk led to destructive self-harm for me. I had to ask God to quiet the voices of the Enemy of my soul. And I had to read the Word and learn who God says I am. I had to give God’s Word more authority over me than my past, my hurts, my feelings, or my pain. I even hand wrote scripture verses on index cards and carried them around with me in my everyday life. This way when I heard a negative thing in my head or from some other person I would read and meditate on a verse of God’s Word. It works, really. I honor my body when I believe what God says about me more than how I feel or what someone tells me or has told me.
2. Start to eat healthier.
I admit it, I love junk food and pizza. And after being depressed for so long I ate what I wanted when I wanted it. Instead of taking things away the Holy Spirit has asked me to start adding healthy things – nuts, fruits, and vegetables to my diet. I don’t keep track, I am not a food Nazi. But I have to say that I feel better after adding these things. It is a process and I am glad He is teaching me how to honor my body this way.
3. Stop watching smut TV.
Yep. No more. I refuse to entertain the spirit of lust. I will not even watch mildly graphic shows, no soap operas, no dating shows, no let’s swap wives or Hollywood Housewives or anything. I turn them off. Lust leads to all sorts of bad things. I have seen so many people break up relationships or marriages after the spirit of lust moves in. What comes in through the eyes makes residence in our minds. Thoughts become actions. I have seen people throw away what they have to try something they see happen on tv or a movie. And it’s wrong. I choose to shut that door and not entertain the spirit of lust. I honor my body by not even going there.
4. Start to exercise slowly.
I joined Planet Fitness with my teen daughter about a month ago. The first time I went I could only go 5 minutes on the elliptical machine. And with my past leg injury I didn’t even try the treadmill. Can I tell you after a month I don’t have to wear my leg brace anymore! I can go 20 minutes on the elliptical and have even used the treadmill. All from a girl that heard the Dr. tell me, “I hope this leg surgery works or you won’t walk again.” I honor my body by moving it and exercising it. My mood is better. I feel alive again and there is hope. It’s going to be a good season this year!
What about you?
How did you learn to ‘honor your body’?
Tune in next time for SPRING TRAINING – TAKING RESPONSIBILITY OF OUR MONEY
(Baseball with Heart image is available at puckettspond.com,
Pearl image from derricklphillips.wordpress.com)