To be spiritually formed is to be whole, to be fully rounded in our approach to life. Frequently though that is not what we find, it seems in our nature to focus on one or two areas to the exclusion of others, or to go to an extreme in some area to the neglect of others.
We are made spirit, soul and body. Some have so emphasized spirit that they have virtually ended up denying our humanity and this world in which we live – i.e. the denial of passion, enjoyment. Some focus entirely on the mind and reduce Christianity to an educational exercise where experience is totally neutered. Still others have got so taken up with body and the present that the eternal has been reduced to the here and now – heaven and hell are not eternal realities but our present experience of life.
We were made by God, spirit, soul and body, fully rounded, wonderfully whole, relational beings. Adam and Eve interacted with God who is Spirit, lived in a relational unity with one another, in a beautiful garden they were called to nurture and enjoy, and engaged their minds together in processing this with-God life.
Sin came in and distorted all those realities.
Something happened in the human spirit, and the connection with God was broken, our passions became distorted and the big pull was downward, basal. Suddenly relationships became more challenging as distrust and selfishness took over, not only that, our bodies became subject to frailty, to weakness and ultimately death.
The original goodness was gone, but not without trace, elements of it show up from time to time. The balance of life was no longer there though, distortion set in, we were no longer whole, we were out of kilter.
But in Christ all that changes, we are redeemed, saved, made new, being transformed, a transformation that is meant to affect our whole life, spirit, soul and body – it’s not just a ticket to heaven when I die.
No, salvation is far, far, more, our spirit is made alive and we now have a real and vital relationship with God – a relationship that needs to be pursued as all relationships do, our minds are reoriented from the realm of the Flesh to the realm of the Spirit – but needing to be renewed through the word of God, our bodies now the temple of the Holy Spirit – therefore to be properly cared for.
Spirit, soul, body. A whole. Each impacts the other.
Do you place more emphasis on one than the other? Do you care for each part?
- How is your spirit, is it healthy? How is your relationship with Father God? Are you being filled with the Spirit? Are you a worshipper?
- What about your soul, the area of mind, will and emotions, are you seeking it’s daily renewal? What are you reading, watching, thinking?
- And your body – are you taking proper care of it? What are you eating – is it healthy? What about exercise, are you getting enough? What about rest?