I have been very blessed with good health. I have never spent a night in the hospital. I have not contracted any serious disease or illness. In fact, my doctor’s office called one time to check and see if my they should keep my records since I had not been to the office in four years.Now, I have not been completely free of sickness. Years ago when I was working 80-90 hours a week starting a church from scratch, I wore myself down and got pleurisy and pneumonia. I have had both gallstones and kidney stones. Each of those miserable experiences required medical attention.
When my doctor wondered whether I was still a patient since I never came to the office, it caught my wife’s attention. She noted that I did not go for annual physicals like she has been doing for years. I reminded her of when one of the guys in my church had given me a tour of his medical lab business. And how he had taken my blood and run all these tests. The results showed I was in excellent health.
She remarked that had been several years ago, and I was not getting any younger. So I decided to start having an annual physical. I just had this year’s done recently. My doctor checks me out and asks a lot of questions. They take a blood and urine sample and do their tests. Then I receive a report about everything from cholesterol to calcium.
The whole purpose of the annual physical is to look for signs of good health. Is your blood pressure the right number? Is your white blood cell count correct? Are the numbers for triglycerides, glucose and creatinine in a healthy range? If so then you are physically healthy.
What about spiritual health? Should you have a spiritual check-up? If you did what would be the signs of spiritual health? Here are 10 signs you are spiritually healthy. This may not be an exhaustive list but it is a good baseline for evaluating your spiritual health.
You Have Gratitude For God’s GraceThe message of the Gospel is incredible. Jesus loves us so much He died on the cross for our sins so we can be reconciled with God. His grace forgives us and welcomes us into a relationship with Him. This should never cease to lead us to gratitude and if we no longer are moved by it there is a problem.
You Enjoy Going to ChurchGoing to church should not become another obligation we must fulfill - like doing laundry, paying bills and preparing meals. We can begin to think like a consumer not a parishioner. We can end up focusing on externals: being “fed”, the quality of the kid’s ministry and whether we “feel” the Spirit. We need to prepare for worship, not expect the church service to do it all for us.
You Care About the LostWe have been given a Great Commission to share the Gospel. We are Christ’s ambassadors proclaiming His message of reconciliation. We should be daily praying for those we know who don’t know Christ and doing whatever we can to help them to get saved. But we may become distracted and focused on our own needs rather than the greatest single need of any person.
You Are More Attracted to Spiritual Things Than Worldly OnesWe should use our time and money pursuing things that have eternal value. If not we can be drawn to what the world offers rather than what Christ calls us to. Our interests may become increasingly about things that can lead to sin or take us away from where we should be. Temptations are then not resisted but rationalized.
You Are Serving in the ChurchEvery Christ follower has been given spiritual gifts. We are to use them in service to others. Yet, we may spend our time on what we want to do rather than what needs we can meet. Jesus is our example of servanthood and we should be serving others instead of selfishly focusing on our own interests.
You Are Making Jesus First in Your LifeJesus should be our first priority. Our lives need to be centered on doing His will. Of the many options for how we spend our time and money Jesus needs to be truly first. He should be more than just our professed priority and our actions will reveal it. One look at our checkbook and datebook will show if He is really first or not.
You Have a Regular Devotional LifeEach day a Christ follower needs to spend time with Jesus in prayer and Bible reading. A regular devotional time is crucial spiritually just like regular eating and exercise are vital for physical health. A growing relationship with Jesus is impossible if no time is spent with Him on a regular basis.
You Are Giving to God’s WorkGenerosity is the hallmark of Christianity. The Bible is abundantly clear that everything we have is God’s and not tithing and giving offerings is stealing from God. When you spend all your money on your wants and needs and there is nothing left for God there is an issue. Justifications for not giving may abound but God’s expectations are undeniable.
You Regularly Attend Church ServicesAttending church services provides a weekly opportunity to worship with other Christ-followers, hear God’s Word proclaimed and fellowship together. It is what it means to be part of a local church community. Frequently missing services makes it highly unlikely you can grow spiritually and connect relationally.
You Are Honest With YourselfWhen Aaron made the golden calf and Moses asked him how it happened Aaron was not honest with himself or Moses. He did not own the fact that he had made an idol. Examining these signs of spiritual health mean nothing if we are not honest about where we are at spiritually. And no one can do this self-evaluation but you.
Getting a physical exam is the beginning of improving your health not the end. If you need to lower your blood pressure or increase you calcium you must take action. Knowing is simply not enough to be healthy.
So too this spiritual evaluation is a starting point. As you identify areas you need to change do something about it. Just start with one thing to improve your spiritual health. And begin working on it today.