God created us multifaceted. We are created with body, mind, and spirit. (physical, psychological/emotional, and spiritual). I will be the first to tell you that I haven't thought much of body and mind when it comes to spiritual growth. But over the years of discipling women, I have wrestled with the discipleship process when it comes to things like feelings of depression or feelings of meaninglessness or not purpose.
When I would meet with women and they would share that they were struggling with depression or despair, I tried to come at it from the spiritual plane. I am not saying that the spritual won't heal the mind. God's Word is powerful and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness, so that the servant of God may be thoroughly equipped for every good work." (2 Timothy, 3:26-17)
But sometimes, as Tim Keller says in his podcast titled The Still Small Voice, "you don't need prayer. You certainly don't need a lecture. Sometimes you certainly don't need a sermon. Sometimes you need a walk at the sea, and a meal at a great restaurant, and to sleep in."
God started there with Elijah (1 Kings 19). He feed him and gave him rest. The next thing He did was allowed Elijah to talk it out. He listened to him vent about how things weren't going as planned and he didn't know the purpose in it all.
Then....after the physical and psychological needs were met...God speaks to Elijah in a small voice. The spiritual.
BOOM! Mind blowing for me. As a women who LOVES discipleship and sharing God's word, I was blown away by this concept that we were created multifaceted so God deals with us with a multifaceted approach.
So what does that mean for discipleship?
It means I need to change my view and my approach to follow God's example of how He deals with His people.
Not to mention, it means FREEDOM! As one who struggles off and on with feelings of despair and meaninglessness, this was FREEDOM!
Sometimes I need a spa day. I need a long hot bath with some wonderful smelling essential oils, and soft jazz playing in the background to clear my mind. For some reason this never seemed spiritual until now.
I have discipled women for over 20 years and I hate to admit that most of my advice was...read your Bible more, pray harder, do more spiritual practices, and stop the destructive behavior. It was always in a very loving and caring way, of course, but I don't think I ever told anyone that they just needed to walk by the sea and eat a good meal and rest. I mean that goes against our very culture. We are a do more, have more, be more society. To stop, eat, and rest is NOT the American way. And unfortunately it is not the Christian way in most circles either. I mean Elijah spent 40 days seeking the Lord. When is the last time you spent 40 days just seeking God's face? Or told someone to take 40 days to see the face of the Lord?
"When a worldview reduces everything to the physical, reduces everything to the spiritual, reduces everything to the psychological, it's not going to deal with real problems, If you reduce everything, you're not going to deal with the complexity of reality. You're not going to really help people. But the God of the Bible never does such a thing.
Because the God of the Bible has invented everyone of those aspects of reality. And the God of the Bible is redeeming them all."
Did you catch that?! God is redeeming body, mind, and spirit!
The very way He created you to be...a living being with appetite, desire, passion, emotion...He redeemed at the cross. The very thing Satan tried to take away from us in the garden. BOOM! Jesus goes to bat for us to get it back. Activation. Coming alive. Abundant life! All to display His glory!
In my mission to help women lead fruitful and purposeful lives, I realized that I needed to take a comprehensive approach, a wholistic view on discipleship. One that incorporates body, mind, and spirit. You may notice a new tab on the website titled "True Beauty." This will house resources for fueling and activating our mind and body. This will deal with all things physical and psychological and how we can bring that under the authority of our Creator.
True Beauty is a life lived body, mind, and spirit. It is a life cultivating ALL that God has given us. So don't neglect those long baths with smooth music and some wonderful smelling essential oils. This is probably one of the most spiritual things you can do for yourself. I give you permission!