This episode is part 1 of a multi-part series on the spiritual component of health. I address a topic near and dear to my heart, how our spiritual condition impacts our physical vitality.
Topics Discussed...w / Time Stamps
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David Sandstrom 0:00
Here's a sample of what you'll hear on this episode of natural health matters. Proverbs three, verses seven and eight says this is a very encouraging verse. Do not be wise in your own eyes, fear the Lord and turn away from evil. It will be healing to your body, and refreshment to your bones. Welcome to the Natural Health Matters podcast where it's all about maximizing your health potential so that you can pursue the abundant life more effectively. I'm your host, David Sandstrom, naturopathic doctor, and biblical health coach. And this is episode number 53.
David Sandstrom 0:43
Well, we've got 52 episodes in the books, we celebrated the one year anniversary to Natural Health Matters podcast last week. And I realized it's been a year since I started the podcast. And I have yet to address an issue that is really dear to my heart that I really want to address thoroughly. And that is the spiritual component to health. You know, there's a lot of people in the health and wellness world I found that are Christians or followers of Jesus Christ, but they don't talk about that publicly. Because I guess they're afraid they'll alienate a portion of the audience. Well, I don't share that concern. I feel as though there's a calling in my life, to minister to the body of Christ, to help those people that have put their faith and trust in Jesus Christ as Savior and Lord, to see them become more whole. I believe I'm in a unique position to speak to this topic, because I've been studying the Bible fairly diligently for the last 30 or so years. And I'm also trained as a naturopath. And I see complete unity between what the Bible teaches on health and wellness, and the naturopathic approach to health. Now, we're going to be talking about nature, apathy in more detail in future episodes. But just suffice it to say that when we align our lives more fully with God's designed for spirit, mind and body, we maximize our health potential. And that's the naturopathic approach to health. I want to take my time going through this series, I don't want to rush it, there's going to be at least several episodes, I'm thinking maybe a dozen or more, I'm going to lean pretty heavily on my book, the Christians guide to holistic health. I may even do some long or extensive quotes from the book because it's not plagiarism. They're my words, and I wrote the book. So sometimes when I'm looking to explain a certain topic, and I referenced my book, I realized I can't say it any better than I already said in the book. So once in a while, I will be quoting from the book. I'll also be referencing and quoting from the Bible, because the Bible is our authority when it comes to the spiritual component to health. And we might throw in a few guest appearances here and there during this series, just to break things up a little bit, because there are some people that want to be on the show that I think you're gonna enjoy hearing from frequently I get people reach out to me that want to be guests on the show. And they claim to be experts in the spiritual component to help. And then I find out I go to their website and talk to them, they I find out they're into tarot card reading, or they're a psychic, or they're a spiritual medium where they talk with spirits, or they've studied under a shaman and they're into shamanism. Well, those people are not going to be guests on this show. Because those approaches to spiritual or spirituality are not consistent with biblical teaching. You know, things like ouija boards, divination, all those things have their origin in demonic activity. And I'm not going to have anything to do with that. There's a lot of bizarre things that people feel qualify as the spiritual components of health. But we need to apply God's wisdom to all of it. We need to make sure all the advice we choose to embrace is filtered through a biblical lens. That's why I called my book that Christians guide to holistic health. Now, to some that title may sound like an oxymoron. Well, it all depends on how you define holistic health. If you want to know more about that topic, listen to episode number 42, where I changed the name from Holistic Health Matters to natural health matters. And I addressed that topic in detail there in Episode 42. I want to help guide you through the maze of natural and holistic health. So again, the people I'm speaking to with this series are people who have surrendered their lives to the Lordship of Jesus Christ, and entered into that personal relationship with him and how the indwelling of the Holy Spirit. If that's not you, much of what I'm going to share in this series is not going to make sense to you. Now, if you want to learn more about what I believe in how to enter into a relationship with Jesus Christ, go to my website, Davidsandstrom.com, forward slash statement of faith, all one word, DavidSandstrom.com, forward slash, statement of faith. I've got a great video on there, and I've got some more details about what it is I actually believe And how you can enter into a relationship with Jesus Christ.
David Sandstrom 5:04
Now, I want people to know that I didn't make this stuff up. The Bible is my authority, and the Bible is trustworthy. It's stood the test of time, it's always been the all time bestseller. The New York Times publishes their best seller list every week. And they leave off the book that is always the number one bestseller. And that is the Bible by a longshot, because it's far and away, the best seller always has been, probably always will be, they just leave that off the list. But it is a reliable historical record. And it is the inspired Word of God. In fact, it's the only book in all of antiquity, the Bible that actually makes that claim. In the New Testament. In Second Timothy chapter three, we see this, All Scripture is inspired by God, and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, for training in righteousness, so that the man or woman of God may be adequate, equipped for every good work. So the Bible is the inspired Word of God, and it's our user manual for all areas of life. If you've truly surrendered to the Lordship of Jesus Christ, everything in life becomes sacred or holy. Your marriage is sacred, your sexuality, your parenting becomes sacred, your career, your recreation, your thought life. If you're truly following after Jesus, everything should be bathed in the principles gleaned from biblical teachings.
David Sandstrom 6:35
Knowing Jesus Christ personally shouldn't just be a fire insurance policy. Many churches I've been to over the years teach something like, pray this prayer so that when you die, you won't go to hell, you'll go to heaven. Yes, salvation is awesome, something we should be eternally grateful for. But what about the time spent on earth before we die? Some churches get so caught up in evangelism, sharing the good news about Jesus Christ, that they forget about discipleship. In Matthew 28, Jesus shared the Great Commission, and he didn't say, go and make converts. He said, Go make disciples. disciples are students. When we become a disciple of Jesus Christ, His teachings are designed to lead us into a rich, meaningful, Joy filled, abundant life here on earth. And the book of Psalm chapter 27, we find this, I would have despaired, unless I had believed that I would see the goodness of the Lord in the land of the living. That's here on Earth. That's now that's today. I believe that the abundant life includes the health and vitality necessary to accomplish our missions, and fulfill our purpose. We'll have a whole episode in this series on does God want us healthy? And we're going to be talking about another episode. So we're just gonna put that aside for now.
David Sandstrom 7:57
As I mentioned, I've been studying the Bible for many years I started I became a follower of Christ in 1993. And I started studying they dropped the in 2004 about 10 years later. What I found was, naturopathy, and biblical teaching on health are very consistent and completely compatible. The Bible teaches that what makes something right or wrong, is whether or not it's consistent with the nature and character of God. Lying is wrong, because God is truth. Adultery is wrong because God is faithful. giving to the poor is right because God is Generous and Merciful. hatred and murder are wrong because God is love. This is what we call natural law. And natural law is what our nation's Declaration of Independence was appealing to when they penned these words, We hold these truths to be self evident, that all men are created equal, endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable rights. These include the right to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. When we cooperate with this natural law, but we apply God's nature to our decision making in our everyday lives, life becomes easier, less stressful, more fulfilling, and joy filled because we're applying God's design for the way we're supposed to live. It's a lot easier to swim with the current than it is against it. We make far more progress with less effort if we're swimming with the current, in the same fashion, were made in the image of God and we have a design in nature as well. There are natural laws that apply to our health and well being. We need to eat, we have to sleep. we're wired for loving relationships. When we embrace our natural God given design, and the natural laws that govern that design, we enjoy better health. That's the naturopathic approach to health. I contend that we maximize our health potential by aligning Our lives more fully with God's natural design for spirit, mind and body. That's what my book is about. And that's what this podcast is about. Do you see how spiritual health is shaping up to be the foundation for health at all levels, whole person health and well being?
David Sandstrom 10:17
Let me take it even further. We are a spirit, we have a mind. And we live in a body. In each part of the human condition is interconnected, and interdependent. interconnected means that one part can't exist without the others. interdependent means what affects one part of our being will by necessity all to the others, for good or bad. In addition to that, there's a hierarchy to our being. Our spirits are the highest and most noble part of our being and they're designed to be connected to an animated by God. There's that famous passage in the book of john chapter 17, where Jesus prays for all believers. Starting in verse 22. He says this, the glory which you have given me, I have given them that they may be one just as we are one, I in them, in you and me, that they may be perfected in unity. A spirit animated by a loving relationship with God will animate our minds in healthy ways. A mind animated by a healthy spirit, will healthily animate our brains, in our brains run our bodies. Do you see how foundational spiritual health is?
David Sandstrom 11:32
Now, here's an important principle. God is our loving Heavenly Father. And as any earthly father would want, God wants what's best for his children. Unlike earthly fathers, God is omniscient. He knows everything. He even knows the future. He knows the outcome our choices are going to have before we make them. And God knows what we need. In the book of Matthew, chapter seven, verse 11, we see this, if you then being evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father who is in heaven, give what is good to those who asked Him. God is love, and he cannot act contrary to his nature. And everything God says or does is filtered through his loving kindness. As a result, God is trustworthy. So we have two big takeaways here, two foundational truths. When God tells us to do something, it's for our benefit. And if he tells us to avoid something, it's for our protection. You can take those two truths to the bank, and we've got to hold on to those truths. It's super important. That's why the Bible says in the book of Psalm chapter 25, verses eight through 10, good and upright is the Lord. He teaches the humble his way. All the pads of the Lord are loving kindness and truth. And then over New Testament back in Matthew chapter 11, verse 28, to 30. Come to me, all you who are weary and heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn from me, for I am gentle, and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light. God's commands are designed to lighten our load. So what's the teach? What's this teaching about the yoke? Well, back in Jesus day, most people were into agriculture, most people were farmers. And if you wanted to plow your field, you could do it yourself manually. Or you could use an animal like an ox to plow the field more efficiently. Well, the older ox would know how to handle the the plow, so they would take a younger animal and yoke them together to what the old one, and the older animal would teach the younger one, how to do the plowing. And that's the metaphor Jesus is using here. He wants us to be yoked to him, because he knows the way when we submit to the authority of Jesus Christ, life is just easier. If we were going to go on a jungle Safari, we would do well to hire an experienced guide. The guide knows the route. He knows where the wild animals are hanging out. He knows where there would be some possible poisonous snakes. He knows where the cliffs are. He knows where the hazards are. So we do well to stick close to our guide on a jungle Safari. The same is true with life. God knows the way he knows the potential hazards. We do well to stick close to Him and do what he says. This is where we find our protection and safety. We need to surrender to God's goodness because he has our health and well being in mind. surrendering to God's goodness. Where we'll find real peace. This is our starting point for spiritual health. We've got to hold on to these truths. When we look at scripture this way, the Bible becomes a plethora of useful information for health and well being, acting out of love. When he inspired the Holy Scriptures, Old and New Testaments, God had our health and well being in mind, not simply spiritual health, but health in mind and body as well. When we follow God's advice out of grateful hearts, blessings follow as byproducts of our obedience. We don't follow Christ for the perks. We follow him because he's worthy of our worship. We serve him out of grateful hearts. And the health benefits are simply side effects of following after God.
David Sandstrom 15:49
Jesus bottom line does when he gave us the great commandment, he said, if we love God, love others and love ourselves, we fulfill the scriptures. spiritual health is all about love, love for God, love for others, and love for ourselves. We're going to be talking a lot more about each of these avenues, where we're designed to experience the power of love. And there is no greater healing power in the universe, than the power of love. God is after whole person health. In third john chapter one, verse two, we see this, above all else, I pray that you may be in good health. And for First Thessalonians chapter five, verse 23, we see this May the God of peace himself sanctify you entirely. May your whole body soul and spirit be kept blameless. So God is concerned with the whole person. He doesn't simply want to save us from our sins and let us struggle through life alone. He wants to give us life abundant john 1010. The abundant life is found in the context of loving relationships. Jesus is all about relationships, and bringing new life if we pair his teaching on the great commandment, and abundant life, we've got the Bible in a nutshell. So it stands to reason that making relationships our priority is critical to abundant living, and will serve our health building efforts. Whenever Jesus taught, he was teaching spiritual truths. The miracles he performed supported his message. The parables he used, always shed light on spiritual truth. So if we have clear biblical teaching on certain subjects, that qualifies them as spiritual issues, the more areas of our lives, we can surrender to the Lordship of Jesus Christ, the better off we'll be. Our obedience to God's word is not for his sake, but for our own benefit. When we submit to God's instructions, we enjoy his blessings and protections. In the book of Deuteronomy, chapter 28, verse two, we see this, all these blessings will come upon you and overtake you, if you obey the Lord your God. When I was a teenager growing up in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, I used to love to go to the beach. And I love the windy days because the bigger the surf, the better, my friends and I used to love the body surf. No, no surfboards, no boogie boards, just us and the waves. And if you got yourself in the right position, and you swam real hard, one of these big waves would just come upon you and overtake you, and you could stop swimming, and just enjoy the ride in the same fashion, what we decide to do things God's way in life, we can stop the struggle, we can allow his blessings to come to us and overtake us like that wave did for me on the beach, and sit back and relax, and let God be responsible for the outcome.
David Sandstrom 18:57
God's blessings include improved physical health. Proverbs three, verses seven and eight says this is a very encouraging verse. Do not be wise in your own eyes, fear the Lord and turn away from evil. It will be healing to your body and refreshment to your bones. And then in the next chapter, Proverbs chapter four, verses 20 through 22. My son, give attention to my words, incline your ear to my sayings. Do not let them depart from your sight, keep them in the midst of your heart, for their life to those who find them in health to all their body. So we have some really encouraging words from Scripture, about our physical health.
David Sandstrom 19:43
But we have to notice the if thens in the Bible, a lot of times God's blessings are conditional. Alternatively, when we fail to heed his instructions, we forfeit those protections. We can't expect to rely on greasy Grace and simply live our lives any way we see fit and expect God's blessings. If we're going to maximize our health potential and experience the healing power of holism, we must become doers of the Word of God. In the book of James chapter one, verse 25, we see this, but one who looks intently at the perfect law of liberty, and abides by it, not having become a forgetful hearer, but an effectual doer. This man will be blessed in what he does. The truth will set us free, but only if it's applied. Because of God's great love, he cares deeply about our suffering, but he cannot condone sinful rebellion to his word. God's desires and attentions for us will always lead to more fruit of the Spirit. What's the fruit of the Spirit Galatians chapter five verses 22 and 23. Love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self control. In addition, God's intentions will be centered around relational connectedness. All of this has health promoting demonic suggestions with the opposite. demonic suggestions will produce more isolation, hurt, misery and stress. First Peter five eight says, the enemy goes about prowling like a roaring lion, seeking someone to devour. As far as our health is concerned, it's peace we're after not stress. Holy living brings more peace. The pursuit of righteousness or holiness therefore becomes foundational to our health because that's where we find real peace, and more peace brings more health. Alright, this is probably a good place to hit the pause button. We've set the stage in this first episode in this series on the spiritual component to health. And I hope that you've got your appetite wet, and you're looking forward to more episodes I sure am. So we'll continue this conversation next week. For more go to DavidSandstrom.com. in the show notes for each episode, you'll find links to all the resources that were mentioned, as well as a full transcript with timestamps that you can download for free. In addition, I always include a content upgrade with each show, which is a free download that is designed to help you go deeper with that subject. Once again, thank you for listening, and I'll talk with you next week. Be blessed