A minister of the gospel must understand the serious necessity of caring for oneself in a manner that promotes health and longevity. …Most clergy are caretakers of others…but rarely are they good caretakers of self. –Gary Kinnaman and Alfred Ells Leaders that Last, p. 34.
Pastors are a pretty unhealthy bunch. We eat on the run and don’t eat what is best for us. We work too hard. We don’t sleep enough. We sit at a desk for long hours. We carry anxiety and stress.
Pastors are overweight, have high blood pressure, are diabetic, suffer from depression.
God has given us our bodies–and we are to treat them well. Our bodies are a sacred trust. We live and minister through our bodies.
My doctor a few months ago told me that I needed to start paying attention to my body. I could no longer neglect it. I wasn’t in bad shape…but I could be in better shape. So I–
- started exercising regularly
- changed my eating habits–eating better foods
- started taking vitamin supplements
- slept longer at night
- found new ways to relax and simply breathe
The past four months have been amazing. I lost some weight, my numbers improved. I think I am a nicer person (not sure on this one). And I simply feel better. My doctor said: isn’t it great to be feeling better the older you are getting? I like the way things are going.
My encouragement to you–don’t neglect your body. Take care of your body. Let your body serve you well. We can only serve others well as we attend to our selves.