Glory, Body and Soul

Years ago in a new mother’s small group, a slender brunette with two toddlers shared that she lived to glorify God.

My brain stuttered as if she were speaking in ancient Sanskrit. What on earth was she talking about? Glorify God? What does that mean? I looked at her and thought she probably glorified God with her physical appearance. Tall, size-two, graceful and fashionable. (How she looked like that with two under four is another question.) If that’s a form of honor to God one could easily look at me and unequivocally state that I wasn’t a very good Christian role model. I yo-yo in the battle with middle-age spread and my facial expressions permanently claim that I’ve always been wired a little too tight.

Now in other areas I might have a leg up (okay, it’s not a good thing to compare–certainly in praise to Almighty God–but hey, I live in an ultra-competitive part of the country.) I feel confident that I am moving in a more God-glorying direction during prayer time, when I read the Bible, or when I recall many blessings on my morning walks. Perhaps even when I take good care of my family, or find a gentler way to correct my child when she needs it.

But glorifying God with my body? This troubles and puzzles me until I am faced with the truth. When I take good care of my body with proper food, exercise, rest — and yes, stepping on that scale to move the numbers in a more healthful direction — I am honoring God in the most basic way. How can I live a life that is useful for His purposes if I don’t have this human machine in good operating condition? Forget the unattainable size-two. I can certainly step up the work to regain the stronger, leaner, more athletic shape of a few decades ago. (With middle-age sensibilities, of course.) And, if I could do this without mentally beating myself up, perhaps that might be God-honoring too?

Let me renew these efforts and daily read 1 Corinthians 6:20 “For you were bought at a price; therefore glorify God in your body and in your spirit, which are God’s.”

Blessings and kind regards to you all.


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