Raise Your Ebenezer Stone

There are lots of reasons why people try to lose weight and trim down. Looking good and feeling good are some of the most common reasons people want to lose weight. Many just want to improve their health and hopefully extend their lives. I want to challenge you to think about this from a different perspective.

I believe that we all have a spiritual part to our existence, that we are spiritual beings. When people think of me, they have some mental picture of my face and body; but that is not the real me. If you were to open up my chest and see my heart, you would still not see the real me. 

I think the real me is my spirit or my soul.

I use my body as a conduit, which lets my spirit interact with the physical world. It is how I relate to my physical existence. But my body really isn’t the “real” me. It is a tool that God has given me to relate to the physical world.

I think we have a spiritual obligation to take care of our bodies. The one thing that God gave you, the thing that he did not give to anyone else in the entire history of our human existence, is you. It is a one-of-a-kind wonder. Even identical twins have differences that can be seen.

In the book of Matthew 25:14–30, Jesus teaches on the parable of the talents. Many of you are very familiar with this parable. If you have never heard about this story in the Bible, I would encourage you to read it today. This story is about a master who leaves his servants with various amounts of talents (money). He goes away to a far country and when he returns, he wants to see what his servants did with the talents.

Some of the servants did well and multiplied the talents. The master gave them a reward. One servant, however, did not do so well. He took his talent and buried it. The master had him punished, and Jesus said that he was a wicked servant.

Romans 12:1 encourages us to make our bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable to God. It is our spiritual duty to take care of our bodies daily.

I believe that we will be held accountable for how we use our bodies. I think we should think of our bodies as a “talent” that is loaned to us by our Master. We will have to do some explaining someday for how we treated or even abused our bodies. Fortunately, God is a God of grace, but there will be some explaining to do.

In 1 Samuel 7:12, Samuel took a large stone and raised it up, calling it the Ebenezer stone. Ebenezer means "stone of help." It symbolized to the nation of Israel that they were returning to the ways of the Lord.

They had just won a great victory under the leadership of Samuel and were essentially getting a fresh start with serving the Living God. The stone marked a turning point for the people of Israel. They were no longer going to live under the fear of their enemies. They were victorious.

You may not have been doing so well with taking care of the body that has been loaned to you. There is great hope for your future. Today you can start a new lifestyle, one of health and wellness. Raise your Ebenezer stone today and determine that you will be a good steward of your body. You have a spiritual obligation to do so.

Now if taking care of your body is a spiritual obligation, then we should expect some spiritual help. I believe that God does want us to have healthy bodies and he wants us to treat and fuel them with an eye toward being good stewards.

A simple prayer I would ask you to consider before you eat anything is to ask God to help you glorify Him by the way you fuel your body. (I always feel a little funny asking God to bless the unhealthy food I am about to over-consume.) I believe God will help us, but we need to educate ourselves on how to take care of our bodies. I have found God will not do for me what I should do for myself.

I believe we have a spiritual obligation to take care of our bodies and that He will help us on our journey.