As the season makes a shift, I take notice of how much happier people around me appear to be. There are more smiles. I feel as if there is a sense of deeper relaxation in the people with whom I have been connecting. More people are leaving their homes to spend time outside and soak up as much vitamin D as possible. They are looking to the sun to provide a much-needed boost. Once in it, they can’t get enough of the benefits the sun provides. The more vitamin D the body gets, the healthier the body, mind and spirit are. This one vitamin has such a great and lasting impact on everyone’s lives.
There are many things that call for our attention; however, there are many things that need us to stay consistent if we are going to fulfill dreams or achieve goals.
As I thought about Vitamin D, it led me to think about what Biblical Ds- if used and applied to our lives- would make us healthier in body, mind and spirit. What are the vital Ds that we should be drawn to and put into practise? What Ds would make us happier and have us more relaxed and at peace?
There are 3 D’s that come to my mind. I have practised these D’s and know from experience the benefits they add to my life. These are Discipline, Determination and Declaration.
I heard a quote that said, “discipline is about choosing between what you want now and what you want most.” There are many things that call for our attention; however, there are many things that need us to stay consistent if we are going to fulfill dreams or achieve goals. Being disciplined takes a lot of work and sometimes hurts in the moment of “now.” Yet, the results of making time for what is important or exercising the muscle of restraint brings about long-term results that we dream about. Just as we sit in the sun for long periods of time, we can discipline ourselves to sit in the presence of the Son longer and more often through prayer, reading the Word, meditating, worship and praise. These are disciplines that only grow our faith and draw us closer to God.
The Bible tells us in Hebrews 12:11 that “No discipline seems pleasant at the time, but painful. Later on, however, it produces a harvest of righteousness and peace for those who have been trained by it.”
There is a promised blessing in discipline. It will produce righteousness and peace. When we are at peace, our mind is stable. When we are at peace, we are physically stronger. When we are at peace, we have better relationships. All of this honours God and brings happiness to our lives.
Discipline and Determination are very connected. I see them as a different side of the same coin. A disciplined person keeps going and stays determined. A determined person is disciplined and keeps their eyes on the prize. Determination keeps a person moving forward and pressing on against all odds. As Philippians 3:13-14 states, “Brothers and sisters, I do not consider myself yet to have taken hold of it. But one thing I do: Forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead, I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus.” Determination allows you to recognize that if you do not give up, you will reap as Galatians 6 tells us. Perseverance is always rewarded. Determination builds mental stamina and strength. Celebrating what you didn’t give up on is a reward no one wants to pass up.
If we are to stay determined, we need to give ourselves the right messages. Our brain will act on the messages we believe. The Bible tells us in Proverbs 18:21 that “The tongue has the power of life and death, and those who love it will eat its fruit.” We will live out good or bad, what we speak. Declaring the Lord’s truth with certainty brings blessing into our lives. Proverbs 16:24 tells us that what we speak affects our soul and body. “Gracious words are a honeycomb, sweet to the soul and healing to the bones.”
I don’t know about you, but I want to live and live well. I don’t want the time and effort I put into staying disciplined and determined to be wasted. The Bible tells me that I cannot live only on food but on how the Spirit feeds me. Matthew 4:4 states, “Jesus answered, “It is written: ‘Man shall not live on bread alone, but on every word that comes from the mouth of God.’”
Discipline and determination need to be fed with truth. They can’t survive without God’s Word, and neither can we.
In every season, we can smile and be filled with optimism and joy if we choose to make these D’s part of our daily, monthly, yearly intake. They have a lasting impact on your life and everyone else’s. The more D’s you get, the healthier your body, mind and spirit will be. Let us all work towards health and wholeness.