Are You Healthy?
A science teacher brought in four healthy green plants to his classroom one day, and divided his students into four groups. He then proceeded to have them tend to the plants over the next couple of weeks.
The first group, he gave them fertilizer, water and a place next to the window for sunlight.
The second, he gave them fertilizer and a place next to the window for sunlight.
The third, he gave them water and a place next to the window.
The fourth, he gave them fertilizer and water, but required them to store their plant in a closet.
Each day, the class made an observation of their plants. They noticed over time, that the plants were changing, and all in a different way. One day, when class started, the teacher had the class collect the plants, and they were to document how the plants had done.
The plant that had sunlight, fertilizer and water was green and thriving. Some students said it was healthy. The plant that had sunlight and fertilizer but no water was withered, the leaves were turning brown, and it had little life left in it.
The third plant, the one with sunlight and water but no fertilizer looked healthy. The teacher had the students set it beside the first plant and compare, and everyone agreed the plant that also had fertilizer had a deeper green color, and seemed to be thriving better.
The students who had put their plant in the closet with fertilizer and water but no sunlight, had a droopy plant, the tips of the leaves were turning brown, and it just looked weak and dying.
At this point, the teacher left the classroom for a minute and returned with a fifth plant. The students noticed it looked dead, dry, and the leaves were falling off. The teacher told the students it looked this way before he had started watering it, fertilizing it, and setting it in the sun but otherwise, he had given it the same care that the first plant, the thriving plant had received. He had started feeding it the same day the students had begun their experiment. They all agreed that all the sunshine, water and fertilizer in the world could not help this plant.
Let us all do a bit of self reflection today. We can easily draw a comparison from this story to our spiritual well-being can't we? If we are healthy and thriving, that's great, God be praised. If we need some fertilizer to be thriving, are we searching for it? Maybe we need more sunshine, or more water. Are we diligently pursuing what we need to be healthy, or are we content to be withered and half dead?
Where do we find ourselves? If we are spiritually dead, unlike the plant in our story, a thriving life is still possible, but only with the things necessary for life. Do we understand what those are? Do we know what it takes to be alive in Christ Jesus? If we continue to pursue the things that separated us from God in the first place, do we think we will ever be healthy again? Or maybe we have never been healthy at all. If we have any life in us at all, let us pursue what God provides what we need to be healthy and grow.
Christ has the sunlight, food and water we need to grow and be healthy, and we need the right amount of each of those. If we think we can be healthy just reading the Bible, and not have anything to do with His church, we are fooling ourselves. If we think filling a pew on Sunday morning and not taking in the daily food of His Word, we again won't ever be very healthy. If we are hiding in a closet, avoiding the fellowship and love of our brethren, we may not be dead, but we are not thriving either.
Whatever condition you find yourself in today, is there something we as a church can help you with? We would love to pray for you, and study with you, and help you obtain whatever it is that you need to be healthy and happy in Christ Jesus. Jesus offers everything people need to be alive and spiritually healthy, and He offers it to everyone, and it's free.