There is an epidemic in our world today. I am not speaking about COVID-19, though that has a lot to do with it. I am referencing the overall mental health and spiritual wellness of the world. Personally, I do not believe that people are living intentional, balanced, and sensible lives. We need to take a look inward at our life, before we suffer from a variety of mental health issues.
How can we get over anxiety and depression? What can we do to assess our spiritual wellness? We need to discover our faults and invest in spiritual activity to improve our overall spiritual health. Once we have discovered the path, we can lead others to it. This is why Jesus echoes the teachings of the Jews that even the children memorized: “You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, with all your mind, and with all of your strength… You shall love your neighbor as yourself” (Mark 12:29-31). All of the law and prophets hang on these teachings. Therefore, we will use these four thought to introduce intentional Christian living.
Love the Lord your God with all your heart. Intentional Christian living allows you to manage your emotions. Often Christians focus solely on one of two options: spirit or truth. There is a balance in worship (John 4:24) and in life. Our spirit, the emotional side, can be manipulated or lack rationality. Likewise people can abuse or twist the truth to become more harsh and legalistic. There must be a balance in order to build emotional toughness.
Love the Lord your God with all your soul. Intentional Christian living is a mindset which brings more awareness of God, His work, and His Word into your daily life. It is tuning into the blessings of life and all its splendor… while also acknowledging the chaos at the same time. The Spirit of God ought to flow through us, and guide us, into making more “spiritual”decisions. When have you closed your eyes and taken a look into your soul? It’s the only part of you going to Heaven.
Love the Lord your God with all your mind. Intentional Christian living is an all-inclusive approach to living each day as a Christian in the world. Stillness and meditation is needed to connect our body, mind, soul and spirit. We’ve got to surrender all (what we are, what we have been, and what we will be) to live a healthier and happier life. The Lord must guide our minds.
Love the Lord your God with all your strength. Intentional Christian living is when you become consciously aware of your surroundings. How are you reacting to situations around you? What about the people? Why are you focusing on what you cannot control? You cannot maintain control of any given situation, but you can have self-control. You must make conscious choices and take action to be intentional. Plan. Purpose. Create. Try to do what will help you to get closer to where you want to be in life and how you want to succeed! Be your own personal motivatior.
If we ever plan to fulfill any of these things above… we have to focus on that last part that says, “love your neighbor as yourself.” Do you love yourself? If not, then how can you effectively love your neighbor. Live intentional. Make a choice to love yourself. Allow that to prepare you for something far greater. Let God use you to His glory.
Obviously, we are only seeing a glimpse of what is possible. All things are possible with God (Mark 9:23, Philippians 4:13). Nothing is to hard for God. No enemy He cannot face. No obstacle He cannot avoid. He works miracles and specializes in the unnatural. He has a plan. You and I just have to surrender to it!
You are loved!
Dr. Ray Reynolds