As I shared last weekend in my message on spiritual nutrition, one of my favorite wrestlers as a child was Dusty Rhodes. Not just any Dusty Rhodes but “The American Dream” Dusty Rhodes. After one of his hard-fought wins(!), he was interviewed by “Mean Gene” Okerlund and asked about his training regiment.
His response: “I train on beer and pizza.”
Many of you probably didn’t realize you were training to be a professional wrestler.
Just as good nutrition is important to live a healthy physical life, we need a good spiritual diet to stay spiritually robust and alive. Yet many of us settle for a spiritual diet that consists of beer and pizza. While that may be good on occasion, to eat and drink that at every meal will make you sluggish, overweight, and at risk for a heart attack.
When our spiritual diet consists of snack foods (an Oprah book of the month here, a little Tony Robbins there), we might begin to feel sluggish. Our prayer life slows down. We don’t take out the trash often enough. We have just enough energy to get through a normal routine but anything out of the ordinary wears us down.
Another symptom of a poor spiritual diet is becoming overweight. We eat, eat, and eat but never exercise. Some of the most spiritually immature people I’ve known were filled with spiritual trivia. But what they had learned had never been translated into action.
Unfortunately, I’ve witnessed spiritual heart attacks that could have been avoided. When a believer exists for a prolonged period of time on a spiritual diet that isn’t nourishing their soul, their overall health becomes at risk. Arteries that were designed to carry the life-giving force of God get clogged. For the fortunate ones, the initial heart attack may not be fatal and only serve as a wake-up call. For others, the spiritual junk that is building up within them eventually leads to a massive failure. It might be in their marriage. It could be at work or with their kids.
The irony is, we know that a good, proper, balanced diet is vital to staying physically fit. Yet we continue to drift back to foods we know we shouldn’t eat.
How often do we do that in the spiritual sense? Too much, I’m afraid.
What can you do starting today to develop a healthy spiritual diet? Start with regular prayer and Bible reading. Develop a rhythm to your day and week. Rather than squeeze in your prayer and reading around the rest of your schedule try planning your schedule around your prayer time. When you do, you will become more conscious of God’s presence throughout your entire day.
Then you will be well on your way to eating right.