Every 3,000 - 5,000 miles.
Can you guess what is supposed to happen during the mileage mentioned? My vehicle is supposed to receive an oil change. I am aware of the need for an oil change because there is a screen in my vehicle that states “Maintenance Recommended”. There is also a sticker in the top left corner of my windshield stating the exact mileage an oil change is recommended.
An oil change is important for the life of a vehicle because new, fresh oil is essential for lubricating the engine and absorbing engine heat. Do I always follow the 3,000 - 5,000 miles recommended oil change? No, but as my schedule allows, I adhere to what the experts suggest and begin making the necessary arrangements once I approach the 3,000 - 5,000 mark.
Paul writes in First Corinthians 6:19-20 that our “bodies are temples of the Holy Spirit” and he finishes the section with these words, “Therefore honor God with your bodies”. If our body is a temple of the Holy Spirit and we are to honor God with our body, then we honor God when we take care of the temple He has given us.
Let’s go back to my vehicle for a moment. What will happen when I do not take proper care of my vehicle? I will start to see the signs of a major problem - and suddenly, the vehicle will break down. When we do not honor God with our body by taking care of the temple He’s given us, we will start seeing the signs: fatigue, apathy about ministry opportunities, neglecting prayer and suddenly, you will ‘break down’. Within ministry circles, it’s called “Burn Out”.
I am aware the busyness of ministry takes its toll on our weekly to-do lists and self care drops off the list. However, just like the mechanic has given you reminders to maintain your vehicle, you also need reminders of self-care. Make an appointment with yourself - to go for a 30 minute walk three days next week. Make an appointment with yourself - to read a leadership book for 30 minutes before you leave for the day.
Yes, interruptions will happen and when they do, shift your self-care appointment to the next open day available. Guard these appointments and also communicate these appointments with others around you. You’re not selfish when you seek to honor God with your body. You may actually lead others toward self-care. Prayerfully consider how you can honor God with the temple He has given you.
In what ways are you lacking in self-care (lack of sleep, exercise, diet, etc.)? What stops you from honoring God with your body? How do you honor God with your body? What routines do you have in place that could possibly help others? Share your thoughts in the comments below.