Thursday, January 31, 2008

Instructions For A Young Preacher #21

1 Tim. 5:23 Drink no longer water, but use a little wine for thy stomach’s sake and thine often infirmities.

Basically here Paul is instructing Timothy to take care of his health. A preacher should never neglect his physical infirmities. He should take measures to keep himself as healthy as his knowledge will allow him to do. He should exercise, not only in the things of God, but his own body. Paul tells Timothy in 1 Tim. 4:8 For bodily exercise profiteth little: but godliness is profitable unto all things, having promise of the life that now is, and of that which is to come.

Yes, bodily exercise profits little, but it does profit a little; so we should do what physical exercise that we can to keep in good health. Many Americans today do not exercise enough due to the curse of the couch and the TV. Some of us cannot exercise as much as others, so we do what we can; but we must keep a watch on our health through diet, exercise and cleanliness.

Sometimes we need a little medicine to help us. Evidently, Timothy had a stomach ailment and needed a medicinal remedy; so Paul told Timothy to take a little medicine for his stomach ailment. We are blessed today to have more and more natural products that will help ailments without having to use so many drugs. That is a blessing.

If a preacher is not healthy, he cannot give his mind completely to study, and his attitude sometimes will become sour. Many preachers do not get enough rest, and they seem to take it out on everyone but themselves. The body needs rest, and we as preachers should not feel guilty about taking that rest; neither should preachers brag about how little sleep they get to make people think they are really spiritual by overworking themselves.

A preacher, especially a pastor, never knows when he may need to get up in the early hours of the morning to make a hospital visit, take a member to the hospital, or visit a family who has just lost a baby in the night. I have had to do this many times. If we guard our sleep, our eating habits, and our spiritual fortitude, those things will be much easier than if we try to live haphazardly.

Washing your hands often is a good idea. You may even use a sanitizer to keep from spreading germs, especially if you are going from one room to another in the hospital. Keeping your fingernails clean is very important. They should also be cut short so as not to carry germs. This takes a little work, but it is worth it. It may keep you well and help keep down the spread of germs from one person to the other.

While you are at it, it would not hurt to keep your shirts clean, your suit pressed, and your shoes shined. We must make a good impression on people, telling them that our service to the Lord is important; it is not just a job. Our message is powerful, our work is important, and our impression on others may make the difference between being able to preach the Gospel to a person and being rejected. Let's give honor to God. He gave us only one body; let us not wear it out but use it for his service as long as we can. Long live the preacher, and may God give good health to our pastors, teachers, and evangelists; and while we are alive, let us give of our best to the Master.

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