Excerpts from Chapters 6, 7 and 8
Jesus gave us enough examples of mercy to challenge us for a lifetime.
Jesus calls all who follow him to demonstrate the same priority of healing the whole person, body-and-spirit, that he showed. He asks us to care about what he cares about – wellness and wholeness.
A congregational health ministry does not require medical professionals in the congregation.
Each of us can help others pursue wellness in their own lives because God created them body-and-spirit. That is the healing presence of the gospel, God’s kingdom power at work in real lives.
How can you be a healing presence in someone’s life?
A regular experience from stepping back [from life] nourishes [our] connection to God and restores wellness to body-and-spirit.
I no longer see health as the mere absence of disease. Health is built around community and grounded in the spiritual life that embraces the physical bodies God gives us. Instead of the absence of disease, I see health as the presence of those elements that lead us to joy and love and drive us closer to God. Living longer is not the goal for a healthy life. Rather, loving fully, with all our capacity, will define a well-lived life.
One theme of Morris in these chapters is that believers have a responsibility to care for the well being of other human beings, just as Jesus cared for the well being of those he ministered to while he walked the earth. Each of us, whether we are health professionals or not, are able to be “wellness ministers” to others by simply caring for their souls. When we care deeply and genuinely for others who are on the receiving end of that care, we are being “wellness ministers” to them.
Imagine the impact that your church could have if this was an intentional and organized effort. Part of what the Church Health Center in Memphis, TN does is to teach and equip churches to be able to care for people. They train people to become Congregational Health Promoters. It really isn’t rocket science. All it takes is a decision and a commitment to have such a ministry in your church.
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