Meditation Monday

There are multiple reasons why many are sick today. Diet, lack of exercise, and genetics play important roles in health, but one overlook area to health is our thoughts and emotions. What one thinks and speaks does matter. The bible tells us that as a man thinks so he is in his heart (Proverbs 23:7) and out of the fullness (superabundance) of the heart the mouth speaks (Matthew 12:34). The things of this world are temporal or temporary, but there is a Kingdom that is eternal. There is also a King that has come and will come again to establish His Kingdom on earth-King Jesus. This week, instead of mediating on the things of the world, shift your focus to Jesus and His Kingdom. His Kingdom is full of grace and filled with the abundance of life. He has loved you from the foundation of the world and wants to give you life and life more abundantly. The scripture for this week is John 10:9-11. As you read it, take one or two words from the scripture, and intentionally think and speak those words throughout the day and throughout the week. Changing your thoughts will change your life!

John 10: 9-11 I am the Gateway. To enter through me is to experience life, freedom, and satisfaction. A thief has only one thing in mind-he wants to steal, slaughter, and destroy. But I have come to give you everything in abundance, more than you expect-life in its fullness until you overflow!

The Power of Rumination: Good or Bad

Rumination is a process of thinking on something repeatedly or in deep contemplation. The brain is an amazing organ, and like the rest of our body, it has an innate ability to heal itself. Functional brain scans have revealed that negative rumination can actually hurt the brain. People who focus on negative things about life, and or themselves, have an increase in amygdala activity where fearful thoughts. are generated. Fearful or even angry rumination releases negative neurotransmitters that have a negative effect on the brain and the body. The wonderful thing is that a person can choose what they ruminate on. Choosing to think positive faith-based thoughts actually improve health and strengthen neurological circuits. Studies have shown that mediating on love strengthens areas of the brain that increase our compacity to express compassion towards others. (Newburg et al, 2010). 1 John 4:16 tells us that God is love. Focusing on God’s love for us is key to a healthy mind and body. In contrast, religious practices that focus on fear may actually hurt the anterior cingulate area of the brain, and cause people to be less compassionate and more aggressive towards others (Newburg et al, 2010). 1 John 4:18 states that this is no fear in love but perfect love (God’s love) drives fear out because fear has to do with punishment. In Christ, the believer is free from punishment and adopted as a child of God. Focusing on God’s love revealed through His son, will set the believer free from condemnation and fear. The fear of the Lord is a worshipful fear of admiration and awe. He is all powerful. He is all light and there is no darkness within Him. In Him is life more abundantly. Meditation (selective attention) is a powerful tool to help heal the brain. Studies have revealed that the daily practice of meditation helps improve working memory (Newburg et al, 2010). Furthermore, mediation increases IL-10 an anti-inflammatory cytokine and decreases inflammatory cytokines IL-6 and TNF alpha. Inflammation is at the root of all illness so mediation has health benefits. Fearful meditation, or evil foreboding, releases stress neurotransmitters involved in the flight or fight response. These stress neurotransmitters increase cortisol. A chronic state of flight or fight response causes chronic elevations in cortisol that can increase weight gain and suppress the immune system. A suppressed immune system makes us more susceptible to illness. High cortisol levels have a negative affect on DHEA which is important for the productions of hormones and immune function.

Our thoughts have power. We can choose life producing thoughts or thoughts that will bring death. Mediation was always God’s plan for us to live life to the fullest. Scripture tells us to take wrong thoughts captive and to think on things above. In other words, we must choose to think Kingdom thoughts. God’s thoughts are good towards His children. He has great plans His children. The problem is that people do not understand how much God’s loves them. Religion makes God out to be angry and just waiting to punish all humanity. Religion tells people you have to follow all the rules or you will be punished. The truth is that in Christ, we are made righteous not based on works or following rules ,but by faith in Jesus Christ. It His love for us and His grace that empower us to desire to know Him and to follow his ways. We love Him because He first loved us. Jesus came to save the world not condemn it.

What are you ruminating on today? Is it bringing life to you or death? Start today ruminating on God’s love for you. It will heal your mind and bring health to your body. Think life and speak life! Right believing about God and who you are in Him will bring such peace and joy!

1 John 4:16 (The Message) This is how we know we’re living steadily and deeply in him, and he in us: He’s given us life from his life, from his very own Spirit. Also, we’ve seen for ourselves and continue to state openly that the Father sent his Son as Savior of the world. Everyone who confesses that Jesus is God’s Son participates continuously in an intimate relationship with God. We know it so well, we’ve embraced it heart and soul, this love that comes from God.

1 John 4:16 (NKJV) And we have known and believed the love that God has for us. God is love, and he who abides in love abides in God, and God in him.

Reference

Newberg, A. B., & Mark Robert Waldman. (2010). How God changes your brain : breakthrough findings from a leading neuroscientist. Ballantine Books Trade Paperbacks.

Pondering Love

Examining what we focus our thoughts on may reveal areas in which have become idols or strongholds.

To the followers of Yahweh, a stronghold is any area in our thinking that is not in line with the truth of God’s Word and who we are in Him. An idol is anything that we put more faith in than we do the power and goodness of our Heavenly Father. For example, I had a stronghold in the belief that God was an angry and just waiting to punish me. The wonderful truth is that those who believe in Jesus have been made righteous by His blood, and have become children of the Most High God. My fear of punishment did not line up with the Word of Yahweh. 1 John 4:18 states that love never brings fear, for fear is always related to punishment, but His perfect love drives the fear of punishment far from our hearts. Thinking and mediating on His love will bring freedom from fear.

Idols are just not just figures of animals or people that are worship or pray too, but are things, people, and or circumstances that take more precedence in our lives than Yahweh. An example, an idol in my life was food. I used food like someone would use alcohol. I turned to food to calm my anxiety, instead of turning to Yahweh, who has promised peace and security. Running to food first instead of seeking Yahweh’s rest, was affecting my health and did not bring lasting peace. The breaking down of wrong belief systems and idols in our lives begins with trusting our Creator, who has made us and wants to see us prosper and be in health. Where do you focus your thoughts? Are they producing more fear or despair? I encourage you today to go to the Father, and ask Him to reveal His love for you. He is very very good and He loves you.

For as he thinks in his heart, so is he. Proverbs 23:7

You will keep him in perfect peace, Whose mind is stayed on You, Because he trusts in You. Isaiah 26:3

Gratitude and Praise: Rewiring the Brain and Healing the Soul

Proverbs 17:22 A happy heart is good medicine and a cheerful mind works healing, but a broken spirit dries up the bones.

We are living in unprecedent times. Now more than ever, we need to learn how to navigate these times in order to live healthy and happy lives. I do believe, even with all the uncertainty of today, we can prosper and be in good health. Our emotional health is closely linked to our physical health with diet and exercise playing key roles. We need Wisdom from above if we are going to thrive in the days ahead. A healthy immune system is key to staying well and living a long life. Our immune system takes care of invaders often without our knowledge. Unfortunately, stress, diet, and unhealthy emotions (thoughts) can damage our immune system and our brain neurons, affecting our general health. One can google “health” and immediately be bombarded with health information. There are all kinds of diets, supplements, and exercise programs, but I believe true health begins in the secret place of the Most High.

As you are aware, a new COVID-19 variant, Omicron, has surfaced in the world. With all our advances in medicine, we have not been able to stop this virus. On top of this, many diseases such as cancer, diabetes, Alzheimer’s and heart disease, are increasing. All of these diseases have a common link-diet and stress. I have been in prayer asking the Lord how to help people navigate the times we are in. Recently, the Holy Spirit spoke these words to me:

Gratitude and praise (worship) is the key to navigating these times.

Studies have shown that gratitude has a positive effect on the brain and the body. Gratitude release dopamine and serotonin, neurotransmitters that produce feelings of well being and pleasure. Studies have revealed that writing down the things that we are grateful for on a regular basis has a positive effect on our mental and physical health. A blog post by the Aspen Brain Institute reports one study that said this:

“Studies have indicated that people who feel more grateful to Him, are healthier and stress resilient in life (Krause, 2006). An experiment conducted on three groups of individuals, each team representing a particular age-group, revealed that older men and women felt more grateful to God for their lives, and scored a high stress-tolerance index than others.” https://aspenbraininstitute.org/blog-posts/gratitudeandthebrain

God has truly, fearfully and wonderfully made us. More and more scientist are discovering the power of our thoughts and their effect on our health. Choosing to focusing our mind on things that we are grateful for rewires the brain and helps lower anxiety and depression. Meditation and prayer (praise and worship) are keys to transforming our mind and healing our soul. Dr. Andrew Newburg found this to be true in his study of prayer and meditation and the effect on the brain. He states in his book, How God Changes Your Brain, that meditation and prayer strengthen neural pathways and have a calming effect on the body. His work also revealed that meditation and prayer improved cognitive function, reduced the signs of aging, and improved the immune system. In other words, it is the transformed mind that will bring change in our lives. I am speaking of health, happiness, and peace that surpasses our surrounding circumstances. It is the attitude of gratefulness and the willingness to praise Him even in the storm that will guide us through the coming times. Let these words penetrate deep in you soul:

Psalm 34:5 Gaze upon Him, join your life to His and joy will come. Your faces will glisten with glory. You’ll never wear that shame-face again.

It’s time to change our minds for the better. It’s times to examine our hearts and minds with the help of the Holy Spirit. It’s time to examine what we believe and to align ourselves with the truth of God’s Word and who we are in Christ. As born again believers, we are carriers of the good news of the resurrected life in Christ. It’s time to gather up our oil for this season. What “gather up our oil” means to me, is that it is time to go to the “secret place”, gazing upon Him our King, and allow Him to heal our heart and renew our minds. It’s a time to allow Him to mend our broken hearts. Many people have experienced discouragement, financial loss, loss of loved ones, rejection, and hopelessness. We need to be refreshed and filled up again with the precious oil of His Presence. It is inner peace and rest that will bring health and healing to our lives. This peace is found in Him, the Prince of Peace. Gratitude and praise is key to being healthy in mind, body and spirit.

Western Diet causes Intestinal Cell Dysfunction affecting innate immunity

More and more studies are pointing to the gut and gut dysbiosis as a key to chronic disease. Lui et al 2021 found in their study in mice, that a western diet caused Paneth cell dysfunction in just four weeks. Paneth cells are intestinal cells in the small intestines that are important in managing innate immunity. In other words, the Standard Western Diet, which is high in fat and sugar, caused these cells not to perform as they should increasing the risk of disease. Obesity is closely linked to Paneth cell dysfunction and a suppressed immune system. The gut microbiota also plays a role in this dysfunction. The Standard Western Diet causes Clostridium (bacteria in the gut) to convert deoxycholic acid which initiates inflammatory pathways. The good news is that Paneth cell dysfunction was found to be reversible in mice (Lui et al., 2021, Cell Host & Microbe 29, 1-14 June 9, 2021).

In light of the current pandemic, a healthy immune system is paramount. Poor diet, lack of exercise, obesity, chronic disease, and stress are key factors to a suppressed immune system. Furthermore, though antibiotics are useful in treating infections, their overuse is leading to dysbiosis and the production of free radials that can damage healthy cells. Interestingly, obesity and diabetes have been linked to low Clostridium in the gut. Stress also causes gut dysbiosis and suppressed immune system. There is no doubt that our physical health is closely linked to our emotional health.

Proverbs 17:22 (amp) A happy heart is good medicine and a cheerful mind works healing, but a broken spirit dries up the bones.

Proverbs 17:22 (TPT) A joyful, cheerful heart brings healing to both body and soul. But the one whose heart is crushed struggles with sickness and depression.

Proverbs 17:22 holds important keys to living a healthy life. A joyful and happy heart and mind leads to healing of the body and soul. There is one who is able to restore us to wholeness. His name is Jesus, and those who call on Him will find rest for their souls and healing of their broken hearts. Jesus came to heal the broken-hearted and bind up their wounds (Psalm147:3). I can tell you how to get heathy with diet, exercise, supplements , and positive meditation but this would not be the most important to share with you. Each person is a divinely created. God has put eternity into every living being. His desire is to make us whole again restoring us to our original states. In Acts 3:21, the word restoration is used. The Greek word is apokatastasis which means restoration to perfect health. In other words, Jesus is restoring creation to it’s state before to fall. True health is found in Him. The Kingdom of God is spiritual and not political. Jesus said, “Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls.  For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.” Jesus knows what you need and how to help you reign in this life. he cares about every aspect of your life even helping you eat better and exercise. Run to Him and he will bind up your wounds and give you rest.

Romans 5:17  For if because of one man’s trespass (lapse, offense) death reigned through that one, much more surely will those who receive God’s overflowing grace (unmerited favor) and the free gift of righteousness [putting them into right standing with Himself] reign as kings in life through the one Man Jesus Christ (the Messiah, the Anointed One). This is great news.

There is Treatment for COVID-19

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I am still amazed at how many healthcare providers tell patients that there is no treatment for COVID-19, sending them home with no treatment or education on treatment options. Mild COVID-19 symptoms can be treated at home with supportive supplements like vitamin D, zinc, famotidine, and quercetin. Inhaled steroids, like budesonide, are very effective when started early. People who have other disease processes like obesity, autoimmune disease, high blood pressure, and DM are candidates for IV infusion of monoclonal antibodies for treatment of COVID-19. Monoclonal antibodies are very effective if given within the first 10 days of illness, but earlier in the disease process is better.. Monoclonal antibody infusion has been opened up to COVID-19 patients ages 18 and over. Unfortunately, there still is a criteria that has to be meet before the infusion can be given. I personally think that monoclonal antibody treatment should be open to anyone who would like to have it. They work that well. Another off label treatment for COVID-19 is ivermectin. Ivermectin is being used by Integrative Practitioners, including myself, with seemingly good results. I don’t recommend taking ivermectin from your local Co-Op store but getting it from a reputable compounding pharmacy. Ivermectin given early may help fight COVID-19 and some are taking ivermectin 1 or 2 times a week as a preventative. There are currently no large studies on the use of ivermectin, but preliminary studies suggest it works against severe pulmonary effects of COVID-19 (A five-day course of ivermectin for the treatment of COVID-19 may reduce the duration of illness – PubMed (nih.gov).

COVID-19 is a real disease that has taken many lives including my father, Dr. Robert Elliott. He was an 84 year old physician and researcher. He was a dedicated physician who got up everyday at 4 am, worked all day, and was working on exciting research involving mitochondria and neuromuscular diseases. He started having gastrointestinal symptoms which he had often from irritable bowel. He did not take advice and get tested for COVID-19 until around 10 days of being ill. He did not go to the hospital until his oxygen was in the 70s. COVID-19 in some patients elicit an immune response that we call a “cytokine storm”. In other words, our own immune system becomes our enemy and causes damage to tissues like the lungs. Once a person is in this “cytokine storm” the only real treat is dexamethasone and supportive care. I do believe that if my father had gotten tested early and had monoclonal antibodies, he would be here today. I also believe that if he had had the COVID-19 vaccine, he would still be alive. He was a man of faith and did not fear COVID-19, but COVID-19 ended up taking his life. To my Christian brothers and sisters, I urge you to pray about the vaccine and weather it is right for you. Fear is not our prophet and this kind of fear does not come from God. God is not the author of confusion. John 10:10 states clearly that it is the enemy who comes to steal, kill and destroy, but Jesus came to give us life more abundantly. Fear brings with it torment. James 3:17 tells us: But the wisdom from above is first of all pure (undefiled); then it is peace-loving, courteous (considerate, gentle). [It is willing to] yield to reason, full of compassion and good fruits; it is wholehearted and straightforward, impartial and unfeigned (free from doubts, wavering, and insincerity). Let peace be your guide and let’s honor each other.

My point is this: COVID-19 is real disease and early diagnosis and treatment is key. If you choose not to vaccinate, then please get tested early and protect your family, friends and neighbors by quarantining yourself. Also seek the advice of a medical professional about getting the monoclonal antibodies or the use of ivermectin. If you are 65 years old or older with or without medical issues, consider getting the COVID-19 vaccine. First and foremost, pray, asking God to lead you in the way that is best for you. We, believers in Christ, should be lead by the Spirit not by fear. The fruit of the spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, meekness, self-control. Let’s seek the Wisdom from above and not partner with a spirit of fear.

Increase your Tregs!

What are Tregs you might be asking? Tregs are regulatory T cells that help reduce inflammation in the body by releasing anti-inflammatory cytokines like IL-10 and transforming growth factor beta. Tregs help maintain the balance of our immune system, keeping it from over-acting to various stimuli. Peripheral Tregs are specialized cell that are located in our small and large intestines. It is believed that dysregulation of Tregs may lead to autoimmune disease. Our immune and emotional systems mirror each other and are active and ever changing. Studies have revealed an increase in emotional disorders in people with autoimmune diseases. The reverse is true, an increase in immune disorders have been seen in people with emotional disorders.

The health of our immune system is closely linked to our emotional health. The good news is that both our immune and emotional system have the ability to change and adjust according to external factors and living conditions. This means that with the right support these system can improve. We know from studies that a healthier diet and stable emotions improve both system. We also know that stopping unhealthy habits like smoking and drinking alcohol can benefit the both of these systems. In other words, improving our emotional health will help reduce inflammation in our body. Below is a chart from https://www.affectiveimmunology.com/ showing how our emotions affect our immune system.

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Moods impact the immune, nervous and endocrine systems and vise versa. The gut microbiome also impacts the immune, nervous, and endocrine systems and vice versa. The best way to support Tregs is through good nutrition and emotional health. A good diet supports healthy gut bacteria where as our Standard American Diet does not. Foods like wheat, dairy, and corn are food based opioids or exorphins which increase food additions.

Our emotional well-being is another very import piece to health that is often over-looked. I was not surprised that traumatic stress can cause c-reactive protein or CRP to be elevated as much as 20 years later. CRP is a protein that can be measured in the blood and is an indicator of inflammation in the body. I see the effects of traumatic stress in my practice daily.

So how do we increase our Tregs to reduce inflammation? Improving our gut and emotional health is a good place to start. A low inflammatory diet, such as the Mediterranean diet, reduces inflammation and helps restore healthy gut bacteria. I also recommend taking a probiotic and learning about foods we call pre-biotics. Pre-biotic foods included walnuts, asparagus, bananas, legumes, onion and garlic. Fermented foods like kombucha, Kimchi, and sauerkraut are also pre-biotic foods that promote healthy gut bacteria. High-fiber foods, such as fruits, veggies, legumes and whole grains, encourage the production of short-chain fatty acids which improve gut health and reduce inflammation. Vitamin D3 and Vitamin A are also important to gut health. Vitamin D is important in the lining of the gut and increases Treg activity promoting a healthy immune system. Studies have also shown that men and women who take vitamin D have less risk of colon cancer. Vitamin D is also recommended for prophylaxis against COVID-19 along with Vitamin C, zinc, and Quercetin. Niacin (B3) is another important vitamin that is found in lean meats like fish, beef, chicken, and turkey.  Many legumesnuts, and seeds provide a source of niacin.

Emotional health is a very deep subject and there is no way to really address it fully here. Life throws us curve balls sometimes that can leave us with emotional wounds. People with Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder show a decrease in regulatory T cell activity, which may explain why they are more susceptible to infections and autoimmune diseases. Furthermore, childhood trauma, like abuse and neglect, have been linked to physical and mental health issues in adults. Childhood trauma has also been linked to chronic illness, premature death , and aging. You can read more on this subject in Neuroscience News at: https://neurosciencenews.com/child-trauma-adult-mental-health-18318/

Emotional healing is an important key to physical health. In other word, emotional healing leads to a healthier body. We have all experienced negative emotions and their negative affects. These physical manifestations include chest tightness, stomach upset, head aches, fatigue, muscle pain, and diarrhea just to name a few. Interestingly, medical studies have shown that exercise, meditation, and singing improve emotional and physical health. Meditation increases IL-10 an anti-inflammatory cytokine and decreases inflammatory cytokines IL-6, IL-8, and TNF alpha. Music therapy, active singing and passive listening, increases anti-inflammatory cytokine IL-4 and IL-10 and decreases cortisol levels. Exercise also decreases cortisol and inflammatory cytokine IL-6 and TNF alpha. Cortisol is released from the adrenal glands during stress. Prolonged stress can raise cortisol levels promoting weight gain and suppressing the immune system making us more susceptible to illness and chronic disease. High cortisol levels decrease DHEA. DHEA is an endogenous steroid produced by the adrenal glands and is important in the synthesis of hormones. DHEA is also important in immune health.

Meditation and singing (prayer and worship) is God’s design for physical and mental health. I am reminded of the story of Paul and Silas in the prison. They were chained in prison, but as they prayed and sang hymns to God, an earthquake shook the foundation of the jail and everyone’s door was open and their chains fell off. Prayer and worship opens the door to communion with the Spirit of Jesus and breaks the chains that hold us down. We are a three part being- body, soul, and spirit. Our spirit is the eternal part of us, and I believe it longs to be at rest or at peace. This rest or peace is found in Christ.

Proverb 14:30 a calm and undisturbed mind and heart are the life and health of the body, but envy, jealousy, and wrath are like rottenness of the bones.

The bones are where our immune system and blood cells are made, but in scripture, bones are also are a metaphor for our inner being. Our inner thought life and condition of our heart (emotions) is vital to living a healthy full life. Unhealthy emotions can hurt us physically and mentally. The good news is that Jesus came to heal the broken hearted and to set the captives free (Isaiah 61:1).

The desire of us all is to be loved. God is love and there is no darkness in Him. He is nothing but love. He is the creator of the universe who created us in His image in love. It was love that drew Jesus to the cross. God Himself was in Christ reconciling the world to Himself:

It was God [personally present] in Christ, reconciling and restoring the world to favor with Himself, not counting up and holding against [men] their trespasses [but cancelling them], and committing to us the message of reconciliation (of the restoration to favor). 2 Corinthians 5:19

God is not trying to take us out of this world but is wanting to reveal to us our true identity in Him, in Christ. Jesus has told us to come to Him and He will give us rest. He said join with Him and learn from Him for He is gentle and humble in heart, and we will find rest for our souls. Are you weary and burdened today? Is your inner being in turmoil? Are you sick emotionally and physically? If so, their is one who can give you rest and peace-Jesus.

Discerning the Lord’s Body

What does discerning the Lord’s body actually mean? As I ponders this thought, several things come to my mind. Before discussing my thoughts, let’s review the story in 1 Corinthians. In 1 Corinthians 11, Paul tells us that many believers are weak and sickly and many have fallen into the sleep of death for not discerning the Lord’s body. Paul expressed concern about how the believers in Christ were coming together to share a meal. It seems that cliques (divisions and factions) had sprung up between them. Some were eating and drinking and getting drunk while others had nothing. There was an economic divide and the wealthy were not considering those who had nothing. Paul states that this careless and unworthy participation is the reason many were weak, chronically ill, and some are dying.

Now I know this is a deep subject but bare with me. My heart here is to not bring any condemnation but to remind us the power revealed in the breaking of the bread and the drinking of the cup of the Lord. Let’s review the revelation that Paul gave to us:

 For I received from the Lord Himself that which I passed on to you [it was given to me personally], that the Lord Jesus on the night when He was treacherously delivered up and while His betrayal was in progress took bread, And when He had given thanks, He broke [it] and said, Take, eat. This is My body, which is broken for you. Do this to call Me [affectionately] to remembrance. Similarly when supper was ended, He took the cup also, saying, This cup is the new covenant [ratified and established] in My blood. Do this, as often as you drink [it], to call Me [affectionately] to remembrance. For every time you eat this bread and drink this cup, you are representing and signifying and proclaiming the fact of the Lord’s death until He comes [again]. 1 Corinthians 11:23-26

I believe the Lord’s body can represent three concepts: Christ physical body, His body the church, and each individual believer. Christ’s body was torn, battered, and bruised for our transgression so that “by His stripes we can be healed”(Isaiah 53:5). Remembering this event, honoring His death, and recognizing His shed blood, forever paid the price for our sins re-establishing us as sons and daughters. This gift of righteousness is for all who will believe no matter the person age, gender, economic status, or color of their skin. His free gift of righteousness is even for the murderer, sex offender, outcast of society, disabled, addicted, or demon possessed. And yes, His free gift of righteousness is for the Hindu, the Muslim, the New Ager, the Wiccan, and the Buddhist. His love, revealed in His death and resurrection, is for ALL.

Discerning His body rightly, will bring health to the body (church, individual believer). Maybe we are sick and weak, because we have not learn to honor the Christ in ourselves and in others. Today, we see the same cliques (division and fractions) in our nation and in the church as Paul describes in 1 Corinthians 11. Love is the greatest healing force in the world. Loving our neighbor as ourselves is one key to healing our nation and each other. There is healing in the body and blood of Jesus: physically, emotionally, and corporately. We can’t truly love others until we understand the love shown for us at the cross. We must first understand how loved we are by the Father, and that He Himself was in Christ, reconciling the world to Himself. Let’s us remember the price Jesus paid for our healing by remembering His death and resurrection through the breaking of the bread and the drinking of the cup. True, complete healing, starts at the feet of Jesus. Let Him make you whole. His peace he will give you. Shalom is a fascinating word. I will leave you with the definition. Peace be with you!

Shalom is a Hebrew word meaning peace, harmony, wholeness, completeness, prosperity, welfare and tranquility.

Inner Beauty: A Spirit at Rest and Health to the Body

But let it be the inward adorning and beauty of the hidden person of the heart, with the incorruptible and unfading charm of a gentle and peaceful spirit, which [is not anxious or wrought up, but] is very precious in the sight of God. 1 Peter 3:4

So often, we spend more time and energy on how we look on the outside, instead of paying attention to our inner beauty. More and more scientific studies are linking our emotional health, and inner thought life, to physical health. Stress, unhealthy diet, and unhealthy emotions can definitely age us faster.

In a book called the Telomere Effect, two researcher confirmed that, stress and unhealthy diet, accelerated cell division and cell death. Telomeres (noncoding DNA) are caps on the ends of our chromosomes that keep our genetic material from unraveling. Telomeres shorten with each cell division and determine how quickly our cells age and die. Old cells are called senescent cells. Senescent cells are tired and worn out. Senescent cells produce inflammatory substances that can increase pain and make us more susceptible to chronic illness. Telomeres do not follow a pre-programed genetic code, but are listening to us. In other words, telomeres respond to internal and external stimuli. If we are stressed and worried, eating an unhealthy diet, and not exercising, our telomeres divide faster causing our cells to get age faster. The converse is true, if we are at peace, eating a healthy diet, and exercising, our telomere length is longer and our cells live longer.

“The foods you eat, your response to emotional challenges, the amount of exercise you get, whether you were exposed to childhood stress, and even the level of trust and safety in your neighborhood-all of these factors and more appear to influence your telomeres and can prevent pre-mature aging at the cellular level. In short, one of the keys to a long healthspan is simply doing our part to foster healthy cell renewal.” The Telomere Effect, pg 7.

Telomerase is an enzyme that replenishes the telomeres by restoring the DNA lost during cell division. The telomerase renews the telomeres. So to sum things up, longer telomeres and more telomerase slow the cellular aging process ,whereas less telomerase speeds up the cellular aging. Studies have shown that the more stressed you are, the shorter your telomere length, and lower your telomerase level. Through the work of Dr. Blackburn and Dr. Epel, we have learned that we can have an impact on changing the length of our telomeres by our life experiences, and how we respond to those experiences.

Inner peace and joy are just as key to a healthy life as reducing stress, eating a healthy diet, and exercising. There is nothing wrong with trying to look our best, but paying attention to our inner beauty will bring true health and happiness. We are living in very stressful times. Many are struggling with their health physically and mentally. Many factors are involved in being healthy in mind, body and spirit, and yes they are connected.

Beloved, I pray that you may prosper in every way and [that your body] may keep well, even as [I know] your soul keeps well and prospers. 3John 1:2

The song that has been on my heart all week is the song by Cody Carnes-Run to the Father. The Creator of the Universe knows what we need. He is a good Father and nothing but good. He is love and there is no darkness in Him. He created us and loves us perfectly. Learning and believing that God loved me, began my journey of healing in mind, body, and spirit. His love has been shed abroad in my heart through the Holy Spirit (Romans 5:5). His love is like no other. He is not angry but is standing with arms wide open to welcome us into His presence. It is in His presence, that we can experience true love and acceptance, and healing for our body and soul. Run to the Father, and ask Him about your health. Ask Him to show you His love for you. Call out to Him and he will answer you and show you great and mighty things, fenced in and hidden, which you do not know (do not distinguish and recognize, have knowledge of and understand). Jeremiah 33:3

I will leave you with a few scripture to meditate on today, as well as the YouTube video of the song, Run to the Father. In the days to come, I will be writing more about gut health, and it’s affects on our physical and mental health. Be blessed! You are greatly loved.

Do not fret or have any anxiety about anything, but in every circumstance and in everything, by prayer and petition (definite requests), with thanksgiving, continue to make your wants known to God. Philippians 4:6

In the multitude of my [anxious] thoughts within me, Your comforts cheer and delight my soul! Psalms 94:19

For Such A Time as This!

And in the days of these [final ten] kings shall the God of heaven set up a kingdom which shall never be destroyed, nor shall its sovereignty be left to another people; but it shall break and crush and consume all these kingdoms and it shall stand forever. Daniel 2

This morning (October 13th) in my prayer time, I felt a nudge from the Holy Spirit to go to chapter 2 of the book of Daniel. I have been asking Abba to reveal to me the deep and secret things, for He knows what is in the darkness and the light dwells with Him (Daniel 2:20-22). I believe this is what He said:

I AM establishing a kingdom within each believer (Luke 17:21) that can not be shaken or destroyed. A time is coming of great upheaval and grace. The evil one is plotting more destruction, and there are those who will partner with him, but I have a greater army and the victory is mine, says the Lord.”

Great is My Glory among the nations who seek Me and My ways. I AM looking for a people, who will love Me and follow Me without hypocrisy. You (all my believers) are among those who I AM establishing as My pioneers to a new era, for such a time as this, for such a time as this!

I asked the Lord, “What is this upheaval”? The Spirit of the Lord said, “Strife, unprecedented strife among the people and this nation, but I will resolve it all in My people. They will arise and shine in this new era. I AM preparing my army. My people, who will not turn back or be afraid, but will shine in the darkness in this day and this hour. Be not afraid of the days ahead, for I have already won the battle for you and My people. My people are blessed and prosperous, a people stable and fixed, strong in mind and spirit.