On a recent commute home, I was listening to the radio (as I usually do), and the song by Casting Crowns, “Lifesong,” began to play. I have heard it many times and know most of the lyrics by heart. As I was singing along, the words resounded in my heart in a way they had not previously. Have you ever done that? A song that you’ve heard and sung a hundred times before, then suddenly one day the message strikes you with new meaning.
That’s what happened to me; it was if I were hearing these words for the first time:
May the words I say
And the things I do
Make my lifesong sing
Bring a smile to You
Let my lifesong sing to You
Let my lifesong sing to You
I want to sign Your name to the end of this day
Knowing that my heart was true
Let my lifesong sing to You
In my pattern of thoughts, I began to wonder, if I were really, really honest with myself and with God, what would be my lifesong? Would it sing joyously as an example of a good daughter, a good sister, a good youth group leader? Would it sing of Christ-like love toward others? Would it sing of surrender, sacrifice and service to God on all levels, body, spirit and soul?
I couldn’t answer an honest yes to it all, and certainly not all of the time. The fact is, we do all the right things (regular Sunday and Wednesday church attendance, prayer groups, mission groups and various other fellowship activities and events), and even manage to work in a quick devotional every morning. Is this really worship, and truly living for Him on a daily basis?
To God, why you’re doing what you’re doing is more important than what you’re doing. He wants your motivation to be out of love for Him, a desire to please Him and for Him to be glorified through your actions. We should be motivated to action because it’s important to God and not to complete a checklist. I went to church, check; ate healthy today, check; exercised today, check; said my prayers, check. If you’re doing it to mark off all the items on the list just because it’s what God says you should do, it’s wasted time.
Basically, what the song means that everything we do should be about making God happy. This includes every aspect of who you are, both physically and spiritually. If one is out of tune, the other will be also. You cannot focus only on taking care of your spirit and soul and neglect the physical body God made for you. If you do, you are not living up to the potential that God intended for you when He breathed life into you and placed you on this earth.
And, I have to say, that churches are the absolute worst when it comes to this issue. We discuss “bigger” sins and issues at length, delve deeply into them, then just barely (if ever) and briefly skim over taking care of your physical body. We then adjourn to fellowship time with sweets, chips and soft drinks. Note to my church family, I really do love all of you very much. To quote Clairee from Steel Magnolias, “You know I love you more ‘n my luggage!
I find it confusing that we sit in church on Sunday morning, listen to the sermons and readily accept and acknowledge that we fall short when it comes to loving others, being judgmental, service, faith and a host of other character shortcomings. But almost nothing will raise a person’s defenses as quickly as the issue of neglecting the gift of the physical body God gave you. Nobody likes to talk about it, and we just don’t take it as seriously as we should. However, God not only expects us to take care of ourselves by eating healthily and exercising, He commands us to do so. Consider Colossians 3:17:
And whatever you do, whether in word or deed, do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through Him.
Notice it reads whatever you do, meaning all that you do, and that includes eating right and exercising. The verse doesn’t give you a checklist to follow, because there isn’t one. Everything you do should be done in His name. Choosing not to do so is, quite simply, is choosing to disobey God.
Please understand that this is not intended as a holier-than-thou message or to imply that I am perfect. I am in the boat with everyone else. I am no better than anyone else. But God allowed me to go through alcoholism, gluttony, an immoral lifestyle and a host of other sins against my own body, then redeemed me from it and allowed me to keep good health despite the way I neglected my health and took it for granted. The purpose was so He would be glorified and allow me to show others His love by leading them on a path to a more perfect walk with Him by getting all of you in sync – body, spirit and soul.
If your lifesong were to sing out loud to others right now, what would it be singing? Would your spouse, your children, grandchildren, family and anyone else hear the song of your righteous, healthy living and see you setting the example? Your lifestyle is a witness to everyone you come in contact with.
If your lifesong were to sing out loud to God right now, would it be a joyful song? Would it be full of the happiness that can only come when all of you, your body, spirit and soul are in tune with Him?
If you haven’t given every part of yourself to Him and are clinging on to something that is not pleasing to Him, it’s never too late! You can submit and dedicate your entire being to Him right now, wherever you are, whatever you’re doing. Don’t waste another minute of your precious time here on earth holding on to those things that will always hinder your walk with Him. He loves you so much and is just waiting to sing your joyous lifesong with you!
Scripture: Psalm 104:33
I will sing to the Lord all my life; I will sing praise to my God as long as I live.”
Prayer: Father God, I am so humbled by Your love for me. I am constantly amazed at the wonder of Your miraculous hand over my life, and there is a new song to sing every day because You show me Your power and presence. In knowing Christ, my song of joy and deliverance is for a lifetime. You refresh me and give me a new song. Let my lifesong sing to You!
Follow this link to listen to Lifesong by Casting Crowns