Summary: Healthful Living
Keep your Head on!
“Just imagine yourself in Barbados!” - Where there is never a dull moment. These are two of the most familiar taglines on advertisements put out by the Barbados Tourism Authority to the world. The posters depict a beautiful blue ocean and white sandy beaches with a gorgeous couple lying on a hammock in the shade of a palm tree’s fronds. The ideas conveyed are that there are no problems in Barbados, that life is sweet and dandy – just like the Mauby Syrup, and that Barbados is the closest thing to paradise on this side of heaven. Tourists come and they just wish that they could spend the rest of their lives in beautiful, beautiful Barbados – the gem of the Caribbean Sea. Everyone in Barbados must be happy right?
However for many persons living on this beautiful island, including many of you in this congregation this morning, nothing could be further from the truth. The fact is that for many persons there are more problems than we know what to do with; life is hard and wearisome every single day. It is only through the mercies of God that we’ve made it this far. The popular song put it this way, “I almost gave up, I felt like I just couldn’t take life anymore. My problems had me bound, depression weighed me down,” but when we were in that state it was then that “God held us close so that we didn’t let go.” Someone must know what I am talking about!
I know also for a fact, that these experiences do not only belong to persons who are worldly, unspiritual or have no relationship with the Lord. Depression, anxiety, stress, grief, insecurity, regret are all emotions experienced by members of the church as well -what’s intriguing is that the stress is often concealed- especially in our church. We look happy, we smell good, we’re wearing clothes bought on a recent shopping trip to Miami but under the façade we’re hurting and feel like there is no one to help and no way out of our situation. It also doesn’t matter whether the person is a man or a woman. Men would like to portray that tough, macho exterior in order to suggest that nothing bothers them, nothing hurts their feelings, they don’t cry and what’s more they don’t even care but nothing could be further from the truth. Whether we are male or female, we experience threats to our emotional and mental health.
Sometimes these threats can be so great that they prevent us from being able to function. The depressed or worried person can be so crippled by his or her condition that he or she remains home, or if at work, is unable to free the mind for even long enough to be able to accomplish anything at the job. What’s even more is that the person who is mentally unwell may even have difficulty worshipping God freely and sincerely. In the book “Healthful Living on page 54, Sis White makes the following statements: “A diseased body affects the brain. With the mind we serve the Lord. All should guard the senses, lest Satan gain victory over them; for these are the avenues to the soul.”