1 Corinthians 6:19-20: “Do you not know that your body is a temple to the Holy Spirit, who is in you, whom you have received from God? You are not your own, you were bought with a price. Therefore, honor God with your body.”
Our bodies are a temple. We were created with one focus in mind: to worship and glorify God. What better way to do that than to do that with our whole bodies!

We don’t have to have had weight loss surgery to know that moving and eating right are good ideas, but did you know they are Biblical in nature as well?

The Bible speaks about things like this throughout. In 1 Corinthians, Paul is especially diligent in speaking about it. One of my favorite verses says, “Everything is permissible; but not everything is beneficial …” (1 Corinth. 6:12). This is a great reference for all facets of our lives, but especially in the world of food and nutrition. We can look at a food and say, “Sure, I can have this. But is it going to nourish my body?”

That doesn’t mean that we have to obsess about everything we eat or drink. Just the opposite, as a matter of fact (see: “Who Am I?”).

So where’s the balance?
This is where making ourselves a living sacrifice comes into play.

In the Old Testament, sacrifices were made to God to atone for sins. Of course, we are no longer bound by that law because Christ came, as the ultimate sacrifice, to atone for all of our sins. But even though we are no longer bound by the law of sacrifice, Paul tells us in Romans 12:1 to make ourselves a “living sacrifice”.

What does living sacrifice mean? This means that we give our whole selves – body, mind and soul – to God. We turn it over to Him to do His will. This may mean making some daily sacrifices.

For some of us, that daily sacrifice is just doing something as simple as turning off the TV or getting off Facebook. For others, it’s a little more involved – selling everything and moving to Honduras on a mission trip or adopting children from Albania. For me, the living sacrifice applies to my eating and exercise habits.

For years, I have been obsessed with food, nutrition, eating, and weight loss. I was food-addicted, then food-obsessed (yes, there’s a difference!). My living sacrifice is to eat good, nourishing, healthy foods and to move for at least 15 minutes a day. This is a sacrifice for me, because I’d rather be binging on chocolate and potato chips or obsessing over what fad diet I should try next, or jumping on the scale every two hours (another huge part of this sacrifice is, for me, staying off the scale). So, every day I have to make the choice to make those sacrifices in my life in order to keep my body and mind healthy so that I am better able serve God and do His will for my life.

These daily sacrifices don’t have to be diet related either. Some other things in my life that I have turned into “living sacrifice” moments – housekeeping (anyone else hate doing laundry and dishes??), being careful about books that I read (no more Nora Roberts or Jude Deveraux for me), and gossip (I have a problem sometimes with being gossipy …).

What is your living sacrifice? That’s entirely up to you and God. Is there something in your life that you feel convicted on lately? Is there a bad habit that you would like to break? Start there! These feelings are possibly God’s calling on you to make these things living sacrifices.

If you have no idea, I suggest you sit in a quiet room and focus on your question – “Lord, what can I give as a living sacrifice to you?” Recite Romans 12:1 in your mind. Focus on that. Something will come to mind. Be warned – that something may not be the answer you want to hear. In fact, it will most like you make you want to cry (the day that God had me give up coffee for 48 hours is a great example of this …). You’re going to say, “God, you want me to give up WHAT??” and might even question if it REALLY came from God.

Being a living sacrifice is not easy. Quite the opposite, actually, It’s one of the hardest things you will ever do. But it is so rewarding and so elevating.

What is something you feel you are being led to give as a living sacrifice? Comment below or come join the discussion in our group!