By Chris Fields
As Christians, when we come to Christ, we say we have “received salvation,” as if there aren’t any more actions or steps we need to take. But repentance isn’t just a confession: It’s a conscious action. In 1 Corinthians 1:18, Paul says that for “us who are being saved,” the message of the cross is the wisdom of God. We have to choose to live in that wisdom.
When we repent, we recognize the unfavorable outcomes of our actions (such as spiritual death, the wages of sin); we accept the fact that our actions (sin) are the root cause of our adversity (spiritual death); and we repent of (turn from) those actions. Repentance, however, isn’t a one-time action but an ongoing process, because as believers, we still have to learn the right actions and then act accordingly — and we can only learn over time as we understand God’s Word and His requirements and put them into practice.
As believers, we are called to put this repentance process on loop in every aspect of our lives, for the rest of our lives. Eventually we grow enough to where we can run this cycle prior to an action (stop sin before it starts), as we achieve greater levels of wisdom and foresight.
But as long as we continue to embark on the same action, we won’t be saved from the adverse outcome(s). Let’s take our health, for instance.
We eat what we want when we want it, and however much of it we want. We gain weight; then we stress. We fail to be physically active. We gain more weight, and we stress some more. Then we don’t eat regularly and take ourselves through long periods of fasting, and we lose weight for a month or so, then our body adjusts and begins to conserve what we do eat to keep us energized. Now we begin to gain more weight and don’t know what to do, so we start stressing again.
Now our internal systems begin to malfunction, our energy levels are extremely low, and we begin urinating a lot. Our eyesight starts blurring and we become extremely thirsty. We begin to experience episodes of delirium. We start experiencing episodic feelings of pressure in our chest. Then we pass out and wake up in the hospital. We find out we’ve experienced a heart attack, diabetes complications or a stroke, and we had never been diagnosed with diabetes or knew we were susceptible to a heart attack or stroke.
We pray for God’s healing, and immediately God grants salvation in this form: The doctor gives you a prescription regimen and refers you to a healthcare team to empower you with correct information on the steps you need to take and the life you need to live to avoid this life-threatening event in the future. Here are some of the steps they are trained to teach you: Healthy Eating, Active Living (HEAL). Will you accept God’s salvation?
Chris Fields is the founder and executive director of H.E.A.L. Mississippi and a graduate in kinesiology with advance studies in nutrition. He serves as a clinical exercise physiologist/CPT and is credentialed in Exercise Is Medicine through American College of Sports Medicine.