I would wager that this article's title, as well as the present date, makes you think you're about to read some thoughts on the New Year. Well, yes and no. Actually, this is a Biblical health talk. Each letter in the acronym "NEWSTART" stands for one of God's provisions for our total health.
N= Nutrition. "And God said, Behold, I have given you every herb bearing seed, which is upon the face of all the earth, and every tree, in the which is the fruit of a tree yielding seed; to you it shall be for meat" Genesis 1:29. Medical and nutritional science have finally come to understand, without acknowledging the Source, that God's original whole food plant based diet is the best for prevention of disease and overall health. (Recommended viewing is the documentary "Forks Over Knives")
E= Exercise. "I therefore so run, not as uncertainly; so fight I, not as one that beateth the air: But I keep under my body, and bring it into subjection" 1 Corinthians 9:26, 27. Exercise requires self-discipline, but one cannot deny its value. A daily half hour brisk walk would be a good start.
W= Water. The importance of pure drinking water was the subject matter of various miracles. Jesus identified as the Giver of that vital water of life. "But whosoever drinketh of the water that I shall give him shall never thirst; but the water that I shall give him shall be in him a well of water springing up into everlasting life" John 4:14. Just as we need to drink abundantly of the water of life, so we need abundant physical water intake (8 – 10 glasses a day) for physical health.
S= Sunshine. Created the fourth day, the sun is a necessity for the continuance of life. The sun's action on our skin results in the much needed Vitamin D. Sunshine is known to elevate mood as well as to regulate various body hormones that allow for restful sleep at night. Try for at least 20 minutes of daily sun. In Malachi 4:2 the coming Christ is referred to as the Sun. "But unto you that fear my name shall the Sun of righteousness arise with healing in his wings." How fitting a name for the Life-giver.
T= Temperance. This is defined as complete abstinence from things harmful and moderate use of the healthy. In 1 Corinthians 9:25 Paul tells us "every man that striveth for the mastery is temperate in all things." Did you note the "all"?
A= Air. Because of central air and heat, there are those who rarely open windows or get outside to breathe deeply of fresh air. Stale air lacks the health-giving negative ions. Deep breathing of fresh air will refresh the brain cells resulting in increased alertness and clearer thinking. It was the God-breathed breath that changed Adam from a lump of clay into a living being. "And the LORD God formed man of the dust of the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living soul" Genesis 2:7. Practice intentional deep breathing several times a day.
R= Rest. 7 – 8 hours of sleep per night beginning well before midnight is optimum for body cell repair and depression prevention. This is due to the hormones that are formed and/or released in a time sensitive way requiring our being asleep and in the dark. "It is vain for you to rise up early, to sit up late, to eat the bread of sorrows: for so he giveth his beloved sleep" so "Rest in the LORD" Psalm 127:2, 37:7.
T= Trust in divine power. Many studies have concurred that those who identify as having a personal relationship with the Lord live longer even after controlling for other variables. We would do well to heed the words of the wise man. "Trust in the LORD with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding. In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths." "Whoso putteth his trust in the LORD shall be safe" Proverbs 3:5, 6; 29:25.
Now would be a good time to begin the practice of God's health plan.
Kathy Irizarry is a member of the Seventh-day Adventist Church.