Today’s society defines self-care by activities. Taking an evening bath, watching television, getting a massage, and shopping are all defined as self-care.
When you look at just the activities of self-care, it can seem indulgent. You might not need to get a massage, or go shopping, or take a long bath. You have kids to take care of and responsibilities that are waiting for you.
If you continue to look at self-care as just activities, then it’ll always seems indulgent.
Yet true self-care is never indulgent. It’s necessary.
Just look at the actual definition of self-care. Self-care is the deliberate practice of paying attention to and taking care of your physical, mental, and emotional health.
Imagine if you never paid attention to your physical health, even though the Bible says your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit (1 Cor. 6:19-20).
Or imagine if you never paid attention to your mental and emotional health, even though Jesus said you should love the Lord with all your heart, soul, and mind (Matt. 22:37).
We can’t give all we have in worship if we never pay attention to what we have.
One striking thing I’ve noticed about Matthew 22:39 is that Jesus says the second greatest commandment is to “love your neighbor as yourself.”
Loving our neighbors means we have to love ourselves first.
True biblical self-care is taking care of what we have been given by God, so we can give it back in worship to Him.
We can’t serve others when we are running on empty. We can’t embody the Gospel when our body is failing. And we can’t meet our neighbor’s needs when we can’t even meet our own needs.
Jesus understood that self-care is essential for the work of the Kingdom.
Oftentimes, we can try to make ourselves the exception to this. But as you end this Bible Plan, open yourself up to the idea that you can take care of yourself.
Once you start practicing true self-care, then you’ll start to experience all the joy God has for you. Today, pray that God might open you up to more self-care and joy.