God's Plan For Your Wellbeing

Day 1 of 7 • This day’s reading

Devotional

A wellbeing mindset


The Oxford English Dictionary defines wellbeing as ‘the state of being comfortable, healthy and happy’. Psychology Today goes along with this, but also includes ‘having good mental health, high life satisfaction, and a sense of meaning or purpose. More generally, wellbeing is just feeling well’. 1


As we begin this reading plan, I want to start by focusing on the issue of our perspectives by looking at how we can develop a wellbeing mindset. It is so important that we start here because the way we think impacts every part of our lives. To use a horticultural image: if we want the fruits of wellbeing – physically, emotionally, spiritually, relationally, financially and vocationally – we need to attend to the roots, relating to our thinking. 


One of the doctors in our local church recently wrote to me and said, ‘From my personal experience, my clinical practice and ongoing current research in neuroscience, I have come to understand that the link between mental stress and the physical body cannot be overemphasized.’ Then, she gave ‘8 Tips on How to Live a Stress-Free Life’ many of which are related to our thoughts and our mindset: 



  1. Mindfulness and meditation. Christian mindfulness is becoming aware of the presence of God, and Christian meditation focuses on the Word of God. Together they produce wonderful benefits: ‘You will keep in perfect peace [‘complete wellbeing’, literally ‘shalom, shalom’] those whose minds are steadfast, because they trust in you’ (Isaiah 26:3).

     

  2. Take control of your thoughts. The Bible calls us to ‘take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ’ (2 Corinthians 10:5).  

     

  3. Develop the habit of casting your cares. The Bible encourages: ‘casting all your cares [all your anxieties, all your worries, and all your concerns, once and for all] on Him, for He cares about you [with deepest affection, and watches over you very carefully]’ (1 Peter 5:7, AMP).

     

  4. Connect with people, help people. The Bible tells us we are to live a life of love in 1 Corinthians 13.

     

  5. Do things you enjoy. The Bible paints the picture of the Creator God who ‘provides us with everything for our enjoyment’ (1 Timothy 6:17).

     

  6. Be goal-oriented. The Bible talks about the importance of 'prophetic vision' in Proverbs 29:18 (ESV) and has an underlying theme of the need for us to live with true purpose.

     

  7. Be thankful. Research shows people who are most grateful are generally more satisfied and less stressed. The Bible encourages us, ‘whatever you do, whether in word or deed, do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father’ (Colossians 3:17).


  8. Live loved. The Bible tells us that we are God’s ‘dearly loved children’ (Ephesians 5:1–2). 


To help us explore God’s plan for our wellbeing, we’ll be looking at the story of an Old Testament prophet, Elijah. He’s a great example of someone who seemed to be strong and doing well, and yet had a sudden and complete burnout, before being lovingly restored by the Lord. We will glean from Elijah’s story to help illustrate the themes of replenishment and wellbeing. It would be useful if you could take a few minutes to read through 1 Kings 17-19, especially chapter 19, where the themes of wellbeing, burnout and replenishment are most evident.




1 See ‘What is Well-Being?’, posted 2 January 2019  [accessed August 2020]