Most things in life are not rocket science. They’re more a matter of persistence and consistent behavior. That doesn’t make living a good life easy, but it does make it possible.

Health habits are a good example, including food and exercise. I’m a Lifetime Weight Watcher. That means I weigh in at least once a month within two pounds of my (very moderate) goal. But what it really means is a daily, sometimes even hourly, decision to overcome impulsive eating and think about needs versus wants. It means attending a supportive group every week, to remember why health is important and that I’m not alone in working on it. And it means practicing varied, enjoyable activity often enough that I remember how good it feels and how great it is to be able to stretch and move. Years of constant choices gradually become the “new normal,” so new habits work for my benefit.

Becoming good stewards of our bodies is like any other aspect of faithful, joyful stewardship. Making regular, life-affirming decisions doesn’t necessarily get easier, but the rewards mount up and it’s fun along the way. Actually, improving our physical health is a lot like choices we make for our spiritual health: making intentional decisions about our daily practices, participating in our faith community to remember our purpose (the One to Whom we belong) and to know that we’re not alone. And in both cases we keep trying out new behaviors to reflect more faithfully the cause we profess to follow.

Your partner in ministry,

Betsy Schwarzentraub