In each Epistle, this column features a single question to which our pastors are asked to reply. It is usually connected to the issue’s theme and crafted to reveal the unique personalities and experiences of our beloved leaders.
What do you do to stay healthy physically, mentally, and spiritually?
Pastor June Barrow
Physically, I walk every day, sometimes just observing what is there to see and sometimes listening to the audio Bible in One Year that I use each day. I love to be outside, walking or reading or with my laptop. The out of doors is good for my mental health; my perspective changes when I leave any set of four walls and step outside. Every day I say thank you for the home, family, and friends God has given me. I do not want to underestimate God’s love and power and I do not want to under-trust Him. Gratitude is the healthiest spiritual discipline I know.
Pastor Steven Grant
I cultivate peace and joy by daily abiding with Christ which minimizes stress and anxiety. I also allow adequate time for rest, and refuel with adequate portions of fresh fruits, vegetables, fish, and lean meats. For a healthy mental outlook, I spend as much time as possible with my wife and son, and indulge my passions for music, the arts, reading, and American history. In addition to regular study of God’s Word, I also meditate on works by great spiritual writers and reserve time for uninterrupted prayer.
Pastor Su Kim
I run three times a week and do various activities with my family, preferably outdoors, to stay physically fit. I try to learn new skills on a regular basis to keep mentally active and reach out to good friends or mentors at least weekly. Praying and reading the Bible each morning is always a priority; I also try to acquaint myself with a variety of spiritual disciplines to enrich my relationship with God.
Pastor Brad Rogers
I remain active by working out regularly in the gym, taking bike rides with the kids, and being consistent with rest and diet. In this season of life, staying mentally fit has been accomplished through disciplined study of a curated reading list provided by Fuller Theological Seminary for my doctoral studies. Spiritual health is sought through staying connected to God’s Word daily, being fervent in prayer, and maintaining an intentional balance between work and sabbath.
Pastor Allen Walworth
For physical health, I exercise six days a week (bicycle, walk, elliptical machine) and I sometimes allow my wife Connie to influence what I eat. For mental well-being, I work a crossword puzzle every day and play various sports (especially golf) to relax. To stay healthy spiritually, I spend time each evening in quiet prayer and meditation, and I am always on the lookout for any media (writing, videos, etc.) that inspires, challenges, and lifts my soul.
Pastor Doug Pratt
My personal goal is to live a balanced life. I have been greatly influenced by the health-related writings of Dr. Walt Larimore, a gifted physician and friend. He often discusses the importance of being balanced in four areas—physical, spiritual, mental/emotional, and relational. Here is what I do to stay balanced: I get up to an hour of daily aerobic exercise along with some stretching and anaerobic workouts. While physical exams from a variety of specialists are part of my annual routine, this year for the first time I underwent a comprehensive “executive physical” at the Cleveland Clinic. For me, mental health consists of both emotional and intellectual components. Emotionally, I benefit from time alone at the beginning and end of each day to process and pray through challenges, concerns, and feelings. Intellectual health, for me, is a matter of commitment to being a lifelong learner; I am always reading a couple of books, across a wide range of topics. I have given up most TV watching; I find it is too passive—and rather than expanding my mind, it turns it into mush. For spiritual well-being I am reading the One Year Pray for America Bible on a daily basis, devoting time in the early morning to read Scripture and pray.