"Everything is permissible-but not everything is beneficial." 1 Corinthians 10:23 (NIV)
(First of all, I must admit that I've been quibbling a bit with God for the last couple of days over this post. He won't let go!)
A lot of people don't like feet. I'm not particularly fond of feet. However, as I was smoothing on my sunless tanning lotion the other morning, I thought, "I've got pretty feet." It seems they are the only part of my body not showing unsightly signs of aging...other than those crazy hairs that have erupted on my toes and that one little spot on the top of my foot. Where did they come from??? Fortunately a razor can remedy that! So yeah, other than the minor hair situation, my feet look pretty good! Somehow they escaped the wrinkles, bulges, blotches, and age spots that have invaded the rest of my skin. So back to the lotion rubbing...as I worked to apply the tanner evenly, I couldn't help but think how lovely my feet would look with a real tan. I'm heading to the beach soon, so that is a real possibility. But I know better.
You see, I've witnessed a 24 year old beauty deal with the devastation of melanoma...her first year of marriage spent agonizing with the side-effects of cancer treatment, dealing with fear of never being able to have children, or even losing her life. By the grace of God, she lives...just as beautiful as ever...has two precious children...and is cancer free.
Sadly, I've also seen my husband's 27 year old cousin battle valiantly against her melanoma...and lose the fight...an untimely death that her doctor's said was caused by years of over-exposure to the sun...and in tanning beds.
My daughters have been raised to slather on the sunscreen...and never step foot in a tanning bed. Hopefully their skin will stay healthier and more beautiful than mine.
As I pondered getting that real tan on my feet, the verse above came to mind.
Lots of things are permissible...but not beneficial. We need to consider all the ways we treat our bodies...foods or drinks that we ingest...proper exercise or the lack thereof. It is critical to be discerning with what we allow in our minds...from TV, the internet, music, books...and to be careful of the places we go. We need to be mindful of the Holy Spirit that indwells our earthly tent, and honor His presence. We must realize the effects of our witness and the impact it has on others.
As Romans 10:15 says, "How beautiful are the feet of those who bring good news!" Let's be certain as we walk this Christian journey, and share the best news ever...that of Jesus Christ...to live lives worthy of His calling us to be His own! Let's aspire to have "beautiful feet"!
Lord, thank You for the miraculous work You performed in knitting our bodies in our mother's womb. Help us to care for them as You would have us to. Protect our minds...our hearts...our witness. We love You!