Jesus’ disciple John wrote down His words, “I have come that they may have life, and that they may have it more abundantly” (John 10:10). These words raise some important questions: Is my life abundant? What does it mean to have life more abundantly? If Jesus would like to give me more abundant life, how can I accept it? Can I help others to accept it too?
On 8–9 May Health Ministry leaders of the TED unions came together to talk about what it means to have an abundant life through Jesus. As Adventists, we have the privilege to carry a special health message, given us by God through His messenger; the health message that is based on the Bible and should also be evidence-based. The message is not given us to tell others what they should do or what they are not to do, but to become “engaged in the restoration of life as God created it to be, through a compassionate service of comforting, relieving suffering, bringing healing, preventing illness, and enhancing life whenever possible to whoever needs it” as it is stated on the TED Health Ministry webpage.
The leaders from unions presented the projects they are doing in their areas to achieve these goals. In many places health expos are organised, where people can learn about healthy living and can have some simple, but health-wise significant, measurements taken. Other unions have adopted health programs like The Journey to Wholeness (help for the addicted), CREATION Health (Bible based health enhancing program), and CHIP (chronic disease prevention program), and / or organise health conferences, featuring well-known health specialists.
Great Britain has started an approach called Centres of Hope, Health and Healing, which promotes a local church as a community centre, where there are different health enhancing activities and events conducted throughout the year; where church members are dedicated to help the community around them to become healthier in a physical, mental, social and spiritual sense.
Health retreats and camps are good places to relieve stress and learn practically what it means to lead a healthy lifestyle. Sometimes we are afraid to change our ‘not so good’ habits, but when we experience what a positive difference can some little changes make in our lives, then it is more likely that we want to continue living in a new way. Health magazines are also a good way to promote positive changes, as are the TV shows and Internet pages.
We would like to enjoy good health on this Earth, however, we know that it is not all there is. God has prepared something more for us in the life to come, as the Bible tells us, “Eye has not seen, nor ear heard, nor have entered into the heart of man the things which God has prepared for those who love Him” (1 Corinthians 2:9). We would like people around us to have this hope as well, and assurance in their hearts that better times are yet ahead; and that while preparing for this new home in heaven, we would like to take the best care of the life that God has entrusted to us on this Earth. If you would like to be part of it, contact the health leader of your local church and ask what you can do to help yourself and those around you.