One of my favorite texts in the Bible is Luke 2:52:
And Jesus grew in wisdom and stature and in favor with God and man.
That statement encompasses the four stages of development we should strive for in life, and pay attention to everyday. Here are 4 ways to engage these 4 areas.
1. Wisdom – Mental stimulation
There is a quote by Oliver Wendell Holmes that once the brain expands, it cannot go back to what it was before. Our brains have the capacity not to expand in size, but to increase in power by forming new neurons – connections for learning and memory.
We have the ability to learn and remember infinite pieces of information, and the more we exercise our brains, the stronger they become and the more pieces of information we can learn and remember.
You can exercise your brain by:
- Reading to learn more about the world around us whether it’s a trade magazine for your job (feel free to insert Sarah Palin joke here)
- Enrolling in a class, or webinar, or engaging in a conversation with an expert about his field of expertise
- Skipping the reality show and watching a documentary on how things are made instead
- Learning how to play a musical instrument or to speak a new language or to write a new alphabet (Chinese characters, anyone?)
2. Stature – Physical Development
Growing in stature isn’t limited to getting taller but increasing physical strength. Building the muscles so you can do more and increasing the stamina so you can do it longer. Last weeks swim class was a revelation in how important the core muscles are even for staying afloat in the pool. Yesterday’s violin lesson is a reminder how important arm muscles are not just to prevent flabby arms in my summer wear by to hold the instrument for a long time.
- Make time for a brisk walk
- Find a game or sport that you enjoy and join a group that allows you to play it several times a week
- Join a gym and actually use your membership for something other than the sauna
- Never sit when you can stand and never walk when you can run
3. In Favor with God – Spiritual Growth
Whatever your religious persuasion, most people agree on the existence of a higher Power, the Creator and Sustainer of all. Acknowledging Him and developing a relationship with Him is the single best thing anyone can do to improve their life.
Seeing God’s purpose for your life, recognizing the gifts He has given you to accomplish your purpose and working to develop and use those gifts to make this world a better place creates the most fulfilling life possible.
- Start your day with prayer and meditation
- Learn some uplifting songs that you can sing when you need some encouragement (one of the happiest people I’ve ever known was my grandmother and she sang hymns all the time. Coincidence?)
- Join a group of like minded people with whom you can study and learn more about God. (It’s why I go to church every week to discuss the things I’ve been learning about God in the past 7 days and to prepare for a brand new week’s revelation)
- End your day with prayer, thanking God for everything you experienced today and asking for another opportunity tomorrow.
4. In Favor with man – Social Interaction
You’ve heard the saying “No man is an island, no man stands alone.”
We all need each other and depend on each other:
- for companionship
- for learning
- for shared experiences and memories
- for dance partners – because it takes two to tango
Increase your social interaction today:
- Make a phone call to a relative you haven’t talked to in a while
- Make it a point to talk with at least one new person every day
- Find a young person who could use some guidance and help
- Find a volunteering opportunity and sign up. And actually show up!
If our chain is only as strong as its weakest link, we help ourselves by helping others.
One of the most rewarding feelings comes from someone expressing gratitude for something we’ve done for them.
There are many opportunities to volunteer locally and even overseas but you can start by being kinder to the people around you. Live Right right here!
Thanks for reading.
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