“A word fitly spoken is like apples of gold in settings of silver.”
Proverbs 25:11 (NKJV)
We were once told that we should take ‘5 a day’ of fruit and veg if we wanted to be healthy. But in a study carried out by researchers from University College London we are advised that it is now 7 a day of fruit and veg that will save lives.
The study found that eating fruit and vegetables was associated with a lower risk of death from any cause, and deaths from cardiovascular disease and cancer in particular. The higher the intake of fruit and vegetables, the greater the protective effects seemed to be. People who ate 7 or more portions a day had a 33% reduced risk of death from any cause, a 25% reduced risk of death from cancer and a 31% reduced risk of death from cardiovascular disease, compared with people who ate less than one portion per day[i].
I struggle to consume even 5 a day, let alone 7, but realizing how important it is to my health and well-being I will have to give this aspect of my diet greater importance especially as I get older.
As I was mulling this over I got to thinking that, as important as it is to be careful about what I put into my mouth, am I so careful with what comes out?
Of the tongue James says, “Likewise, the tongue is a small part of the body, but it makes great boasts. Consider what a great forest is set on fire by a small spark…With the tongue we praise our Lord and Father, and with it we curse human beings, who have been made in God’s likeness. Out of the same mouth come praise and cursing. My brothers and sisters, this should not be.”(James 3:5, 9-10 NIV)
For our own spiritual health, and the spiritual well-being of others, it is important that what comes out of mouths is positive and uplifting. As well as eating ‘7 a day’ to be physically healthy, how about speaking ‘7 a day’ for spiritual health? Here are 7 things to think about:
- Praise God, thanking him for all your blessings.
- Say “I love you,” or let someone know you care.
- Say “I’m sorry,”’ or give someone the gift of forgiveness.
- Ask someone, “How are you?” and mean it.
- Give someone encouragement. It may make all the difference in their world.
- Give someone a compliment. It may just change their day.
- Say “Thank you!” as often as you can.
If we focus on the positive things that we can say we won’t have time for gossip or other negative words. Why not give it a go?
Father, may the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart be pleasing in your sight.
Study by Barry Robinson
i[Oyebode O, Gordon-Dseagu, Walker A, Mindell JS. Fruit and vegetable consumption and all-cause, cancer and CVD mortality: analysis of Health Survey for England data. Journal of Epidemiology and Community Health. Published online March 31 2014]
Worldwide Church of God Camberwell
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