Lutheran Church Extension Fund
Wellness in one word (well, eight really)

Wellness in one word (well, eight really)

This month: Assessing Wellness. Reading time: two minutes.

I think I’m just Stupid enough to Keep It Simple. (Go ahead; KISS me!)

It pains me terribly to hear church work professionals stumble and stammer trying to explain that, “Something’s wrong, but I just can’t put my finger on it.”

That’s why at Grace Place Wellness we try to keep it simple. What follows is not perfect, but it’s a simple guide to answering the question, “How are you?” As you work your way around The Wellness Wheel, these one word definitions, eight in all, might be a way to start.

So if one word definitions are enough, why do I insist on adding commentary? Like I said, they’re not perfect, just simple.

See if these simple definitions help you answer, “How am I doing?”

Baptismal Wellness in one word: IDENTITY. It doesn’t matter what the world thinks of you. Or what the devil thinks of you. Or even what your own rambling thoughts tell you about yourself. God’s word of pure grace and adoption give you your identity in Christ. Lost? Confused? Remember your baptism!

Spiritual Wellness in one word: RECEPTIVITY. Jesus said, “Man does not live on bread alone, but on every word that comes from the mouth of God” (Matthew 4:4). Are you hungry? Do you have a daily desire to welcome, consume, and inwardly digest the Word that God has for you today? That’s spiritual health!

Relational Wellness in one word: UNITY. Do thoughts of family, friends, church members, partners in ministry, bring a smile to your face? When you’re with them, do you know that you belong, that you share more that unites you than any differences that try to divide? You’re relationally healthy!

Intellectual Wellness in one word: CURIOSITY. The next person you meet today has something to share. She knows something you don’t, has experienced things you never will. Realizing you don’t have it all figured out makes you curious to hear the stories others have to tell. Open, honest communication is intellectual health.

Emotional Wellness in one word: HARMONY. Hurting people hurt people. Conflict makes everything sour. A foul atmosphere ruins productivity. The forgiveness of Christ, mutually shared among his children, brings healing, sweetness, and sunshine. Broken relationships mended by grace and graciousness is emotional wellness.

Vocational Wellness in one word: HUMILITY. Ministry is service. Servants know who’s the Master and who isn’t. God’s daily summons to serve in ministry (“What? Me? Are you kidding, Lord?”) is a constantly humbling experience. Feel inadequate for the task? That’s the first requirement. It’s vocationally healthy.

Physical Wellness in one word: VITALITY. Not super strength. Not endless energy. Simply fitness to be able to respond, as the Lord allows, when he calls you to serve in your various vocations at home, at church, and in the community. Physical health is guarded for the sake of our “Response-Ability.”

Financial Wellness in one word: GENEROSITY. “Gratitude” would be another good word. So would “contentment.” Financial planning flowing from God’s gift of “wisdom” would also work. When you put together gratitude, contentment, wisdom, and a healthy dose of love, you get generosity, a sure sign of financial wellness.

So, how are you doin’?

Next week: the Fruit of the Spirit as a guide for wellness.

Thanks for reading.