Keep The Brain, Body & Spirit Moving

mustangNow with just the two of us, it was time to sell our large family home in the country. We had two acres and plenty of space to be very active with family and friends. But that meant lots of mowing, trimming, weeding, water system maintenance and house upkeep time and expense. The effort and energy no longer made sense.

So, we chose a much smaller home in a gated community closer to the grocery, shopping, a clubhouse and many amenities. Downsizing was hard, but what a relief!

Our new neighbor was the lead mechanic genius at a local dealership. Not only was his garage white-glove-meticulous, it also housed his pride and joy, an antique 1967 Ford Mustang in tip-top condition. That little beauty continually won car show awards! Sweeeet!

Mac and his wife had one concern with us living next door. Frequently, he would start up his antique car with a rumbling roar that could be heard ‘round the block. It was a muscle man’s car-roar. After letting it rumble a bit, Mac backed it out and thundered down the road. Truly, it didn’t bother us at all, and we learned some special things that we related to our brain, body and spirit.

The car needed to be run regularly to keep it in working condition.  Without keeping it moving, Alex said, it would quickly become dysfunctional.

 

When a car sits idle

Here’s a short list of things that could, and would go wrong with the car without keeping it moving.

First, the battery slowly loses it inner charge and strength.

Second, the engine belts and wires, valves and cylinder would lack oil and become corroded when resting too much. No movement equals corrosion!

Third, brakes will lose their grip and wheels jam without frequent use.

Fourth, electrical connections tend to corrode and disrupt the spark and electrical flow to operate important parts of the car.

Fifth, most of the fluids (oil, brake fluid, etc.) lose viscosity (ability to lubricate) over time. A fresh supply is necessary.

Amazingly, the need for movement and frequent use closely relates to our brain, body and spiritual condition!

 

Brain movement

Like our car, there are many brain functions that need to get fired up and moving regularly, or they will start slowing down. Brain movement keeps our brain young.

There are six key cognitive functions of the brain that need to be kept moving to function well. According to brain and memory researchers Nancy Linde and Phillip Harvey, PhD, these include long-term memory, working memory, executive functioning, attention to detail, multitasking and processing speed. Their latest book is, 417 More games, puzzles & trivia challenges specially designed to keep your brain young. This book has exercises based on good research that can help us keep all six-brain functions going!

Someone may tell us we’re brain dead, but we don’t really want it to be the truth. A strong and healthy brain is a thinking and moving brain.

 

Physical movement

According to Clyde Wilson, director of the Center for Nutrition at Stanford’s Sports Medicine Institute, there are three main reasons that physical movement is critically important to maintain health. He says, “First…using your body forces your body to stay functional. The second reason is that the hormonal response to movement improves psychological health. The third is that (physical) movement raises metabolism for many hours after movement occurs and, as a result, reduces the risk of almost every main disease we suffer from.”

Wow! Not only does an aging car need movement to stay functional and alive, so does our body functioning, our hormonal-psychological health and our metabolic protection from disease.

 

Spiritual movement

When considering spirit aliveness, we need to know what it is, what to do and how to do it.

Have you noticed? To “Keep on – Keepin’ on” we all need inner-man strengthening and renewal. Even the famous spiritual giant Apostle Paul said, “Though our outward man perish, yet our inner man is renewed day by day.” Our inner man is our spirit.

What do we do to keep our inner man alive and strong? Jesus said, “Man shall not live by bread alone but by every Word that proceeds from the mouth of God.” This means that we ask God to speak to our inner man while we read biblical passages.

Next, like the car, the brain and the body, how do we keep our spirit moving?

To keep our inner man “on the move” we do three things. First, we embrace what we read by consciously saying we believe them. Secondly, we pray His Words and ask God to help us apply them. Thirdly, we try to apply them correctly when and where they belong.

When we keep our inner man moving, we are keeping our spirit-man on the move and our faith alive and not dead.

There are challenges and evil to face every day, and we cannot stay alive by physical things alone. To be a daily winner, it is desperately needful to keep our inner spirit-man moving.

 

When facing the challenges and issues of 2017, do I want to keep my car functional and well? It requires movement and constant care. Do I want to keep my brain and my physical body sharp and strong? Like the car, I look in the mirror and say, “Keep it moving!”

Do I want to keep my inner spirit man and faith sharp and strong? I again say to myself, “Keep it moving! Yes! Keep it moving!”

 

Steve Davis, Ed.S. is an adjunct professor at Trinity International University who writes about personal development and education. He can be reached at sdavis@tiu.edu.

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