by Jason Cruise
I turned 40 just a few weeks ago.
I have been warned, for years now, that a man's fourth decade on earth brings with it journeys that were yet unknown, and even, yes, reserved for those years after 40, so as to grind it into a man's spirit that he is no longer young. The eyes will go bad, joints will ache, health will show signs of decline ... these were the prophetic utterances I'd heard for these last few remaining years of my 30's.
It has been a bitter truth to confront, because I actually take decent care of myself. In our ongoing conversation, my doctor and I have been pondering the issues surrounding my radically inactive metabolism, and subsequent extra pounds, relative to my active lifestyle, that should, in theory, boost metabolic activity.
I work out several times a week. Do not eat fast food, do not eat that much meat, and take many vitamins and natural supplements for heart health. Not too bad for a guy who's cholesterol is bouncing off the ceiling. I found his words to be interesting in all matters of the spirit. Brian said, "No matter what we do, Jason, or what we may experiment with, I simply cannot separate you from your family tree."
Yes. We all have a history don't we? Yes we do.
Truthfully, I know my nutritional approach needs reform. Even still, I have a family history of heart disease that is undeniable and unavoidable. Which means I've got to apply a different variant of discipline now that I've clipped the dark caverns and recesses of a man's health in life after 40.
I have a family tree. I cannot detach my health from my genetic code. Something more has to be done, literally, to keep me alive.
So also it is written, "The first man, Adam, became a living soul." The last Adam became a life-giving spirit. However, the spiritual is not first, but the natural; then the spiritual. The first man is from the earth, earthy; the second man is from heaven. As is the earthy, so also are those who are earthy; and as is the heavenly, so also are those who are heavenly. Just as we have borne the image of the earthy, we will also bear the image of the heavenly.
(1 Corinth. 15:45-49)
In a few days you and I are going to gather with family and friends to celebrate the birth of Jesus the Christ. Jesus, the Scriptures say, came at "just the right time." (Romans 5:6) Jesus came to do that which we could never do on our own.
On a cold night long ago in Bethlehem a baby was born. He did come to this earth to bring you greater discipline in your lifestyle, nor did He come to offer you strength in your approach to behavioral reform.
No amount of reform could cure the simple truth that you have a family tree that started with a man named Adam; and, the fruit of that tree, my brother, was called Iniquity. The Scriptures tell us that we all, every one, "bear his image." Adam, a natural man, fell to the fruit of this natural tree. So did I, and so did you.
No matter what you do, you cannot reform iniquity, for it is literally ... in you. You cannot separate yourself from its story or its effect.
This simple reality is why you need a Savior.
This simply reality is the reason why "unto us a child is born ..."
Merry Christmas My Brother. Jason Cruise