Does God Care if You’re Fit?

“I have been bought with a price and I belong to God. Do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit, who is in you, whom you have received from God? You are not your own; you were bought at a price. Therefore honor God with your body. “~ 1 Corinthians 6:19-20.

When I ask myself if God cares if I’m fit, this verse makes me think that maybe He does.

I was in a downward spiral; becoming a fat, sloppy shadow of the person I once was.  I had spent my entire life tiptoeing on eggshells to appease the alcoholics in my life.  I was co-dependent, believed every mean spirited word that was thrown at me, and my only friend was food.  And that wasn’t even a good friendship.   I was fat because I was unhappy and I was unhappy because I was fat.

One day I woke with a determination to find the person I had once known.  She was inside me somewhere, buried beneath the Boston cream donuts and macaroni and cheese.  But there was one problem.  I didn’t feel I was worthy.

 Who was I to deserve being strong and healthy?  Who was I to deserve being able to take time away from my family to work out?  Who was I to deprive my daughter by not allowing foods that were my weakness into the house? Who was I to deserve having a voice or being happy?

 I was nobody.  So I did nothing.

Then one day it dawned on me.  My body was a thoughtfully crafted, one of a kind, handmade gift, created just for me by God.  Each idiosyncrasy shaped with care, each strength and weakness laid with purpose.  My body was a precious gift, and I was trashing it.  It was just as if I took the scarf my mother knit for me before passing away, and trampled it into the dirt, tearing the threads, destroying its beauty, disrespecting my mother with each grinding of my heel. 

 By disrespecting my body, I was disrespecting God. Suddenly taking care of the gift He gave me – my body – mattered.  It wasn’t me I was tarnishing, but Him.

 But, does God care if I am fit?

God never looks in my mirror and wishes I was someone else.  He loves me no matter what.  He loves me no more when I am strong and healthy than He did when I was overweight, diseased, and unhappy.  His love never fails.

 But my love did.  I had failed my daughter by not being a good example of health.  I had failed myself by letting others determine my worth.  And I had failed God by letting my life become too dark to let His light shine through it.  By learning to respect my body – the Gift God gave to me – I learned to respect myself too, and found greater strength in my relationship with Christ along the way.  This new way of thinking is what inspired me to change my lifestyle, develop a healthy mindset, and create Strength for the Journey; Forging Faith and Fitness on facebook because I believe that God wants us to be fit.

 Now, each day before I rise from bed, I offer a simple prayer: “Dear God, let me honor you with respect by caring for this temple and keeping it from disrepair.  Let me strengthen its foundation to withstand all storms. Let me allow your light to shine through the windows of my soul.  Let all know who I serve through my kindness and love.  In Jesus’ name, amen.”

 Do you think God cares if you’re healthy and fit?  Do you ever feel guilty when you buy healthy foods for your family instead of junk food or when you take time to work out?

Stay strong!


After Melinda Patton’s daughter moved away to college, she decided she had no more excuses keeping her from being in shape.  Three years and 55 pounds ago she began a journey to become spiritually and physically strong and in the process discovered her passion and purpose in forging faith and fitness.  She is now studying for her Personal Training certification and manages a facebook page called Strength for the Journey; Forging Faith and Fitness. Through her page, she encourages and empowers others to create strong and healthy bodies for Christ.

© 2013, Shalena D.I.V.A. – Personal Branding| Content Marketing| Product Creation. All rights reserved.


  1. Wakeelah Everfield via Facebook on May 23, 2011 at 2:58 pm

    I have long thought this. I believe that we should care for this body with our lives. Do I? I’m working on it AS.WE.SPEAK!

  2. via Facebook on May 23, 2011 at 3:11 pm

    @Wakeelah–Girl, we are n the same boat. I think God does care that we are fit and healthy to serve Him. How canwe serve him if we are sick? I’m so gladMelinda wrote this article. I’m encouraged. i started working out again yesterday. I ran with a new program and Iloved it. I’ll share more in my next post. I want others to join me in my journey. It wasn’t bad at all.

  3. Anthony Bridges via Facebook on May 23, 2011 at 3:12 pm


  4. Anthony Bridges via Facebook on May 23, 2011 at 3:15 pm

    HAVE 2

  5. Lucretia Whytus via Facebook on May 23, 2011 at 3:19 pm

    I totally agree.

  6. via Facebook on May 23, 2011 at 3:22 pm

    I think some churhces are starting to focus on more areas of our lives, but I think there needs to be a greater emphasis on overall health at the church level. God cares about more than if you canshout and attend 10 million church services. He needs you physically and mentally fit for service unto im.

  7. Sibongile Mabongi Kunene via Facebook on May 23, 2011 at 3:23 pm

    Yes he does, just now I was thinking of updating my status with *overeating* so as to get comments, this is my problem. I was even asking myself if its because I can afford, what if I did not have the money to buy all those goodies, would I still overeat….Lord help me

  8. Deborann Weaver via Facebook on May 23, 2011 at 3:24 pm

    Yes absolutely

  9. via Facebook on May 23, 2011 at 3:29 pm

    @Sibongile–You should reach out to Melinda Patton and her page Strength for the Journey; Forging Faith and Fitness because she used to have a bad relationship with food, but was able to turn her life around. She now has healthy eating habits. She’s agreat inspiration. Join r page and tell her that I sent you!

  10. Elaine GodsProperty Walker via Facebook on May 23, 2011 at 3:33 pm

    @Diva…I love Melinda’s page…Question….what foods do u think God would choose to eat? LOTS of fruits and vegetables, whole grain, LOTs of water to drink…..I had a friend call me and tell me about all the products she bought to lose weight….I had to burst her bubble and tell her, she could have gotten ALL that from the grocery store!

    • Melinda on May 24, 2011 at 11:17 am

      ‎@Elaine, you are right about the foods – it is easier to be healthy if we eat natural foods (think the perimerter aisles of the grocery stores.) But, I think it is important to that we realize it is how we eat often that is more important… than what we eat. When we use food as a drug to cover up emotional distress, or if eating becomes a disorder (too much or too little), then we are using food as something other than what it was intended – which was to be fuel. I read something recently that we need to view food as fuel, not as a friend. ~ Melinda

  11. Nina Lewis Henderson via Facebook on May 23, 2011 at 3:34 pm

    Yes you should : Flesh & Blood won’t inherent the Kingdom the Soul is the Focus !!!

  12. via Facebook on May 23, 2011 at 3:36 pm

    @Elaine– i don’t know those answers. Melinda would be best suited to answer that. She’s vacationing right now, but I’m sure she’ll answer your question. I think non-processed foods like fruits and vegetables. You could go organic, but that’s a personal choice. I just think for some liek me, eating regularly and less processed foods is the goal. then I can upgrade to better foods.

  13. Gene Steele via Facebook on May 23, 2011 at 4:29 pm

    God expects u to take care of ur body! Not to abuse it!

  14. Lisa A Gore via Facebook on May 23, 2011 at 4:59 pm

    this is good stuff! i am so excited about what God is doing! I am currently writing a book called “Fast Fast” and it’s all about my weight lost and healthy eatting life style. It’s so important and the one’s that don’t think that it is are grieving the Holy Spirit. When you are over weight and out of shape you do less. Period! when you are not in bondage and addicted to food you are free. People don’t even fast anymore from food they like to fast from T.V. it’s crunch time for me AGAIn and this time I plan to win big! I have been a size18 then a 16, then a 20 then a 12, then a 22, then a 10!!!!!!!!!! really! from my 20’s until now it’s been a battle!

  15. Lisa A Gore via Facebook on May 23, 2011 at 5:01 pm

    but now I am a size 12-14 and my goal isnt that far off. I am an emotional eater and I will have up’s and downs but food will no longer be my DRUG of choise. God deserves my best in every area of my life, period. in the last month I have gone from 210 down to 190! actually I’m on my way to the guy at 7pm! if you are in Philadelphia PA Join me there and you can get in for free if you come with me!

  16. Lisa A Gore via Facebook on May 23, 2011 at 5:03 pm

    lastly…………… GLUTTONY is a SIN

  17. via Facebook on May 23, 2011 at 5:06 pm

    @Lisa, where are you going? Where si the guy?

  18. Nina Lewis Henderson via Facebook on May 23, 2011 at 5:27 pm

    Once again the body is temporary it’s not the outside it’s the inside : abuse to anything
    Is no good . God will show you how temporary : it’s going to fall apart no matter how much workout you do . There is No Flesh in the Kingdom . I Know only God can Fix the inside nothing we can do : it’s Grace & Mercy the outside is very Temporary !!!!! Job 32:4

  19. Nina Lewis Henderson via Facebook on May 23, 2011 at 5:34 pm

    Job 32:8 / Jerm 31:31

  20. Lisa A Gore via Facebook on May 23, 2011 at 5:40 pm

    oh, busy multi tasking.. planet fitness on baltimore pike

  21. Lisa A Gore via Facebook on May 23, 2011 at 5:42 pm

    nina are you saying that God does not care if we are morbitly obease?

  22. via Facebook on May 23, 2011 at 5:56 pm

    But Nina, you have to take care of your temple. I totally understand your point, but how can you effectively serve God sick or out of shape It’s not fun being sick.

  23. Pauline Seaport via Facebook on May 23, 2011 at 6:24 pm

    I agree with Nina to the fullest. Where did this concept of our outer self start playing a part with God. Yes, its a good logical theory for us to try to stay as healthy as we can while on earth. But when we die this outer shell is no more. It’s temporary. Check out 2 Corinthians 4:16-18 – So we do not lose heart. Though our outer self is wasting away, our inner self is being renewed day by day. For this light momentary affliction is preparing for us an eternal weight of glory beyond all comparison, as we look not to the things that are seen but to the things that are unseen. For the things that are seen are transient, but the things that are unseen are eternal.

    • Melinda on May 24, 2011 at 11:18 am

      ‎@Nina and Pauline, I agree that the body is only temporary. Our size does not affect our worth (to ourselves, others and to God) I only know that when I feel better and am healthy and strong, I personally can better serve God. I have more… energy, and am less depressed. Is it necessary? No. But we do have to watch making food our idol, participating in gluttony, and using food as an addiction. Our outward appearance and our health is often a mirror of our spiritual and emotional selves and the plagues of the body, if untreated, can begin to rule us. But, I appreciate the verses you listed! I will study them. 🙂

  24. via Facebook on May 23, 2011 at 7:52 pm

    @Pauline and Nina–I have to disagree. God created the outer self so why wouldn’t it matter? We got our cars tuned up, its oil changed, etc so it can run properly, but it’s ok to neglect your health? I don’t think you should obsess over being fit and take steroids or spend more time in the gym than taking care of your responsibilities, but you must tend to your health. You only have one body. How can you go to the house of the Lord to praise when you are sick in your bed and can’t walk. If we are to only be concerned about our souls, then why did God make us flesh and bone, too?

  25. @Shalena, regarding churches starting to reach out to people to minister to their health needs…with programs like Body Gospel, Devoted Fitness, online magazines like Faith and Fitness and other’s working out is beginning to be a place to meet with other Christians to create strong bodies for Christ. ~ Melinda

    • Suzette on May 24, 2011 at 1:42 am

      Melinda, what a beautiful article! God is using you sister!

  26. Suzette on May 24, 2011 at 1:40 am

    I believe, for the most part, that our outer bodies are a direct reflection of what is going on the inside, in our minds and spirit.
    Agreed that our bodies are only temporary and will not go beyond the grave, but will return to the dust of which it came.
    But Jesus clearly was concerned about us being fed and nourished with “physical” food. He turned water into wine..the BEST wine…”saving the best for last” as the wedding guests experienced) He fed 5,000 with bread and fish. I am sure there are more times that Jesus not only fed the spiritual minds of people, but also the physical bodies. He cares not just for our spirit but also our physical bodies.

  27. Melinda on May 24, 2011 at 11:19 am

    @everyone ~ thanks for reading and commenting on the article, and thanks for the kind words about the Strength for the Journey; Forging Faith and Fitness page. The community blesses me daily!!

  28. Nina on May 24, 2011 at 11:20 am

    Once again I can only say what I taught I know people want to hold on to these body’s : it’s all right to think about the body & health : but your Soul will last for an Eternity . I met a Dr. That does inside work of course you don’t let yourself go . When you at a Funeral people always say she or he is gone : where are they ? It’s not the Glass but what’s in it .

  29. Lisa on May 24, 2011 at 11:20 am

    ok, this is not even a matter of opinion or which scripture we can use to justify what we believe. it’s about truth, and the truth is taking care of your body is an inward thing. The FRUIT of the spirit is SELF CONTROL. if you dont control …your eatting habbits you are being a glotton and that is sin. the bible talks about this every where you look. and eatting unhealthy is destroying your insides. you see it on the out side but inside is what kills you soon! it’s a disgrace to do what ever to your body just because you have a soul. God gave us a WHOLE BODY to take care of and treat right. if you are walking in the Sprit and you posess SELF CONTROL, then you will not be in bondage to over eatting. Dont fool yourselves. it’s like saying God does not care if you smoke and drink like a drunk. God does care. research what it is to be a glotton and let the Holy Spirit convict you if you struggle with this sin.

  30. Pauline on May 24, 2011 at 11:21 am

    Like I said, you can focus on being healthy while your here on earth all you want, but your body is still temporary, and will be no more when you gone. But if your heart and soul ain’t right then you ain’t right with God. Also, why is eve…ryone acting as if you can’t praise God unless your skinny or something. What if you were someone who was born blind, without legs or arms or just a body in general that is not considered “perfect” in society or maybe a illness that you could not help like many in the world have to deal with today? Will this stop you from going to God? God is everywhere and you don’t need to go to a church healthy to find him. Like he says he is the way, the truth and the light and he will lead you in the direction that is intended for you, and its for each of us to understand and follow regardless of where we are or how sick we might be, God is your strength.

    • ShalenaD.I.V.A on May 24, 2011 at 11:30 am

      @Pauline– no one said you have to be skinny to praise God. We only stressed being healthy and taking care of your body. That’s all–ntohing more.

  31. Lisa on May 24, 2011 at 11:21 am

    now will you go to hell for being over weight? the answer to that is NO, but when you want to serve God with allllll of you, you begin to go higher and higher and you serve HIM with everything…heart, mind,body, and soul

  32. Chris Burke via Facebook on April 5, 2012 at 1:07 pm

    Yes God does I should come up with a Gospel work out plan & video .

  33. via Facebook on April 5, 2012 at 1:14 pm

    Chris Burke, it just boggles my mind how many Christians don’t think so yet they end up sick and shut in in the hospital. We have to take care of our bosies.

  34. via Facebook on April 5, 2012 at 1:14 pm

    I meant bodies

  35. Chris Burke via Facebook on April 5, 2012 at 1:34 pm

    They should talk about this more good eating habits , working out .

  36. Lisa A Gore via Facebook on April 5, 2012 at 1:39 pm

    the body is the temple!

  37. Akilah Pinnock via Facebook on April 5, 2012 at 2:12 pm

    So true! Our body is our temple. God didn’t give it to us so we can abuse and neglect it. That’s why he made the dietary laws (even though everybody doesn’t believe in it I still had to reference it). Discipline has to come in all areas of life. Now I’m not perfect but I totally agree with you.

  38. Felicia Imdoinme Konan via Facebook on April 5, 2012 at 4:02 pm

    As I just came from shopping at kroger, an older well fit black gentleman began asking me why I was buying my Almondmilk, and other healthy goodies in the health food isle….he seemed suprised that we were non-dairy,gluten free, none meat or pork eaters….I told him food is like medicine……luv it…..:)

  39. via Facebook on April 5, 2012 at 7:25 pm

    So true Felicia Imdoinme Konan!

  40. Lisa Burge via Facebook on April 5, 2012 at 9:33 pm

    My body is the temple!!

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