I got out of the runner’s block slowly with this book, The Seven Disciplines of Wellness by Dr. Surina Ann Jordan. But once I got past the second discipline, I was like an Usain Bolt. I could hardly put down this book.
In fact, I found out the best time to read it was early in the morning. I devoured it during my morning devotions when I realized it helped to set the tone for my day. I read it in the coffee shop waiting for a friend, enjoying the fact that she was late so I could have the opportunity to read more. I even chose reading it rather than joining my husband and dog for a Friday Netflix movie. I told them I was nearby while I was selfishly enjoying the moments I was experiencing with this book. There were times I felt profound peace as I read it, warmly embraced with a feeling of wellness. Much of this book was a reminder of things I already knew; nonetheless, it was refreshing in its confirmations and affirmations.
Dr. Surina organizes health and wellness under seven disciplines. The fact that she uses the word “disciplines” is a strong indication of what is to come. Her no-nonsense but loving approach tells you she means business. And by business I am referring to the seriousness of the matter: Health and wellness is a matter of life and death. Imagine someone like the actor Samuel Jackson yelling these lines: “People wake up! We’re in a war here!” Of course, if you’re familiar with Samuel Jackson you know then that those words would not quite ring out in that way, but you get the point. If you’re thinking that health and wellness is simply about eating healthy and staying fit, then you have only gotten half of the truth.
Wellness is actually a spiritual battle. Dr. Jordan makes a very strong biblical case for this. Health and wellness, as God intended it, is dependent on us remaining connected to Him 24/7: “It is a 24-hour, seven-day-a week process that ensures a peaceful, holistic existence” (59). Now, once you get past disciplines 1 and 2—which is a discipline in reading—the rest is a sweet homerun. The information is practical, straightforward, common sense wisdom.
What amazes me most about Dr. Jordan’s book is the wisdom regarding wellness that she reveals from the Bible. Many believers have failed to see this wisdom. Basically, Dr. Jordan makes an urgent appeal to the church to listen and take heed. You’re losing a war because you’re unfit and unhealthy. The church is a military with unfit soldiers who are not handling the everyday stress and the changes in the culture well. “Living well is a lifestyle and a battle. Our life, however, must exist outside of the diseased culture,” she says (28).
Considering the size of this book, it is a wonder that Dr. Surina is able to cover so much material concerning the lifespan of a human being. Every page is condensed and rich with information. Her twenty years of experience as a consultant, health coach, vegan chef, and public health advocate give her a holistic perspective. Her quest for truth, wholeness, and life leads her to find a path of wellness that bridges Scripture and science. “Wake up, people! Wake up, church! This is a book for you.”