The most well-known definition of health was described by the World Health Organization (WHO): “Health is a state of complete physical, mental and social well-being and not just the absence of illness and ailments.”
At the same time, there are various other definitions of health. Here are a few examples:
• According to T. Parson (medical sociologist): “Health is a state of optimal performance of an individual, for the effective fulfillment of the roles and tasks for which it has been socialized (socialization = process of classification into society, adoption of norms and values).”
• Hurrelmann (1990) defines health as: “State of the objective and subjective state of being of a person, which is given when this person is in the physical, psychological and social areas of their development in accordance with their own possibilities and goals and the given external Living conditions. “
• “Health is a problem-solving and emotional regulation ability that maintains or restores a positive mental and physical condition – especially positive self-esteem – and a supportive network of social relationships.”
Health is very important and is the greatest good for many people. “The main thing is healthy”, “Stay healthy”, “Health is the most important thing” are statements that you hear often, for example when a child is born, at birthday parties or in the current corona crisis.
But is health really the main thing? Let’s say a group of people is sitting together and these statements are heard by someone who is not healthy. How will this person feel? The main thing is missing, so to speak. Then what is his life worth, what is the meaning of it? At that moment, the person affected will probably feel inferior.
In the Bible, in the Gospels, we read about many of the healings that Jesus did. We can read a story from the Gospel of Mark that showed me what it really is about in chapters 2.1-12:
Jesus heals a paralytic
A few days later, Jesus returned to Capernaum. The news of his arrival quickly spread across the city.  2 It wasn’t long before the house in which he lived was overcrowded with visitors, so that no one had more space, not even outside the door. And he announced God’s word to them. 3 There came four men carrying a paralyzed man on a mat. 4 They couldn’t get through the crowd to Jesus, so they covered the roof over him. Then they let the patient down on his mat through the opening. 5 When Jesus saw their faith, he said to the paralyzed man: “My son, your sins are forgiven.” 6 But some scribes who sat there thought: 7 “How can he say such a thing? It’s blasphemy! Only God alone can forgive sins! ”8 Jesus knew what was going on in them and said,“ Why do you have such thoughts in your heart? 9 Is it easier to say to the paralyzed: Your sins are forgiven or stand up, take your mat and go? 10 I will prove to you that the Son of Man has the authority to forgive sins on earth. “And he turned to the paralyzed man and said to him: 11” Get up, take your mat and go home, because you are healed ! ”12 The man jumped up, picked up the mat, and made his way through the astonished crowd. Then they all praised God. “We have never seen anything like it!” They cried.
The man in the story was paralyzed and therefore limited, he was not capable, he couldn’t do many things. Was he missing the main thing? He was sick, but he had something that is more important. He had relationships. He had four friends, very good friends. He is not alone. They bring him to Jesus because they knew that only Jesus could heal. They overcome all obstacles and cannot be stopped by the crowd, they find a way to Jesus. They had a strong belief. Wonderful when you have friends like that.
What did Jesus do when he had the paralyzed in front of him? He saw the faith of the paralyzed friends. Jesus did not immediately cure the illness, the physical impairment of the paralyzed. The first thing Jesus did was to forgive his sin. Sin means separation from God, and thus forgiveness restored the relationship between God and the paralyzed. Much more important than illness or health is the question of being or not being healthy for Jesus. Reconciliation with God heals the paralytic again, even though his physical symptoms are still there. The fellowship with God is restored and there is nothing left to separate the paralyzed from God’s love. Not even illness or death. Sickness and death came into our world through sin, but Jesus died on the cross for human sin and we are healed through his wounds, even if there is still sickness and sin. Belief in his work of salvation frees us. Sickness and death can no longer harm us, we know that we will remain connected to God forever. For God, health is not the main thing, he wants healthy people who have a relationship with him. Knowing that you are loved unconditionally, that you recognize him, that you are saved makes a person’s life valuable and meaningful, whether healthy or sick.
In the end, Jesus frees the paralytic from his illness, he works a miracle and heals him. So he made him whole healthy. We can expect everything from Jesus, he has the power to forgive and heal sins. In any case, we experience salvation when we encounter Jesus, even when we encounter illness and suffering, his presence makes us salvation. We don’t have to be afraid of sickness, even if sickness hits us and we die in the worst case, we have the certainty that we will be in communion with God forever, what could be more important?
I would like to give you the life of Nick Vujicic from Australia as an example. He was born without arms and legs. He struggled with his identity until adolescence and wanted to commit suicide several times. An encounter with God changed everything and healed him. Not in the sense that he healed him physically, but the relationship with God means much more to him than health. Nick Vujicic says:
“A miracle revealed God’s strength in my weakness. Because it is more powerful to see a man with arms and legs smile than someone who has been miraculously healed. ”
“If God would give me the choice to be born without arms and legs to save even one soul, I would say: Do it!”
Nick Vujicic leads a deeply grateful, happy and meaningful life today and has become a blessing for many people through his lectures in which he tells of his life and about God.
In conclusion, I would like to summarize again: Not the main thing is healthy, but
The main thing is to be loved and to love
The main thing is to be reconciled with God
The main thing is being in a relationship with God
The main thing is being safe
And importantly, when we know God, when we are reconciled with him and live in a relationship, when we are saved, do not let us forget our friends. Let us become like the friends of the paralyzed who lead their friend to Jesus. In our environment there are many people who do not know Jesus, who do not know the way to him, people who can no longer believe due to bad experiences or who think that they do not need God. But they also need healing and Jesus can heal them. We can pray for them, tell about Jesus and bring them to Jesus.
“Because before you were dead because of your guilt and because your old self determined you . But God made you alive with Christ. He has forgiven us all ”Colossians 2:13
“I am convinced that nothing can separate us from his love. Neither death nor life, neither angels nor powers, neither our fears in the present nor our worries about the future , not even the powers of hell can separate us from God’s love. 39 And if we were high above the sky or if we were in the deepest depths of the ocean , nothing and nobody in all of creation can separate us from the love of God that appeared in Christ Jesus our Lord. ”Romans 8 , 38-39
“On his own body, he carried our sins up to the cross so that we are dead for sin and can live for justice. You have been healed through his wounds! ”1 Peter 2:24
“He will wipe away all her tears, and there will be no death, no grief, no crying, no pain. Because the first world with all its calamity has passed forever. ”“ Revelation 21: 4