What would you do if you received a $150 gift certificate to a local spa?
If you’ve never been to one before your first reaction might be, “Hmmm…. What is this and what am I going to do with it? Wonder if I can cash it in for money?!” Once you get past the initial surprise and perhaps flip through the accompanying brochure about the spa services offered you may start to face a whole new dilemma. Is there a service that you would enjoy and that would truly benefit you? AND – can you get past your own feelings that this is self-serving pampering – a luxury that is foreign to your lifestyle and perhaps even in conflict with your faith. Don’t be too hasty. Consider how your trip to a spa can be a very effective way to strength your faith journey.
Are you too busy with work, the demands of family and friends, responsibilities and busy-tasks? How stressed, depressed, under-pressure and exhausted have you felt lately? We tend to load our lives with expectations, routines and chores and then let other people pile on additional commitments and opportunities until we are way beyond “maxed”. You know the feeling. The light at the end of the tunnel eludes you. As a result your diet is whacked-out and exercise is either non-existent or relegated to a tightly scheduled slot that can be bumped if necessary. Moreover you lack a deeper satisfaction in life. Your relationship with those most important to you isn’t what you want it to be. On top of that your relationship with God is rather blah.
When you go to a spa you’re being intentional about how you are using your time. It is in fact a Sabbath practice. You’re setting apart a portion of eternity. How you use that time will reflect on the rest of your life.
WHAT SERVICE IS RIGHT FOR ME?
Once you’ve made a commitment to take time you’ll want to consider the many spa options that are now available. In addition to traditional facial and massage services there are a wide range of other specialty services identified by the Day Spa Association. They include a large list:
Acupuncture, anti-aging, ayurvedic treatment, cellulite treatments, corporate connection, exercise and fitness, herbal detoxification, hydrotherapy and aquatherapy, IPL/LED skin rejuvenation, laser hair removal, color/light/sound, lymphatic drainage, microdermabrasion, non-surgical facelift, nutrition/weight loss, organic/ eco spa, oxygen therapy, permanent make-up, maternity care, progressive skin peels, reflexology, sauna/steam/vapor, spa cuisine, stone therapy, sunless tanning and tooth whitening.
Additionally members of the International Medical Spa Association provide services in several categories. They include:
Skin rejuvenation, anti-aging treatments, youth enhancements, radio frequency and skin tightening treatments, non-surgical treatments and spider vein treatments.
So many options can be overwhelming. Some of the services are a result of the demand created by a culture that is fixated on selfish attitudes and desires. Many of the services however have incredible value in helping you to improve your journey through life. That in turn can transform your ability to positively impact the lives of others and fulfill your mission in life.
Only you can choose the services that are right for you. The following questions may help as you decide:
- What pains or discomforts keep me from being at my peek?
- What specific ways do I want to serve others and what spa treatments and benefits will enable me to do that?
- What physical qualities do I want to improve to make me a more attractive representation of my faith?
THE NUTS AND BOLTS OF SPA-FAITH CONNECTIONS
So can today’s spa experience really enhance your faith journey? Consider this, some of the most poignant portrayals of humility, compassion and communion are foot washings in the Bible. Jesus washed his closest follower’s feet.
Personal care through physical contact is a powerful form of individual ministry. It has spiritual value to both the person who gives and the person who receives it. Your spa experience can be far more than a deep massage. It is a submission of will where you acquiesce to a deeper spiritual encounter.
Your spa experience can be spiritual communication. Make it a time of prayer. Begin by clearing your thoughts and removing all distractions. In a spa context you can learn to listen not just with your ears but with your mind, spirit and even your senses. Prayer, talking with and listening to God, can be particularly powerful before, during and after your spa experience.
You can also nurture your faith by making your spa experience a form of worship. Using music that leads your spirit into a time of devotion easily does this. Worship occurs when you show respect, admire beauty, commit to devotion and adoration.
Your spa experience will undoubtedly be a very physical encounter. Detoxifying, sweating, relaxing muscles, opening your senses and realigning your body all will physically rejuvenate you. But it does much more. God made your physical body to be a natural and powerful portal to your spirit. When you don’t allow time for that or you outright deny yourself that connection you faith lacks the depth God intends for it to have.
Going to a spa will do more than sooth aches and pains. It gives you the time to individually nurture your faith. Now, go find a spa. Then before you go, do some intentional planning to make it a uniquely spiritual experience.
More related articles on this topic from