Are you fit? An excellent question to ask yourself as we kickoff a new year.

A new year usually ushers in a new desire to get in shape, particularly physically. Physical fitness is certainly a key aspect of wellness. However, it is only one element of being fit. Mental, emotional, and spiritual fitness are also key elements of wellbeing. In 2023, I am going to focus on improving my fitness in each of these four areas.


For me, personally, the answer is no. I need to lose weight, lower my blood pressure, and improve my cardio. One objective I hope to accomplish in 2023 is improving my overall fitness level.

One thing I plan to do in order to achieve my physical fitness goal is to walk at least three miles every day, in addition to the amount I walk at work. Yes, I move a lot at work. However, I need to walk the extra steps to kickstart my overall conditioning.

Naturally, a second piece of getting physically fit revolves around diet. I need to make much better food choices than I have in recent years. Incorporating more fruits and vegetables in my diet is something that I need to do along with cutting down on meat.

What are your plans to get physically fit in 2023?


Last year, I decided to focus more on my mental health. Weekly counseling sessions are an integral part of my personal effort to maintain good mental health. Talking to someone about the things I encounter in my Christian ministry has made a significant difference in my state of mind.

Another thing that helps me keep my sanity is a new practice I started last Summer: drawing. I find that drawing has increased my concentration and attention to detail. It’s keeping my mind sharp while also giving it the necessary rest from the daily grind.

Chess is also something that I’ve included as part of my mental fitness routine for years. I frequently play games on my smartphone as well as playing the occasional game in person. I’ve found playing chess keeps my mind sharp.

Unfortunately, you can’t simply repair your mental health with a strip of duct tape.

What routine practices do you employ geared to help you stay mentally sound?

Image courtesy of Pexels
Photo by Tara Winstead


I’m going to get better at dealing with my emotions. My counselor indicated that this seems to be an area I can grow in. I think because of negative experiences tied to my expressing my emotions, I’ve learned to suppress them. This is something I believe I’ve grappled with all my life.

How is your emotional health during these highly uncertain, tumultuous times?


I’m planning on being more intentional regarding my time with God. Terri and I are working through a Bible reading plan that will have us reading through Scripture more slowly. How slow? One chapter a week. We start on Sunday and then we plan to sit down for a time of sharing what we learned from our reading the following Saturday. Our prayer is that we grow deeper to God and closer together as well.

What steps are you planning to take in order to grow deeper spiritually in the year ahead?

Rainer Bantau
The Devotional Guy™

I know the Lord is always with me. I will not be shaken, for he is right beside me.

Psalm 16:8 (New Living Translation)

Friend, are you fit for life or fit to be tied?

This is an excellent question to ask yourself as we kickoff a new year.

Friend, I pray that this post offers you some inspiration and encouragement to improve your overall wellbeing in 2023. As we begin a new year, it is important to reassess where we are physically, mentally, emotionally, and spiritually. I pray that whatever your goals are for the new year that 2023 is filled with a multitude of God’s blessing. May your walk with the Lord grow deeper as you continue faithfully pursuing Him.

May your soul rise up and meet the Lord daily as the day rises to meet the sun. 

Many, many blessings,

Rainer Bantau
The Devotional Guy™

#ShaneandShane #You’veAlreadyWon


The Devotional Guy™ Rainer Bantau ©2023



  1. The mantra of mechanics is to use duct tape, and if it still broken, to use more duct tape

    But, you’vr hit upon an area of life where a quick fix simply doesnt work.

    Our mental health needs invested time, intentionally applied.

    And since prevention always trumps a cure, protecting our mental health (like your playing chess) becomes ever more important.

    Some good pointers here for a new year !!

    Liked by 3 people

  2. This is a great post. You are right, many think about their physical health at this time of year. But they often overlook mental, emotional, and spiritual health. I definitely need to make adjustments in all the areas as well. I am not consistent with exercise. I need a better routine. For mental health, I need to slow down and not allow too much on my plate. The pressure of everything gets me. I like your ideas of drawing and playing chess. I do have a Bible that allows for coloring, doodling, etc. I don’t normally use that Bible, but perhaps it’s time. Thanks for the inspiration. For emotional, I am hoping more prayer will help me there. And for spiritual, I will be reading in the New Testament and I have a couple of Bible studies lined up as well. I also read a lot of Christian non-fiction books. The Bible reading plan you will be doing sounds amazing. Anyway, I am hoping these things will help. Thank you so much for forcing me to sit down and think this through! Blessings!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Thank you for reading my post and engaging with what I wrote. Yes, we need to consider prevention strategies more readily rather than waiting for something to break. Unfortunately, sometimes when something breaks inside us it cannot be repaired. I see this happening in people every day. Perhaps, these preventative measures are foreign to us in the Western world. I’m not sure. But, I do know that for me to improve my condition in each of these areas I must intentionally take steps to make them better. No one else can do it, but you. Thanks again for your encouragement and support. Blessings.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Thank you my friend. It sounds like you have the tools and a plan to incorporate them in your life for your own wellbeing. That’s awesome! It’s a long race and we must fuel our wellness if we are going to finish well. Thanks for reading. I’m happy you enjoyed my post. Blessings.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Nancy and I have committed in the new year to getting more exercise and eating more sensibly. However, we both realize it needs to be something we can sustain long term.

    Emotionally, I need to provide more buffer zones in my life, stopping points to reassess what I’m doing. Frankly, I spend too much time looking at screens!

    Spiritually, I need to return to reading some of the great devotional writers I used to read every day, Oswald Chambers is one of them.

    Hobby wise I need to come back to my music: revisiting and writing more songs to the Lord.

    Thank you for asking me to assess these goals, Rainer. It’s good! God’s best to you and Terry.

    Liked by 2 people

  6. These are good goal, David, that you shared in your comments. Yes, we all need to get away from our screens more. So much of our lives seems to be tied up in them or at least involve them.
    I agree-whatever we decide to do for the benefit of our wellbeing needs to be sustainable. I’m glad my question provoked you to take a moment to consider your current condition. Thanks for reading my post and sharing your goals. Blessings.

    Liked by 2 people

  7. So very true

    The west is always in a rush…..we go places because our diaries tell us to via our phones….moments for personal space can be incredibly hard to find!

    Prevention is so much easier…

    And church has a notorious record for guilting us into service, that is not our calling, thus resulting in us walking in our own strength .

    One word we need to embrace in the west is the word “no”.

    I had a pastor teach me that when I was 15.

    He told me to say no to the very next thing i was asked to do – regardless of who or what was asking – in church, just because we always need to feel free to say no.

    I did.

    And have done ever since.

    An important lesson, but one I’ve remembered well!

    I’m gonna save that thought for a teaching video when we get our website switched, and I can get back to recording fresh material.

    It seems like a theme I’m seeing all over the place, when the simple answer to the problem is so frequently just those two tiny letters…

    Liked by 2 people

  8. I love “And church has a notorious record for guilting us into service, that is not our calling, thus resulting in us walking in our own strength .” Spot on. Church is hard to figure out sometimes. It’s easy to loose sight of the mission due to fulfilling someone else’s agenda.
    I look forward to your future lesson. Blessings.

    Liked by 1 person

  9. Thanks Rainer

    I’m looking forward to getting back in front of a camera and recording some fresh matetial….1st Feb feels a long way away right now

    Liked by 1 person

  10. Enjoy the journey. February 1 will be here before you know it. 😊

    Liked by 1 person

  11. At least it’s not next year anylonger 😉🤣😁

    Liked by 1 person

  12. Great questions here! I’ve got the walking part down. I averaged (on the heart app) 4.2 miles a day in 2022 (4.0 miles/day in 2021). Most days I walk morning and night, and it does take creative dedication. But it also helps me mentally. The direction of the nation and the world stress me out. Walking, and talking to God helps. I still need to work on all of these areas. It’s hard, isn’t it? One day at a time and we can make progress!! God Bless you and your family and friends in 2023!

    Liked by 1 person

  13. Ranier, I am pleased to read this discussion from last month. Like you, I am working to pivot my life’s interactions for a healthier lifestyle. Proper nutrition (I’m Type 2 diabetic), regular exercise ( walking outside and indoor biking), and more time with God’s Word (my wife and I are reading together a devotional every weeknight).

    Liked by 1 person

  14. I am glad you found this post helpful. Spending time in the Word with your bride is a wonderful investment in your marriage. Blessings.

    Liked by 1 person

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