365 Health Strategies: A Jawbone, a Lie, and an Important Health Principle
March 17th

March 17

A Jaw Bone, a Lie, and an Important Health Principle

I see a common trait in every elderly and still healthy and happy person that I know.  The principle is explained by the romance of Sam. 


Follow closely, I'll explain each part.  After you see every piece then you may see one of the most powerful health principles I know.  Examine every piece, then put the pieces together in your mind; if you see the whole picture, you will avoid pain and find health.


Here's what happened to Sam:


Sam fell in love with a woman of a different race and a different culture.  His parents were unhappy about the "mixed marriage" and urged him to not marry.  But, Sam wanted her.


He often visited her.  On one of his journeys to her home, a lion attacked him.  He killed the beast with his bare hands.  But, he didn't tell anyone what happened (those blessed with seeing powerful things come from GOD through them know that too much talking of these events brings pride which stops the flow).  Samson kept the whole thing a secret--even from his lover.


Sam's parents eventually agreed to the weeding. So Sam hosted a party for 30 of his fiancÚ's friends and neighbors.  At the party, he posed a riddle.  If they answered correctly, Sam would give them all new clothes.  If they couldn't answer correctly, all of them would give him new clothes.  The friends agreed to the wager.


Sam posed the riddle (which concerned his killing of the lion) and not one could think of the answer.  So they threatened Sam's fiancÚ with death if she didn't trick Sam into telling them the answer (some friends).  The problem--she didn't know the answer.


So, she cried and acted sad that he didn't trust her enough to share the answer-lying to him.  She then relayed the answer to her "friends."  Keep in mind, she wasn't sexually unfaithful, she wasn't doing drugs, she simply told a lie to cooperate with the other men to the ignorance of her fiancÚ.


Sam, when he realized his fiancÚ had lied to him, became angry and killed thirty friends of the friends, took the clothes off their backs, and gave the clothes to the people who had threatened his wife.  After he paid his debt (as in kept his word).  He then went to his parents' house to cool off (probably not a bad idea for someone who has this sort of temper).


So, when he cools down, he takes a present to his fiancÚ only to find her hanging out with his best man at Samson's father-in-law's house. 


This really makes him angry so he burns part of the town's crops.  The people in the town find out reason that Sam's angry is because his wife is hanging out with another man with her father's blessing--so they burn the wife and father to death (their original threat concerning the riddle).  At that time, people took a promise of marriage very seriously.


Then, the people of the town came and arrested Samson at his parent's house.


{Hang on, I promise there's an important health principle in this soap-opera drama}


So, Sam (who still loves the woman dearly) gets angry again and kills 1,000 of the men of the village using the jawbone of a donkey.


This story about Samson and his real true love (before he really got a bad attitude and started hanging out with Delilah) is found in today's Bible reading.  Here's how it relates to health:


Remember that when Benjamin Franklin listed the 13 virtues, which he thought encompassed all the virtues and the source of happiness, he listed those virtues in an order that allowed the doing of each virtue more easily because of the getting of the preceding virtue.  For example, he listed Temperance first since he thought he couldn't accomplish much of anything if he were drunk.  He listed Silence next, since he thought so much time was wasted in idle chatter that he couldn't think or find time to do much unless he learned to manage his tongue.


Tranquility came near the end of his list, followed by only Chastity and Humility.  I think most people can see how Tranquility might depend upon most of the preceding virtues.  Most would agree that Tranquility supports good health but how does Sincerity support Tranquility?  It's more than just the pain to conscious or the energy needed to cover the lie.  It's not even the anger that comes with discovery.  It's much more profound and much more damaging than that.  Much more.


When Samson discovers that his fiancÚ has shared his secret with her friends and lied to him about it, then he becomes confused about every other word spoken to him by her.  It's like a legal contract or a testimony in court, if one sentence is proven false, then the whole document, the whole testimony becomes suspect.  Every word before or after becomes a nebulous fog that cannot be held.  Since relationships rise and fall with making and keeping of promises and with the soundness of words that make the intangible real by being true, a manipulative lie becomes death to love.


You might say, "Give her a break, the woman was threatened with her life!"  Yes, she was.  An extreme example that makes the point even better that whenever there is lying there is fear.  She was afraid of the friends but also afraid that Samson could not take care of her if she told the truth.  Perhaps she was afraid that he would leave her if she even told him she was with the friends.  Remember, he had hosted a party for these men but for her to be meeting alone with them was probably not something he would have wanted.  Samson and his fiancÚ were actually breaking the current law when they met together in secret before their engagement:  so her meeting with these guys was not something Samson would have liked.  So she lied because she lived in fear.


Then you might say, "Well, wasn't she trying to keep the peace, Tranquility, by telling a lie that would somehow satisfy the friends and not be damaging to Samson if he never found out?"


Yes, she was trying to keep peace by acting out of fear with her lie.  The result: she loses in every direction:


  1. The bullies lose respect for her and realize they can intimidate her into hurting and lying to the people she loves.  Eventually, they kill her and her father anyway.
  2. She loses the power that comes from having nothing to hide, of course, but more importantly, after she begins to hide from Samson, she doesn't know if he really loves her and if he would protect her because she becomes invisible to him.  All she shows him is the lie.  She knows this, even if he doesn't-even if he never discovers her lie.  She knows he can't see all of her, so now she can't really find love with him because she knows she is invisible to him.  So, she will eventually become dissatisfied and look for affection somewhere else where she can try to show herself.  Eventually, she's likely to become fearful again, hide again, then leave again to start the whole process over.  All her life, she would look for love, never having the courage to be seen.  It's like singing in the forest.  It's like the question, "Does a tree make a noise in the forest if it falls and there's no one to hear it?"  Can a person be loved who will not allow others to see them? 
  3. Samson loses because the thing he most wants to be real in the world-the words of the woman he loves-become meaningless.  Now she can apologize and say she wanted to keep the peace--but she tries to keep peace by hiding behind her lies--in effect saying that your boundaries, husband, I will not respect and you are not the companion to keep me safe, I must collaborate with others and lie to you to feel safe.  (Ironic that she was dealing with a man that eventually would wipe out much of the town and who could have dealt easily with her bullies (emotional and physical) had she given him the chance; she did underestimate him.)


Samson, when he discovers the lie, feels like he's in an elevator going down--the most secure thing (the floor beneath him--the words of his wife) fall away leaving him grabbing to find something real.  The only reality left is his anger and his GOD.


We find that Samson still loves his wife (even after the lie) when he takes her a peace offering of a young baby goat (guess they didn't have kittens back then).  Again, he is disappointed to find her with another man.  This time he burns down the towns crops.


The healthiest people I have known, the ones who keep health and tranquility into old age, are honest to the point of courage.  They openly speak of failures, of temptations, of desires, of hopes lost and hopes found.


Most can be honest until that honesty requires conflict and risk; then they become cowards and lose love, even if their lover and friends never know--because they don't know if people would love them for who they are.  They begin to find love from those they respect the least because it's only with the ones with whom they act in darkness that they reveal who they are.


So, they gravitate more to the people with whom they share the more destructive habits and avoid the better influence.  Invisible to people in the light, to the courageous few, they gravitate to those in the dark, the ones who can see them, and follow the trail down to poor health, mental despair, and addiction.


To break the cycle, proclaim who you are.  Shout your temptations.  Ask for help when threatened.  Look the blackmailer in the eye.  Confess the hidden and ask forgiveness then live in the power and health of standing on solid ground rather than trying to jump to the heights of health and affection from the floor of a falling elevator.


From those you love, demand sincerity or at least the most vigorous attempt at sincerity.  For with Sincerity, I mean in every word.  Part of what I do with my journal is try to keep a record of every promise (big or little).  If I tell my child that I will take him to the movie, then only the doing of that keeps my words real. 


The most difficult for me is the phone.  Every message left for me and every email is an unwritten promise to return the call.  Sometimes I simply can't make the time to return 40 calls in a day and 30 emails (no exaggeration).  When this happens, I will ask my nurse to call no new patients and help me take care of the people to whom I am promised, to not accept any new people until we can find every patient that has asked and fulfill every promise. 


The keeping of every promise and the making of every word real is feat that requires the heart of Samson and the courage that comes with Peace with GOD.  But, the vow of Sincerity makes one careful with words and brings inspiring people to come stand on the solid floor of your words.  The breaking of words repels them...they jump from your falling elevator onto the first floor of stability.


I forgive the little slips as much as possible.  I find it impossible to keep up sometimes with every word.  Then, I simply back up, try to be more careful, apologize and acknowledge the slip, make corrections and move to take better care of the ones I love.


But, if you deal with someone who uses fear as the reason for their lie and skips the apology, then you're dealing with a coward (like Samson's wife).  Demand courage displayed by Sincerity and if it's not forthcoming move to find more stable ground.


Watch every word (even the promises you make to yourself).  Then reap the rewards of Tranquility and Health.

___Read Judges Chapters 8 - 14

__Walk 3 miles: actual miles _____

__ Eat 5 fruits or vegetables: actual eaten _____

__ Virtue: Tranquility-be not disturbed at trifles, or at accidents common or      unavoidable.

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Charles Runels, MD
LifeStream Medical, Inc.