Friday, June 26, 2015
Attending religious services or church is one of the most common ways that people seek to enhance their relationship with God.
This has also demonstrated a positive effect on health and well-being. One study found that attending religious services can increase the lifespan by an average of seven years for whites and potentially 14 years for African-Americans.43
An additional study of over 100,000 people done at Johns-Hopkins University found that attending religious services on a weekly basis reduced the risk of death the following year by almost 50%.44
Another group of researchers found that adults who reported weekly attendance were both likely to improve health behaviors and maintain good ones than those who did not attend church. The researchers also noted that attending religious services was associated with significantly lower smoking rates, higher levels of physical activity, less depression, more personal relationships, and longer, healthier, marriages.45
When we worship, pray, and study our Bibles with others in a community of trust, we gain tremendous social support. Many times people don’t have friends outside of church. Families are scattered all over the world, people move often and homes are broken and so this connection with others is especially important.
Fellowship has a profound positive impact on our well-being (a topic covered thoroughly in the lesson on Interpersonal Relationships.)