Wednesday, October 22, 2014

I Need To Go For A Run...

"Hey hon, can you hurry home?  I need to go for a run."
"Son, can you get your brother ready for school?  I need to go for a hike."
"Do you have plans for us in the morning?  Because I REALLY need to go to the gym."

Those are typical statements my family has grown used to over the years.  And on rare occasions, after not getting my way and whining like a child, I stop to think of how ridiculous I must sound; my requests so twisted at times that my workout agenda trumps family time, important ranch work, and most of all, time with God.

Three times this week, yes THREE, I've been met with these verses.  I do believe God is asking for my attention:

"...Spend your time and energy in training yourself for spiritual fitness.  Physical exercise has some value, but spiritual exercise is much more important, for it promises a reward in both this life and the next.  This is true, and everyone should accept it."   - 1 Timothy 4:7-9

And these are the footnotes that follow:

"Are you in shape both physically and spiritually?  In our society, much emphasis is placed on physical fitness, but spiritual health is even more important.  Our physical health is susceptible to disease and injury, but faith can sustain us through these tragedies... Are you developing your spiritual muscles?"

I'm challenged by these words.  Even among Christian friends, my social plate is heaped with talk of the gym, and races, and competitions, and the next best diet plan... and lightly seasoned with Jesus.  Don't get me wrong, I love all of those things, minus the diet plans, but Jesus has to come first, and very often doesn't.

What if tomorrow I was as distraught over missing a morning of time in God's Word 
as I was over missing a morning at the gym? 

What if I would admit that it's actually a case of selfishness and not need 
that fuels the grumpy girl who hasn't worked out in a few days? 

I guess it's pretty simple.  What if I let God come first each and every day, in ALL things, not just the areas I choose?  
What if we all did that?

It occurred to me tonight that, despite my attempts to convince Keith otherwise, God probably didn't design us with bodies that would require so much physical upkeep that our relationship with Him, and with our families, would have to be sacrificed.

Just to clarify, an anti-workout campaign this is not.  Not one bit.  Because we are also called to take care of our physical bodies; we can definitely serve God more effectively in a body that is strong and healthy.  But for those of us who love to work out, we have to remember that we live in a world of overindulgence, and it isn't limited to "unhealthy" things like over-eating and over-spending.  We may be guilty of it, too.

I don't plan to give up on running, hiking, or the gym anytime soon. In fact, chances are good that I'll be out there doing one of the three tomorrow.  But one thing is certain... I'll be setting aside the time to get in a spiritual workout first.


  1. Thank you! I needed to hear this today!

    1. As did I! :) Thankful for the way God brings such important things to our attention!