It was a rather scathing question: “How did you feel when you were at your peak fitness?”
I twitched a bit, and then responded, “Great.” The truth is I did feel great. But that was a long time ago, in a galaxy far, far away.
In middle school and high school, I was quite the athlete. I wrestled 135-lbs and played football. At that time in my life, it was nothing to run five miles and lift weights four to five days a week. Even in college, I lifted and played basketball four days a week.
At the peak of my fitness, I felt great. I even looked great … at least for me. Then life happened. I got a full-time job. I went on to graduate school. Got married and had four kids. The list goes on. Quickly, the gym routine fell from its place of priority in my life.
A few years ago, I started going to the gym again. I started re-shaping this tired, old body into a picture of fitness (or at least that’s the goal). At first it was slow. But now I’m making real strides: I ran the Rock-and-Roll Marathon last week in Raleigh!
Our physical fitness is a great analogy of our spiritual fitness.
Do you remember back when you were really on fire for Jesus? When you read the Bible regularly? When you were consistent in your quiet times, prayers, church attendance?
Let me ask you a question. How did you feel when you were at your peak fitness … spiritually?
I know my answer. “Great!”
But then life gets in the way. We start off with great strides. We’re studying, praying, reading, soaking it all in. Then life gets in the way. We miss a workout, then two, then a week and so on.
Consider the words of Paul in 1 Corinthians 9:24-27: “Do you not know that those who run in a race all run, but only one receives the prize? Run in such a way that you may win. … I run in such a way, as not without aim; I box in such a way, as not beating the air; but I discipline my body and make it my slave, so that, after I have preached to others, I myself will not be disqualified.”
With all the hype on physical fitness, shouldn’t we give at least equal priority to our spiritual fitness? Some dedicate hours a week to the local gym … yet minutes (if that) to their spiritual wellness.
Spend some time wrestling over God’s word. Sweat over your prayer list. Endure the process of becoming a follower of Christ. Let’s get back to our spiritual gym. Why not get a workout in today?
For help, consider taking the tuition-free “How to Study the Bible” class at Carolina College of Biblical Studies. Consider us your spiritual fitness trainer.