Strength Training

Three of us gathered in the fellowship hall at our church, unrolled our yoga mats, and prepared to pursue improved fitness.

Basic stretching and some crunch-squat-pushup-style strength training were on the agenda.

In our pre-workout devotional, we talked about how we respond to stressful situations and about learning to “trust our gut.”

As we crunched away and I felt the burn in my gut, it occurred to me that before I can trust my gut, I need to train it.

I confess that my physical gut is not very strong.

For the past two years, I have (with rare exception) been walking two+ miles every day. I have managed to implement the discipline to get up before dawn cracks and get my walk in. So the aerobic thing, I’ve got going on. On that front, I feel healthier than I have in decades.

But “strength”?

Not so much.

This new group at church has given me some discipline to work on that physical strength.

But what about my spiritual “gut”?

I have always tried to strengthen my spiritual fitness through small group studies, worship, prayer, giving and service. I like to think I have been pretty consistent in pursuing those habits.

But this past year I added a new spiritual exercise that has helped me feel stronger and more focused.

In January, I started one of those “read the Bible in one year” reading plans.

I confess that I have at times fallen behind the “plan”, but I do appear to be on track to actually finish in the one year timeframe.

And I feel stronger spiritually.

Physical strength.

Spiritual strength.

Strength for the journey.

What we pack into our day matters.

Having the discipline to set aside some time for these strength training efforts can make a difference.

The strength, when we need it, will be there.

We’ll be able to trust our gut.

Hebrews 12:11-13   “Now, discipline always seems painful rather than pleasant at the time, but later it yields the peaceful fruit of righteousness to those who have been trained by it. Therefore lift your drooping hands and strengthen your weak knees, and make straight paths for your feet, so that what is lame may not be put out of joint, but rather be healed.”

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