Monday, November 26, 2007

A Spiritual Fitness Plan

Hope you guys had a great Thanksgiving. Ours went well--lots of good food, the kids played together well, and people enjoyed one another. Prior to getting together, my brother had told me how he had been working out 10 hours a day. I was impressed. He said that he watched almost no television, which allowed him this time to work out. And he is now in great shape.

This spurred me on to thinking about starting to work out again. I thought about it. Then the moment passed, and I felt a lot better. :) Seriously, I need to start this up again on a regular basis.

Most especially, though, we need Spiritual fitness. Here is a Spiritual fitness plan.

1. Exercise--Use your Spiritual gifts that God has given you. Paul says, "We have different gifts, according to the grace given us" (Rom. 12:6). If you feel spiritually flabby, it might be because you are not using your Spiritual gifts. These gifts are given to us as a grace--a free gift and a blessing to us, to the body of Christ, and to the world. Paul says that if you have a gift, you need to use it. I spend time with people, trying to help them discover and use their gifts for God. It is amazing some of the positive changes and joy this brings into people's lives. All of a sudden, God is all around them.

2. Eat a balanced diet--The Christian faith consists of fellowship, discipleship, evangelism, service, and worship. Many Christians only take in a diet of worship. Even the most perfect food group, if eaten to exclusion, will leave us weak and sick. Do you feel disconnected at church? Who are you eating with? Do you feel your life lacks meaning? Who are you trying to serve? Do you struggle with materialism and selfishness? How are you trying to share your faith with? These are questions that I must ask myself when I feel Spiritually weak.

3. Get a workout partner--I stink at working out alone. I have good intentions, but then work and life happen and exercise does not. Most people who consistently exercise have a workout partner. The same is true spiritually. If we try living the Christian faith and practicing Christian disciplines alone, we usually do a poor job. Find a couple of Christian friends to get together with on a weekly basis. Share what you have read in Scripture that week, who you have tried to bless, and who you are trying to share your faith with. Are you doing these on a weekly basis? If not, it may be because you have no one who encourages you or to whom you are (lovingly) accountable.

Try this Spiritual workout plan for three months, and see if you don't see some "results" in your Spiritual shape right away.


Dale Fletcher said...

Hello James,

I enjoyed your post and thought that you'd like to visit my blog and website concerning faith and health and my writings on Spiritual Exercises ... For a Healthier Life -

Have a blessed day!

James said...

Hi Dale. Thanks for the comment and for the link. I'll check out the site! I think my brother, whom I referenced in the post, would be pretty interested in this too.

God bless.

James said...

My brother, Steven, asked me to post this response:


It is interesting that I only became diligent about working out because I was in chronic lower back pain. I adopted fitness programs which have been proven to help with back pain. I think many people are the same way spiritually. They do not seek God until it hurts so much that they know only God can provide true peace. Your physical health and your spiritual heath are related. I encourage everyone I see to take care of their body. You are worth it! My goal this next year is attain a higher degree of spiritual health in my life. In order to be what God wants us to be we need to be light in a dark world; to use our bodies to the glory of God.