I skipped going to the gym for two weeks. I kept making excuses: I was too busy, I would go tomorrow, and on and on. And finally, two weeks had passed, while dust starts to collect on my running shoes. When I actually go to the gym, I enjoy it. The more I go, the stronger I become: my flexibility increases, I sleep better, and my eating is better. And when I don’t go, I can feel it in my left shoulder and in my right hip. I’m achier, tighter and, therefore, grouchier. And the first time back, it’s a lot harder to work out. My body remembers how to do the exercise, it’s just creakier. I sweat globs. I can’t catch my breath. I can’t lift as heavy weights and I feel wrecked by the time I’m done my workout.
So why do I make excuses and not go? Why don’t I learn my lesson?
My gym workout is like my personal worship time. Some days I am a lot better about spending time in prayer and reading my Bible. When I am accountable to others, like my Facebook group, I am more likely to prioritize my time with God. It’s just like when I make sure to book time with a trainer or meet a friend at the gym; I wouldn’t stand them up so why would I stand up my heavenly Father? And when I spend those moments early in the morning, my day is a lot more focused. I am stronger, ready to meet the challenges of the day. I have endurance for another busy day ahead of me.
But if I only do it a few times a month, I won’t become stronger- it has to be a lifetime commitment. I can’t make excuses because there will be obstacles in my life. I need to be ready, strong enough for those times. And in times of pleasure, I need to continue “working out” so I will remain strong. I need to be reminded to “start running—and never quit! No extra spiritual fat. Keep [my] eyes on Jesus, who both began and finished this race we’re in. Study how he did it. Because he never lost sight of where he was headed—that exhilarating finish in and with God—he could put up with anything along the way: Cross, shame, whatever. And now He’s there, in the place of honour, right alongside God. When [I] find [myself] flagging in faith, go over that story again, item by item, that long litany of hostility he plowed through. That will shoot adrenaline into [my] soul” (Hebrews 12:1-3, The Message).
So tomorrow I will go to the gym to end my work day but I will start my day with my heavenly Trainer!