This past week, I did something I have never done before. I rolled out of bed early in the morning, pulled on my leggings and hardly worn trainers and I hit the gym. Some minutes after 7 o’clock, I was hard at work getting my blood pumping. Believe me when I say I was on that treadmill like white on rice.
Monday, I walked around feeling like the baddest boss there ever was. Tuesday I was sorely limping around campus. Wednesday my aching thigh muscles left me walking around like a gestating elephant. Thursday and I was starting to feel a bit like Beyonce. Friday and I was lifting my shirt up before my mirror convinced that I could see some rock-hard abs forming. (But really, though! Where my tablettes de chocolat were at?)
Yesterday, while skyping my friend Alheri, I shared with her how proud I was to have completed an entire week in the gym without fail. I told her how good it felt to have been consistent, and how addictive it is already proving to be. The conversation shifted to something else and after a while we fell into our occasional silence.
“How is your devotional time with God going?” she asked me simply.
My answer was a jumble of uhms and likes and euphemisms. We didn’t dwell on the subject for too long, but the moment she asked that question, albeit casually, I was plunged into reflection that has spilled over into today.
I was so proud to boast about my physical exercise. I am coming to place importance on how well I take care of myself, and how I steward my physical body, so I was very happy about this. However, the moment Alheri asked me that question, it all seemed extremely futile to me. In that moment, and onwards, a question has been ringing in my head.
What is Important to Me?
The way that I see it, this is a question that can be answered in examining the things that I invest myself in. While I think it’s a little bit impractical to say that my love for God should be reflected proportionally, i.e. in the amount of time I spend reading my bible, praying or serving in the church vs the amount of time I spend doing other things, I think that the level of discipline and commitment I channel to my relationship with God speaks volumes. It speaks volumes about who I am, and what/who my heart beats for.
Isn’t it so easy to get caught up, and completely enraptured by so many things that sound so incredibly important that we neglect our very relationship with God? That time with him is time left-over from other activities? A maybe that may or may not materialize?
In thinking about all this, I read Matthew 6:19-23. In the first part Jesus said;
19 “Don’t store up treasures here on earth, where moths eat them and rust destroys them, and where thieves break in and steal. 20 Store your treasures in heaven, where moths and rust cannot destroy, and thieves do not break in and steal. 21 Wherever your treasure is, there the desires of your heart will also be.
I always say that my faith in God is the most important part of my life, but if it doesn’t seem to be reflected in the way that my priorities are laid out, then something is off. More, in reflecting about what the bible places importance on, I seem to be falling incredibly short.
How thankful I am of God’s unending grace and mercy that catches me in moments like these. I have come to the conclusion that I want to be able to boast that I truly know God more than I want a ripped bod (ha!). There is absolutely nothing wrong with sweating in the gym, and I will carry on doing it, but nothing will take away the time I spend in communion with the Lord.
36 For what shall it profit a man, if he shall gain the whole world, and lose his own soul? 37 Or what shall a man give in exchange for his soul?
Mark 8:36 (KJV)
Friends, let us set our minds on things above, and not on earthly things. The value of the lives we live exceeds how well we live in our physical bodies. These bodies, the earth, and everything in it will pass away. So let us grow in the Lord. Let us seek his face. The glorious thing is that he has promised never to leave us nor forsake us. He is with us even until the end of the ages.
7 I can never escape from your Spirit!
I can never get away from your presence!
8 If I go up to heaven, you are there;
if I go down to the grave, you are there.
9 If I ride the wings of the morning,
if I dwell by the farthest oceans,
10 even there your hand will guide me,
and your strength will support me.
11 I could ask the darkness to hide me
and the light around me to become night—
12 but even in darkness I cannot hide from you.
To you the night shines as bright as day.
Darkness and light are the same to you.
Psalm 139:7-12 (NLT)
Have a fantastic week!
Featured Image from here.