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Spiritual Disciplines: Don’t Skip Leg Day

via TJC

"Everyone who competes in the games goes into strict training. They do it to get a crown that will not last, but we do it to get a crown that will last forever. Therefore I do not run like someone running aimlessly; I do not fight like a boxer beating the air. No, I beat my body and make it my slave so that after I have preached to others, I myself will not be disqualified for the prize” - 1 Corinthians 9:25-27

In a crowded gym, the treadmills are full. The ellipticals are humming. The bench press, the curling bars, and all the glamor muscle machines are taken. However, there always seems to be one place where there is no line: the squat rack. Many men who incorporate weight lifting into their training are inclined to skip “leg day”. Leg day hurts, but later, you take those stairs two at a time and kneel down to pick something up without trouble. Leg day is not for the prideful; it’s for the diligent.

Standing in front of the mirror in the locker room, who is that old dude? That doesn’t stop me from making the most of things: comb my hair, brush my teeth, shave, etc. I get my bag organized. On my best days, my face is flush, and my mind is right. I’m ready to meet friends or fr-enemies.

If my body requires daily care to remain clean and healthy, how much more does my soul require spiritual disciplines to stay aligned with God's will?

Spiritual disciplines are the exercises we engage in to train our spirits, deepen our relationship with God, and grow in holiness. These include prayer, a direct conversation with God; Bible study, where we dive into the Word to understand His will; fasting, which refocuses our dependence from the physical to the spiritual; and worship, a dedicated time to honor God with our hearts and voices.

Just as an athlete cannot compete effectively without rigorous daily practice, I cannot hope to live a victorious Christian life without spiritual discipline. Each discipline serves to sculpt our spiritual muscles, ensuring that we are not just running aimlessly but purposefully striding towards the high calling of God in Christ Jesus—two stairs at a time! 

One of our core teachings involves a commitment to spiritual disciplines. The world sees discipline as punishment. The world system wants us lazy—in lines for fast food, tapping our credit cards at gas pumps, and clicking on Netflix watchlists filled with junk.

The Bible views spiritual disciplines as a sign of love and a means for blessing (Hebrews 12:6). My soul isn’t standing in line for the world system - I’m jumping that fence and running to Jesus!

Embrace and study spiritual disciplines not as burdens but as joyful exercises, tools to help us run our race effectively.

Daily Battle Order: Imagine this: It’s early in the morning, and as you stand in front of the mirror, you reflect not only on your physical appearance but also on your spiritual state. You wonder, "Am I just as prepared in my spirit as I am in my body?"

1 Start Simple: Choose one spiritual discipline that you’ve neglected or never tried. Commit to engaging in this discipline for at least 10 minutes a day over the next week.

2 Reflect and Journal: At the end of each day, spend a few minutes reflecting on how this discipline is impacting your walk with God. Write down any insights or changes you notice in your thoughts, attitudes, or behaviors.

3 Share and Encourage: Talk to a friend or mentor about your experiences with this discipline. Encourage each other in your spiritual exercises, sharing what works and what doesn’t, just as athletes share tips and strategies.



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