Thursday, June 19, 2008

Running lesson #5


“I buffet my body and make it my slave…” 1 Cor. 9:27

A recent loss of 10 pounds has revealed veins, abs, and an overall muscle definition that I have never before seen, at least not in my mirror. Before you think this is an exercise in narcissism let me assure you it isn’t. While it is nice to be in the best shape of your life at a time when many of your contemporaries haven’t seen their feet since the first Bush was President; the reality is that when your age begins with a 4 (or more) all signs of progress are more about vitality than vanity.

The improvements were both unintentional and intentional. They were both unexpected and planned. Huh? What I mean is that, while I did not set out to lose weight, I did intentionally set and follow the plan that brought it about. I decided on a fairly rigorous fitness plan that includes lifting weights 3 days per week and running another 3-4 days per week. After sticking to this plan for several months I noticed something happening around my waist. And now if I don’t cinch up my belt to the last hole I may be embarrassed!

The nicest part is that these are just the fringe benefits. The best part is happening on the inside. My endurance is up and my blood pressure is down. My energy has been raised while my pulse has been lowered. The lean muscle mass is up and the body fat percentage is down. All these are signs of good health – the ultimate physical goal. Set a goal, stick to the plan, and enjoy the results.

The same has obvious, and more important, spiritual application. What is our ultimate spiritual goal? Do we have a plan to help attain that goal? Are we willing to stick to it even when it would be easier to quit? Are we giving something to the accomplishment of that goal every day? If we can answer these questions in the right way, then we will also experience the fringe benefits too.

Remember that the best things are happening on the inside. Benefits such as more peace and contentment. A better outlook on life. A heavenly perspective that allows us to see beyond the temporary. The joy of forgiveness – both received and extended. The blessings of living a selfless life. The list goes on and on and I encourage you to make your own list.

The principle is simple Set a goal, stick to the plan, and enjoy the results.
You can do it!

Gotta run!

No comments: