This is my second year, along with many other women at Long Hollow, to read through the Bible chronologically. It is so exciting to read God’s story from Genesis to Revelation and see God’s activity in the lives of mankind. Each time I read His story, I learn more about Him and His amazing grace in the redemption of mankind. I also see how hopeless I am apart from Him.
In recent weeks we’ve been reading about the tabernacle, God’s dwelling place among His chosen people in the wilderness. What a privilege for the Israelites that God so desired relationship with them that He gave them very specific instructions for building the tabernacle.
As we studied the tabernacle, I was reminded of the words in 1 Corinthians 6:19-20, “Do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit, who is in you, whom you have received from God? You are not your own; you were bought at a price. Therefore honor God with your body.” (emphasis added) Paul was specifically addressing sexual immorality here but the more I thought about my body being a temple of the Holy Spirit, I realized that I was not taking good care of my temple as it related to what I eat as well as getting proper exercise and rest. I’ve been convicted during my reading but not enough to do anything about it…until now.
Since this past week was Spring Break in Sumner County, I knew my schedule would not be as hectic as usual. So, I decided to set a goal for myself of working out at the gym 3 times. Now if you understood how much I hate to work out, you would realize what a lofty goal that was to set! Thankfully I have a workout partner who is a tad more serious than I and she keeps me accountable and focused!
Mission accomplished! Three times this week I worked out with weights and have the sore muscles to prove it! I even started being more cognizant of what I was eating because I’ve learned that it’s not just exercising but also the stuff that I put in my mouth that alters the way I feel. If I’m exercising, eating, and sleeping well, then I can tell a definite difference in my overall energy level. If I’m not doing the aforementioned things, then I am constantly in need of a nap!
Really, it comes down to the word I love to hate…discipline. Why do I hate it? Because it requires work; hard work! You see, I am not proud to admit this, but I am a GREAT procrastinator. My motto normally is “don’t do today what you can put off until tomorrow.” But one thing I know about myself is that if am undisciplined in any area of my life, most often that bleeds over into every area even my spiritual life. Does anybody know what I’m talking about?
I’m so thankful that my relationship with Christ is not dependent upon how disciplined I’ve been in my walk with Him. Don’t get me wrong; spiritual discipline is extremely important. 1 Timothy 4:8 says, “physical training is of some value, but godliness has value for all things, holding promise for both the present life and the life to come.”
Physical training is important, but spiritual discipline is more important. However, God doesn’t love me any more if I’ve spent time alone with Him or any less if I haven’t. My relationship with Christ has nothing to do with anything I’ve done but it’s all because of God’s grace. Oftentimes I’ve gotten bogged down with the “to do” list in spending time with Him rather than just enjoying Him and the fact that He loves me and calls me His beloved!
Whether training physically or spiritually, the fact of the matter is that when I neglect either, I’m the one who suffers. Although I know that God doesn’t love me any less, it still boggles my mind that the Creator of the universe wants me to spend time with Him! What a privilege I don’t want to miss!