Summer 2024

Daily Devotional: Friday, January 14 - Spiritual Fitness

“For 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.” — 1 Timothy 4:8

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Physical fitness has several benefits: reduced risk of heart attack, better weight management, lower blood pressure and cholesterol, and stronger bones and muscles. I love that the Bible even recognizes the value in physical training and activity.

The No. 1 reason or excuse people make for not exercising is, “I don’t have the time.” Basically, people are saying they have more important things to do. We all have the same amount of time in our days, our weeks and our months. We all get 24 hours in our day and seven days in our week. It’s all about what we choose to do with that time we are given.

I observed just two short years ago, during our COVID-19 quarantine and “shut down,” the amount of walkers and bikers. All of a sudden, people had a little more time on their hands. Businesses were shut down and our schools started distance-learning. Our rhythms and routines were altered drastically. It seems as though everyone, including myself, had a little more time to focus on our fitness and health. I was able to go for a jog in the middle of the afternoon or a long bike ride in the evening.

Those who make physical fitness a priority will see results. The problem is that many of us focus on the physical aspects of our fitness while ignoring the spiritual ones.

God wants to change us on the inside. He sees our hearts. So sure, physical fitness has its benefits and does have value, but God is more concerned about our spiritual fitness. Do we take the time to exercise our spiritual muscles? Do we have the self-discipline to get into God’s Word daily? Do we take the time to really digest what we read? Do we then apply it to our lives? God wants doers.

How’s your prayer life? Do you pray? Is it shallow? Do you only pray to God when you need something or you have an emergency? It’s so easy to treat God like our genie in the bottle and we want to rub the lamp for our wishes … I mean prayer requests. God wants us to have fellowship with Him — to talk to Him about our hurts, our wants, our needs, our fears, our ups, our downs. Sometimes we are intimidated to be real with God and really open up and be honest. Remember, He is God and He already knows.

I’m learning that praying is not just talking to God, but actually listening. And to truly listen, we must be silent — which gives us one of the greatest anagrams: LISTEN — SILENT.

Physical fitness is good and has some value, but spiritual fitness has way more!

— Jim Good

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