Echoes of P90X In My Daily Walk

Were you one of those women who determined to exercise more in 2010 than you did in 2009? Danny and I started the P90X workout program for the third time last week. I get up every morning and exercise, then watch what I eat during the day. And we're more determined than ever to get in shape, keep our weight managed and eat a healthy diet.

There are a lot of cross-overs between the exercise world and our Christian lives. I've found that many of the same things that I've heard Tony Horton say on our DVDs are things that I say to myself and read in the Bible when I'm improving my walk with God.

* Don't just go through the motions. Kenpo karate is my favorite workout, and I only get to do it on Saturday mornings. Theoretically I could stand there and swing my arms around a little and say that I did the routine, but I'll only get the results I want if I keep up the intensity. Our Christian walk is exactly the same way - we can go sit on the pew on Sunday morning and maybe read some Scripture during the week. Or we can be in church every time the door is open, we can reach out to our sisters in Christ during the week and we can actively study God's Word. The results (and rewards from God) are completely reliant on the heart we put into it.

* Do what works for you. I have to modify several routines because I have asthma. I suppose I could try to follow every move the folks do on the video, but Danny would have to take me to the emergency room before work every day. Instead, I work to the level I can, I take more breaks and I stop when I feel an attack coming on. There are aspect of your service for God that bring you joy and fit your path. There are other roles that other people can fill better than you can. You don't have to emulate some other woman or try to do everything that she does, because you're not her! Serve God in your way on His terms, and then He will truly be honored.

* Don't quit if you start to struggle. I always hear that people quit exercising way before they should - whether it's not doing enough reps or quitting the program altogether. When we get weary in our well-doing, our flesh says go ahead and stop, no one will even notice. Well, God notices and He knows our heart. Pushing through and pressing on toward the prize will help us see results in God's plan that we never knew were possible.

* Set a goal. You never know what your body is capable of unless you set a goal and then exceed it. You can decide to do 10 pull-ups today, and then keep going if you can surpass that. Do you want to read more Scripture? Then set a number for the day or the week. Would you like to start calling church members who weren't in church or Sunday School this week? Start with making one phone call and see where it goes. Pray about where God would like you to grow in your Christian service, and then do it heartily as unto the Lord.

* Good form prevents injury. I don't always have the best form during my workouts because I've only been at this for less than a year. The blessing to my life is that Danny's been doing it for ages and can tell me how to change my form, prevent me from injuring myself and see better results. Who in your life can be your accountability partner and help keep you from making mistakes that can damage your relationship with God and the people around you? Watching the way you live your everyday life can be a real eye-opener when you look at it from someone else's point of view.

* Variety and intensity are the keys. Most people give up on exercise after a few weeks or months because they do the same thing every day and get bored. Variety is the spice of life and may be exactly what you need to relight your desire to serve God. Don't read the same Scripture all the time - follow one of the read-the-Bible-in-a-year guides and explore what else God wants you to know. Attend a nursing home service or volunteer to teach Bible School this summer. Get out of your rut, give God your whole heart and remember the joy you had when you first got saved.

* You have to be disciplined. With Danny's work schedule so erratic, we have to get up at 4:45 in the morning to get our workout done before he leaves. We know that if we don't it will be well into the evening before we can get to it, and there's nothing worse than trying to cram in a workout, dinner, showers and relaxation before we go to bed early and do it all again. We could very easily reset the alarm and not do our workout in the morning (yes, we've done this), but we feel so much better when we follow through and start our day out right. It's also easy to say, I don't really need to go to the Wednesday night service this week. Or, Sunday School is no big deal, I'll just go to the church service. Or, maybe I don't need to tithe every paycheck. Discipline means that you keep going, you keep doing what's right and you keep following God's leadership. That's when you see the fruits of your labor.

* Do you best and you'll see results. There is no real rule book for what exact exercises we need to do to stay healthy and in shape. There are a lot of things Danny can do that I can't (but I'm working on it), and there are a few things I can do that he can't (yet). The whole point is to do your best and forget the rest. God expects our complete heart and soul, and the best that our heart can offer is submission to His will. Your best is on level ground with someone else's best because it's not about what you're doing or how much you're doing, but that you're giving God the best you can offer and serving Him with your whole heart.

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