He answered, “‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength and with all your mind’[a];and, ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’” Luke 10:27 NIV
What Does Physical Strength Have to Do With Loving God?
Loving God with ALL your strength means staying strong in your faith and trusting God enough to turn everything over to Him. We cannot deny that often the first thing we think of when we think of strength is physical endurance. There is good reason for that. How strong we are physically has a direct correlation to how strong we can be mentally. When you aren’t at your best physically, it tends to overshadow everything else. You can’t concentrate the way you normally would due to the exhaustion, pain, or lack of energy. In such circumstances, it’s hard to fully serve God the way we would like to serve Him.
But Isn’t It Selfish to Focus on Being Fit? How Does That Serve Others?
True confessions time–I used to believe that I had so much to do as a mother that taking time to exercise or read health books wouldn’t be the best use of my time. The truth is, I have a husband and little mouths to feed. I want them to be healthy, so meal planning is a fantastic way to serve them!
When I exercise, I am setting the tone for the rest of the day. I need both the mental and energy boost that it offers to be the best wife and mommy I can be the rest of the day. Plus, my kids are copying everything I do. If they see me taking time for exercise, they often jump in and join me. It’s good for their bodies too! We may not do everything right, but we often end up in a heap of giggles and making memories.
So whether you eat or drink or whatever you do, do it all for the glory of God.” 1 Corinthians 10:31 NIV
Let’s be honest for a minute too. When we do these things and look our best, we like it and our husbands notice! I happen to be quite fond of my husband. I think he deserves a wife that makes him happy. I’m not saying that we have to be gorgeous or skinny to please our husbands, but if we really love him more than we love ourselves, we will want to give him our best! It may not be spiritual, but it’s an added perk. Or perhaps it IS spiritual. Gary Chapman’s book Sacred Marriage: What If God Designed Marriage to Make Us Holy More Than to Make Us Happy goes so far as to suggest that there is even a direct correlation between our sex lives and our prayer lives!
It’s Not Too Late!
Maybe you had a New Year resolution that you were going to lose weight or get in shape. It’s a few weeks in and and perhaps you have yet to have a successful day of sticking to your diet plan or exercise routine. That’s okay! God’s mercies are new every morning! We don’t have to start at New Year, Monday morning, or even at breakfast. We can start right this second. All you have to focus on is being the best you that you can be right this second. Click To Tweet If we focus on following God’s lead with all our strength, He will lead us step by step until we achieve the goal that He has set for us…and beyond!
A Practical Step
January’s Book Brigade book is Trim Healthy Mama Plan: The Easy-Does-It Approach to Vibrant Health and a Slim Waistline. This plan happens to be a doable plan that works for me, so I want to share it with others. I would love for you to join me on the Trim Healthy Mama journey if you think it might work for you. I will post favorite THM recipes on instagram and do occasional Periscope broadcasts about what I have found that works and motivation. You can also check out my Healthy Living Pinterest board for inspiration. I realize no plan is for everyone though, so if this doesn’t work for you, I encourage you to keep working to find a plan that will help you follow God with ALL your strength.
Have you found any spiritual benefits to being physically strong? What is your plan for staying healthy and strong?
photo credit: <a href=”http://www.flickr.com/photos/91364408@N05/8296290838″>Miami Fitness TV-62</a> via <a href=”http://photopin.com”>photopin</a> <a href=”https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/2.0/”>(license)</a>