Five Minute Friday: Secret

Reach

Gentle Reader,

It’s been a month since I last participated in Five Minute Friday. Missed the chat tonight because I put off exercising until 5:15 p.m., which I rarely do, because as much as I hate mornings, I hate exercising at night even more. As often as I’m able, I roll out of bed, slide my feet into my shoes and get the job done. The sweaty, annoying job.

So. Anyway.

Kate says: secret.

Go.

I am not a health nut.

When I talk about my exercise schedule or the way I have to eat (which is pretty much vegan at this point), some assume that I’m an amazing gym rat or that I spend my days crafting fabulous, quinoa-based recipes. No. Not at all. Not true.

What I am is a lazy junk-food addict. I love Pepsi, chips, cookies, Arby’s and bacon. I don’t like getting up and doing burpees or hefting weights above my head. I want to binge-watch Netflix all day while sitting in a barrel full of Doritos. I want to take as many naps as possible. I want to become one with the couch. If I believed in spirit animals, mine would be the sloth.

So what’s my secret? How did I manage to change my diet? How do I keep up with the exercise?

There is no secret.

Taking care of our bodies to the best of our abilities falls under the realm of stewardship. We don’t own these flesh-tents. God made them. They belong to Him, just as our hearts, souls and minds do. Being the humans we are, we easily slide toward laziness, as I do, or toward obsession, spending hours and dollars crafting the “perfect” body because we hope that a beautiful outer package will fill the inner void. Neither is healthy.

Stewarding our bodies really is as simple as “eat less, move more.” We don’t like hearing that. We want the quick fix. We want the diet fad. Having to make deep, lasting lifestyle changes? #nothanks

So if there is no secret, and the route to success is truly simple, why is it so hard? Why do I (and maybe you) have so much trouble aligning our attitudes, thoughts and desires with the actions we know we must take?

Because we forget the spiritual aspect.

…let us not grow weary while doing good, for in due season we shall reap if we do not lose heart.

– Galatians 6:9 (NKJV)

This verse is eschatological. Paul draws us to keep our eyes on what lies ahead, knowing that serving Jesus now is worth every effort and toil because in the end we will receive the great reward of being with Him, face-to-face. There is a broader principle, though: sowing and reaping. In verse eight,

…he who sows to his flesh will of the flesh reap corruption, but he who sows to the Spirit will of the Spirit reap everlasting life.

– (NKJV)

Again, eschatological and broad. We have everlasting life by “sowing to the Spirit,” meaning placing our faith in the saving grace of Christ. But the kingdom is not just “then.” It is also “now,” within us, by the indwelling of the Spirit. We are to live as people who see things differently, who comprehend a new reality.

So I pray, Jesus, help me. I don’t want to do this. I don’t want to make a salad. I don’t want to do push-ups. You’ve got to enable me to do good. You’ve got to empower me to listen to the Spirit instead of myself. 

And He does.

Stop.

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15 thoughts on “Five Minute Friday: Secret

  1. Such an important reminder. Thanks friend. I need some motivation to get moving/working out again. I think this might just do it. Blessed to be your neighbor at FMF this week. We’ve missed you!

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    1. It’s definitely tough to keep to a routine. I really have to get my exercise out of the way first thing or the chances of my getting it done plummet.

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    1. Okay, this made me smile. When we were in England several years ago, we got on a train with a group of drunk men. (Pretty sure it was a bachelor party). They were carrying a case of Fosters and had to have consumed half of it by the time we pulled into our destination. Thankfully, they were happy and silly and so made the journey quite entertaining.

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    1. I have to think of fitness in terms of stewardship because I’m really, genuinely not into eating right or exercising. Never have been. Definitely need the power of the Holy Spirit to keep going.

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  2. I agree, your words are great motivation to get back on track. I like my chair waaaaayyyy too much! Thank you for sharing this pep talk! It’s just what I needed! Cindy #fmf

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    1. So glad you stopped by, Cindy! It’s a pep talk (or, rather, a grumpy talk) I have to give myself quite often. The nice part is, if I just get up and get the push-ups and all done, then I have the rest of the day for fun things. 🙂

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    2. Cindy, I tried to leave a comment over at your blog. I got a pop-up telling me that I was “blocked as a suspected bot.” Not sure what that’s about. In case the comment really doesn’t make it through, know that I enjoyed your post. 🙂

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      1. I’m so sorry, Marie. I’m afraid I’m not smart enough to know how to fix it either. I so appreciate taking time to try! And I thank you for your kind words.

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  3. It’s so true that we often long for a quick fix when there is no secret- it’s just discipline and forming good habits. Remembering to keep our eyes on the reason why and focussing on Jesus definitely helps.

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  4. Ah – when you asked, “so what’s my secret? How did I manage to change my diet? How do I keep up with the exercise?” I was just sure you had the answer:) “There is no secret.” Sigh. Oh if only there was a magic secret – that did not involve exercise, crunches or squats!! But the spiritual aspect – even in weight loss and good health – really is key….perhaps even, the secret!! Thanks for sharing!

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