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Spiritual Body Building

February 25, 2008

My jeans were cutting off my circulation as I uncomfortably leaned forward on my lab stool.

ďThis is not normal,Ē I thought.

We were only fifteen minutes into what would end up being a hour long lecture by my lab professor and every two minutes, I was compulsively looking at my watch. The pain wasnít just uncomfortable. I was actually starting to believe I might not leave the lab without suffering damage to my internal organs.

All week, my jeans had been snug and ill-fitting. At first, I mentally gauged when they had been washed. Washing always shrinks jeans until you wear them again. When that explanation didnít pan out, I rationalized that this was the fault of winter with her hearty soups and breads. I was content with the thought of gaining a few pounds (I assure you that I am not one to starve!), but I couldnít shake the feeling that that wasnít it either.

I mean, how could only the waist of my jeans be tight?

Every day it had been the same thing, thoughóthe silver button or zipper or hook of a pair of jeans piercing into my abdomen. I was so distressed (and nearly faint) after class that I spent the entire drive home trying to figure out what could be wrong with me. I thought about my eating habits and consoled myself that I eat fairly healthy foods (OK fine, I sometimes eat frosting out of the can, but this is only during very extreme circumstances and we all have our moments. Donít judge me.) I also thought about whether I could have a health issue and maybe did need to drop a few pounds. I was just deciding whether or not I needed to start spending more time in the gym when it hit me. Weight lifting!

Since I started school again, I havenít been quite as zealous about the gym as I used to be. I go with as much as frequency as possible, but itís becoming harder and harder to pull myself away from whatever Iím doing long enough to bundle up, drive to the gym, and work out. In fact, for the past several weeks, Iíve been coasting in right before closing timeówith just enough time to do cardio and go home. Iíve been skipping the ab lifts and curls that used to be a significant part of my routine. They kept my belly from ballooning and apparently, my jeans from killing me.

Actual weight lifting is a lot like spiritual weight lifting. Itís easy to cut out the time to do it because it doesnít seem as important as other stuff. And when we do, we donít even notice the effects immediately! Eventually, itís easy to forget about doing our routine completely! Itís only when things get really bad or out of control that we realize how important keeping our muscles and our faith strong really is.

Micah 6:8 reminds us that God only asks three things of us: that we 1. act humbly, 2. love mercy, and 3. walk humbly with our God. That last one is a doozy, though, because itís referring to our devotional time. If we donít read our Bibles, pray, and ask God to demonstrate his character to us, it gives the devil an opportunity to creep in and wreak havoc. Then, before we know it, weíre having a really hard time trusting God or believing in His promises!

This week, Iíve tried to step it up with my devotions and umm...yeah, Iím back to doing the ab lifts too.

- Re: Spiritual Body Building from Shayna, March 5, 2008

Thanks for the comments, everyone! And don't worry, Brenda, it's not just us! One of my classmates told me the other day that she had to buy a pair of sweatpants in the campus store...because her jeans were causing cutting off her circulation. Oh, winter... :) You know what's great? Reading or listening to worship music ON the elliptical! I'm a BIG fan of multi-tasking!

- Re: Spiritual Body Building from April, March 1, 2008

We need to build ourselves up spiritually by reading the Bible each day and praying also listen to his voice.

- Re: Spiritual Body Building from exotik flower, February 29, 2008

thanks Shayna for this week's gives a good perspective on exercise and keeping-up with your spiritual life.

- Re: Spiritual Body Building from Brenda, February 28, 2008

Shayna, thanks for your blog this week, I really needed to hear this! I've been having some of the same issues myself. I'm going to get back into exercise and spending more time in devotional life too!

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