Do Faith and Fitness Really Mesh?

Goodmorning Fit People!

There is a lot going through my mind at the moment. This is shaping up to be a most fruitful week and it has posed some questions….

If you were unaware, I recently returned from a trip to Chisinau, Moldova through Children’s Hopechest and partnered with Beginning of Life Ministries. That’s a mouthful alone! So, this may lead you to wonder what the heck I do when I’m not slinging weight around in the gym ( I would NEVER sling!), running through cardio, prepping food and homeschooling my youngest….Even if you aren’t wondering, I’m about to tell you :)

I travel the globe teaching self-defense to victims of sex trafficking and human exploitation.

Yep, that’s where my heart truly lives. That is what keeps me training clients and running boot camps and challenges. It’s what gets me out to the gym at 5 a.m. every morning and back out there every afternoon. I train for life. My lifestyle and the path chosen for me required quite a bit of training…

So, aside from the fact that there are times when I truly do pray hard while training (Lord, please don’t let me drop this on my head…) and that God is my spotter….do I believe that fitness and faith can mesh? My one word answer: YES. It is my firm belief that we are to care for our physical bodies in order to do God’s work and rise to our calling. I’ll admit, in the days when I was a couch potato I would NEVER have taken a flight halfway around the world….but days have changed.

The Bible gives the command GO over 1492 times. That leads me to believe it is pretty important. The great commission (Matthew 28) tells us to go unto all the world. Am I making you uncomfortable yet? Good, we all need it. If I am out of shape and lackluster in life, how can I be effective for ANYBODY? This is also true if I am simply looking at my own nose and never beyond. Fitness is about way more than a tight butt and flat abs…..it’s about being ABLE.

I have been blessed with opportunities to meet loads of people from the fitness world. I have met competitors, celebrity trainers, and just some really awesome people. The thing that has really stood out is the faith of most of these people. A lot of competitors give God the glory for the life they lead and many have put their fitness to work raising money for organizations and even going on mission trips. Are they perfect people? No way! They know that, and they give God the glory for His daily mercies. Sadly, these people who are the epitome of perfection in magazines judge others far less harshly than those who warm the pew in the local church….

The realization hit me the other day that those who develop the discipline of the physical body also tend to have more discipline in their spirit and will. In my own personal life I have noticed that my quiet times took on way more meaning when I began to schedule them like a workout. I also have extra quiet time in the gym. It seems that God can be heard easier when my body is weak….

I must be honest, I never thought that I would see the world of fitness and faith collide such as it has for me this year. In my own reality, I always tried to separate the two. That goes back to my control issues :) . I just assumed fitness would stay in one corner and my faith would reside in the other. If you want to see how they really collided and changed my world, check out THIS blog. Long story short, God gave me a love for fitness and has also given a small corner of that world. Therefore, He expects me to use it for His glory and purposes for to him who is given much, much will be required. That may seem counterintuitive to the American dream, but within this “giving UP” of gifts and talents there is a wealth of freedom.

So what do you think? Do you keep it all separate? Perhaps it is this separation that is keeping you from your goals. Our faith should seep into ALL areas of life, not just some.

Are you willing to start living your faith and fitness together? Or perhaps you want to know more about this faith thing…I’m happy to chat with you :) In this faith and love there is more than acceptance. There is no condemnation, there is victory over the past, there is hope for the future and there is freedom, never-ending.

Live a little louder each day, take no moment for granted :)

Michelle

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