How can a Christian rightly view physical fitness in culture that perverts physical fitness into something that is lustful, sensual, prideful, self centered and often times idolatrous? IS there a right or wrong way to view personal fitness? Allow me to share some of my thoughts on this matter.
1.) Our goal as Believers is to first and foremost glorify Christ in word, action and thought. That being the center of who we are, we ought to pursue excellence in our daily spiritual walk, in our relationship with Christ. Most of us will readily agree that God blesses those who seek spiritual excellence, who seek to honor Him and follow His Word (He actually grants those who do pursue it the very ability to pursue it in the first place). May I suggest that there is another aspect of our lives in which we ought to pursue excellence, but sadly is often neglected? It is the pursuit of physical excellence in the realm of fitness and nutrition. Even the most on-fire Christians can be found living a lukewarm or outright terrible fitness lifestyle. Is neglecting regular exercise and proper nutrition a wise way to treat one's body? Certainly NOT! Examine these Scriptures to see what God's Word tells His people about the treatment of their bodies.
1 Cor. 6:19-20 "Or do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit within you, whom you have from God? You are not your own, for you were bought with a price. So glorify God in your body."
1 Cor. 3:17 "If anyone destroys God's temple, God will destroy him. For God's temple is holy, and you are that temple."
2 Peter 1:5-6 "For this very reason, make every effort to supplement your faith with virtue, and virtue with knowledge, and knowledge with self-control, and self-control with steadfastness, and steadfastness with godliness,..."
1 Cor. 3:16 "Do you not know that you are God's temple and that God's Spirit dwells in you?"
2.) Such passages can only lead us to admit that taking care of our health should be an important part of our lifestyle. How does this happen, though? How does someone escape from their fitness folly and develop proper lifestyle fitness habits? I tell you that this requires a transformation in your life, in your thoughts, and in your HABITS that puts you on the path toward excellence in your health. However, Christ is the only source on which we should focus this pursuit of excellence. He ought to be our focus. We should pursue spiritual excellence, and from there everything else is impacted (our pursuit of better health). Yet, be on guard that health and fitness do not become an idol to you! Trust in Christ for your strength. It is through Him that we are able to do anything.
Phil. 4:13 "I can do all things through him who strengthens me."
3.) Notice throughout this article that I do not use the word "perfect" but the word "excellence" instead. If one pursues excellence they will inevitably experience improvement and continual growth for life, by the grace of God. No human being on this earth ever has or ever will be perfect (the only perfect man was the God Man, Jesus Christ!). Do NOT try to be perfect because you will never get there! Just strive to be better and pray continually that God would give you strength to do so when you are tired and unmotivated. Seeking perfection in and of ourselves will only kill our motivation for personal fitness. If you want to improve your fitness, sports skills, or strength level and if there is one thing you get from this article it should be this: Desire earnestly to be better today for Christ's sake than you were yesterday and do so for the glory of God alone.
1 Corinthians 10:31 "So, whether you eat or drink, or whatever you do, do all to the glory of God."
These three principles are what I believe to be essential for one to begin to see their fitness through a biblical worldview lens. I speak on this issue as someone who is not just an advocate of a healthy, God-honoring lifestyle for others but also strives to apply the same principles and techniques he teaches to his own everyday fitness routine, by the grace of God.
Soli Deo Gloria! Rex Causey is a husband, father, personal trainer and sports coach. As the founder and lead trainer of Transformation Fitness he is is also a published author of a group book on fitness and success with speaker millionaires James Malinchak and Brian Tracy. He earned a Bachelor Degree in Exercise Science (Physical Education) and minored in athletic coaching and biblical studies. As a gifted fitness consultant, personal trainer, teacher, coach, author and speaker on fitness and success, Rex Causey is perfect for running a fitness bootcamp, seminar or event in your area or at your church or business or school! If you want to know more about Rex and Transformation Fitness please feel free to contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org. You can also visit http://www.rexcausey.comand find Transformation Fitness on Facebook. You are encouraged to share my info and articles with friends and family if you truly find it beneficial. God's speed!
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