by JohnÂ Grant
â€œFor physical training is of some value, but godliness has value for all things, holding promise for both the present life and the life to come.â€?
(I Timothy 4:8)
A recent article in the Washington Post caught my eye. It was entitled: â€œExercise Could Slow Aging.â€? It was an interesting read. It seems that active people have cells that look younger on a molecular level than those of couch potatoes. The bottom line was that there is strong evidence to show that exercise may stave off aging. People who exercise regularly, look and feel younger and actually live longer.
Paul spoke physical training in his first letter to Timothy and noted that while physical training has some value, godliness is of even greater value. He was talking about the exercise of being close to God through prayer and the study of the Word.
Pastors talk about â€œchurch growth,â€? and usually are referring to numerical growthâ€¦â€¦ getting more members for the church. But, I believe that when the Bible talks about â€œchurch growthâ€? it refers to â€œspiritual growth.â€? We are directed to grow in our knowledge and faith. The task of adding more believers to the church belongs to God. Our church growth task is to grow in our relationship with Jesus.
Our individual task of growth with Jesus comes through the daily discipline of quiet time, Bible reading and study and concentrated prayer. It is a program of spiritual exercise. I once heard of a book entitled â€œWorking Out with the Word of God.â€? We all need a daily workout with God.
In todayâ€™s world there is so much emphasis on being physically fit. Perhaps many of you have been influenced by the drive to “get into shape.” The benefits of entering into a physical fitness program are many. You will have a healthier body and probably live longer. You will have more stamina. You will look better, feel better about yourself, and be able to relate to others with more confidence.
While it is good to be concerned with physical training, it is even better to be concerned with spiritual training. We are not only “physical” beings, but we have a spiritual dimension to our lives.
Yes, with good physical fitness we will live longer and ultimately die with a healthier body, but spiritual fitness goes beyond the grave. Are you committed o daily discipline of getting and being spiritually fit?Â Â Â Â Â
(a thought on life by John Grant)
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John Grant is a former Florida State Senator and is a practicing attorney. He is an active writer and frequent speaker.Â He can be reached by e-mail at: John.Grant@johngrant.net