“Spiritually I feel much more weighed down by stress and problems when I’m not taking care of my body. Physically, I have less energy to serve God and more emotions to wade through when processing life.”
The above statement alone is one of the most profound discoveries of my weight loss journey. I didn’t write those words, Lysa TerKeurst did. But I so relate.
For years I prayed for joy, for the ability to overcome discouragement, for hope. I don’t see myself as having completely arrived in these areas, but I’ve found a powerful tool in discovering joy, combating discouragement, grabbing hold of hope.
It’s called taking a walk.
Eventually I usually end up talking with God, but even when it’s not a focused conversation my spirit rises up within me in worship just being outside, hearing the birds, feeling the fresh air.
There’s something about looking up into a huge tree or seeing the mountains in the distance, or gazing at the clouds or the flowers that puts me in my place, reminds me there is something bigger than I am, and HE is Good.
I grew up in church where we were often told to take care of our body because it was the temple of God. Unfortunately most of what was taught–or at least of what I heard–was the old southern “don’t smoke, drink, or chew or go with boys who do.” Once in a while I caught that I should think about what kinds of food I put into it, but I totally missed the idea of caring for my body as God’s temple by taking good care of it in the area of exercise.
I loved when Lysa wrote: “I want to . . . dedicate my exercise as a gift to Him and a gift to myself.”
Let’s join Lysa in the prayer: “Help me see the ability to exercise as a gift. I dedicate my temple to You and commit to start rebuilding it today.”
How about you? What do you do to add movement into your day? What exercise do you enjoy? Do you ever exercise just because it’s good for you even if it is not something you enjoy? If you keep doing it do you start enjoying it?
And what about schedule. How do you fit it into your busy days? If you don’t, could you add in once a week, then twice?
Tagged: connecting with God, connection of body and spirit, devotional thoughts, exercise, God, growing stronger, hope, joy, losing weight inside and out, movement, prayer, prayer walking, Spirit Seeker Sunday, spiritual connection, walk, walking, weight loss devotional
It is amazing to me how much you can connect to God when you are outdoors walking. I grew up on a mountain ranch and so being outdoors was a major part of my upbringing. Living in a city now I find it harder to get motivated to get outside because I for so long thought of being “outdoors” as mountains and cattle, snow and trails in the forest. But I developed the habit of going out anyway and God can show me some amazing things in the city. The wildlife around me is abundant (yes, even in the city) and his beauty is everywhere. I also have come to appreciate urban beauty. Oddly enough some of the graffiti I see is beautiful artwork. And the people I encounter are the real beauty. I enjoy my walking. Now my workout/weight sessions are a different story. lol
I think we are cut from the same cloth. Lately I’ve had to force myself out into my neighborhood. Winter means no flowers r green yards, and I, too, miss the more direct connection with nature I had growing up in the country. Still, the sunshine is the same . . .I’m not a big workout girl, either, but I do try to do some basic stuff in my living room to help me be stronger.
Often it’s tough to get out the door to walk, especially when it’s cold or wet. Once I’m walking though I usually enjoy it. My recent walk along the Navigation was filled with ice. Mud and floods. A few times I wondered if I should give up and turn back, a few times I almost ended up in the icy river, but it was a great walk and an adventure. I’m glad I did it.
As usual you inspire me to keep walking and not give up! It’s too easy to wait for the warm, sunny days and lose the others!
Sometimes you see the most beautiful things on the most horrible days