Life has been hectic for the last few days… I’ve spent two days in Albuquerque, cleaned out closets, did a lot of spring-cleaning which involves multiple trips to goodwill, and special deliveries to give items to friends who either need or would enjoy them. 

I’ve been so busy that I haven’t made it to the gym like I should. And I’m not even missing it very much. That’s because it’s summer-time and I don’t want to be “in” the gym right now. I want to go mountain biking.

But I haven’t even done that since last Sunday night. Here’s what happens. I wake up in the morning and decide that I want to go mountain biking in the cool of the evening. So I get busy working around the house, doing paperwork, or assembling the quilt for my new granddaughter….regular stuff that needs to get done.

Then when it’s finally time for the ride I decide that it’s way too windy out or someone has stopped by the house or I’m hungry and need to make dinner. And, just like in the morning, I’ve gotten too busy to do what I really want to do.  I guess what I’m saying is that life interrupts my plans.

Then I lay in bed and think about how much I miss my workouts. I criticize myself for not being in the gym and I complain about not riding my bike. I’m miserable. And then I decide that nothing is going to interrupt my plans to ride tomorrow.

And then it all starts over again the next day.

You know there is a simple solution to this. I could just get up and go mountain biking in the morning and then do all my chores….

Now that sounds like a plan that I’ll start in the morning…..

Confess your sins….

Confess your sins to each other.  (James 5:16) That’s what I’m doing right now. I confess that I’m a stress eater. I put food into my mouth so that I don’t let words come out. I walk around the house and eat anything that’s salty and crunchy. And if I can find something that’s salty, crunchy, and covered in chocolate that’s even better.

Knowing that I’m a stress eater is half the battle. The other half is doing something about it. When things are really stressful, I use all of my energy to control my tongue. And I do mean all of my energy.  So what’s a girl to do? Should I let my words fly or should I spend my energy stopping myself from eating? How can I control my words and watch my diet?

I’ll put the answer into a single word:  PREPARATION!

Personally, I prepare for it by having fruit, berries, nuts, and dark chocolate in the house instead of chips. I satisfy the need to eat with the good foods that God has provided for me….

Then at the end of the day I can rest assured that I haven’t said the things that shouldn’t be said and that I have not sabotaged my health and fitness goals.

This works for me… what works for you?

the worst lies….

The worst lies are the ones that we tell ourselves. I caught myself lying to myself the other day while I was at the gym.  I was telling myself things like this doesn’t matter, I’ll never achieve my goals, this is a waste of time…..

You’ve done it too! You’ve told yourself that you can’t do it, that you’ll never make it, that you can’t lose the weight, can’t get past the hurt, or over the pain.

We’ve all told ourselves these kinds of lies. And these are the worst of all because we believe them. Worse than that is that we believe them wholeheartedly.

Jesus said,

you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.”John 8:32

If that’s the truth (and we know it is because Jesus said it) then the opposite must be true. It’s the lies that put us in prison.

It’s time that you and I counter every lie with truth. Let’s make things  less complicated than they already are with only this verse…..

Jesus looked at them and said, “With man this is impossible, but not with God; all things are possible with God.” Mark 10:27

A rare question….

Yesterday I had lunch with a dear friend. As lunch was ending and the chit-chat was coming to a close she asked me a questions that I’ve rarely been asked.

What do you want?

In life people seldom ask me what I really want. As Christians, they may ask me what is God’s will in my life. I’ve been asked what does Hank want. People have asked me if that’s really the  best thing for me? Or, sounding like Dr. Phil, they may ask me how’s that working for me? But rarely has anyone ever asked me “what do you want?”

I actually know what I want. And I honestly believe that what I want is what God wants  for me because it combines His word with my passion.

I just don’t know the answer to the other questions like when, where, and how? And that’s where faith comes into play.

Now faith is the assurance (the confirmation, the title deed) of the things [we] hope for, being the proof of things [we] do not see and the conviction of their reality [faith perceiving as real fact what is not revealed to the senses]. Hebrews 11:1 (Amplified Bible)

I don’t have to know how, where or when. I just have to believe that what God has placed in my heart will come to pass. It’s really that simple.

It’s funny that the simple becomes complicated so easily for me. It starts when I start trying to figure it all out…. and it usually gets worse from there.

Today I can choose to believe instead of trying to figure it out. I can choose to trust that God’s timing is perfect instead of trying to rush things along. And I can choose to be in the moment instead of trying to live in the future. It’s all up to me.

How would you respond to the question,

“What do you want?”

Going thru the motions…..

I’m a people watcher. Especially at the gym. I’m always watching people to see what I can learn from them… And if I like what I’m seeing then I’ll ask them to teach me how to do it. Is my form right? Am I lifting too light or is it too heavy. When should I add this to my routine? All kinds of questions.

But I also notice those who come each and everyday and simply go through the motions. They slowly walk on the treadmill, mosey along between the machines, and lift the lightest weight possible. And they’re not making any progress towards reaching their fitness goals.

And, as a pastor, I watch people go through the motions all the time. They attend church but don’t participate in the worship. They sit on the pews for hours but don’t put anything they hear into practice. And they’re not making any progress towards reaching their spiritual goals.

Physical and spiritual goals are only met through time and effort. Nothing comes easily. We have to push ourselves beyond what we think we can handle. We have to work hard to achieve anything good.

My biggest suggestion here is to stop wasting your time by going through the motions. The time will pass anyway so why not put a little effort into it?