Our western culture mainly focuses the benefits of exercise on our outward appearance, along with the perk of living free from sickness.
But as Christians, our motivation to steward our bodies well should run far deeper than wearing a smaller dress size or having large, defined arms. The answer isn’t to forgo exercise altogether, but to focus on the purposes behind physical training.
In our fast-paced society, it can be easy to feel like we don’t have time to exercise. Work deadlines, chores, and various commitments can make us feel like there isn’t an inch of room left for working out. Exercise can seem like a luxury we can’t afford. But here are some reasons as to why we should pursue a regular exercise plan:
1. To steward the earthly tent God has given you – Keeping our hearts pumping and our bodies strong will enable us to keep going, even as we age. We honor our creator when we care for the bodies entrusted to us through exercise and eating healthy.
2. To serve others – Surely a life spent pouring ourselves out for the sake of others will come more easily with a strong and healthy body. We use our strength to lift babies or children we care for. We use our strength to travel to places that need to hear the good news of Jesus.
3. To keep your brain awake and alert – Regular exercise can help us continue to be students of God’s word as we grow and learn through regular study and meditation, unpack the promises of scripture, and apply it all to our daily lives.
4. To evangelize – Regular exercise gives us easy ways to meet people, establish relationships, and share our faith. You can form new relationships, share your faith, and find a new friend to invite to Bible study all from the elliptical.
5. To delight yourself in God – For some of us, getting our souls happy in Christ might mean we start our day with exercise in order to better focus on the truth of God’s word Pray yourself out of bed and to the gym as a means of waking up to ready your mind and heart for scripture.
The stress that can result from circumstances in our lives can be consuming.
Use exercise as a secondary means of fighting to keep the right perspective in life.