Monday, May 28, 2012

Work out With God

I have to confess that lately my quiet times have been a bit blah.  And blah led to avoidance.  And lately I just sort of look at my bible and tell myself that I am going to spend time with God as soon as I am done with Facebook, email, cleaning, blogging...but then something else comes up, I run out of time and here I am.  The longer I went the harder to make a connection and feel like it was worth the time.

Also, between the cold winter weather, my knee pain and life stress I somehow managed to go so long without going to the Y that they installed new curbs in the parking lot which dried and the caution tape has all be removed since I was last there (they are wrapping up a year long remodel).  I haven't lifted a weight, run a mile or downward dogged in far too long.  I think as everything became too busy I worried that continuing to prioritize my exercise routine over being with my family seemed a little too selfish and I unconsciously started letting it go.

But this is my last week of full time outside the house employment and today is another day and the morning was a gorgeous 65 degrees and I decided it would be nice to just get out of the house and move my body.  I do love to exercise even if I let my guilt and lazy take over occasionally.  And while I was on my walk/run, mostly walk, I started praying which is what I often do when I run.  And listening.  I started by confessing my lost connection with God and how I have felt so overwhelmed by my life the past few months I haven't known how to rest my mind and turn to God.  I even wondered what to say now, on my walk, about what was happening in my life.  Where am I?  So I listened.  And God said, "Worship".  I was listening to worship music and as I turned my heart and mind to the music and the worship I realized something, that is what I always do on my runs.  That is a big part of what I love about running.  The connection to God I experience as I worship him while I run.  Then we talk and I have clarity and peace and when I get home and open my bible or devotional book I am ready for the lessons He has for me that day.  I can't run without worship and apparently I can't worship without running.

My sister-in-law and I have talked many times about the connection to exercise and our quiet times.  How for both of us we don't seem to be able to strengthen one without the other.  Anytime I make a goal to improve my health and exercise I always find myself writing next to that goal something that strengthens my faith as well and vice versa.  They are linked for me.  Always have been.  And today I think I began to understand why.  They are my solitary time of worship.  When I am away from the distractions of my life and open to what the Lord has to show me.  I have only recently started running with music.  I ran in silence for years and loved it.  I still often leave the ipod at home.  I love to bask in the beauty of the world God has created and be open to see and hear and appreciate the sights and sounds all around me.  I quiet the noise in my head and just listen and be present with God.

So as of today I am letting go of my guilt over my work outs.  They aren't selfish acts of escape and vanity, they are acts of worship to God.  They strengthen my faith and prepare me to be a better wife, mother, friend and child of God.  Today is the first day of the rest of my life.

And with that I am getting SERIOUS about rehabbing this IT band injury.  Because as lovely as a morning walk is I LOVE TO RUN.  And there is just no reason I shouldn't be able to loosen this thing up and get back out there.

3 John 1:2 "Dear friend, I pray that you may enjoy good health and that all may go well with you, even as your soul is getting along well."

Proverbs 4: 20-22 "My son, pay attention to what I say; listen closely to my words.  Do not let them out of your sight, keep them within your heart; for they are life to those who find them and health to a man’s whole body." 


  1. You encouraged me with this post. I also love walking (not running so much) because I have some great conversations and they cultivate new ideas and thoughts about life I wouldn't have had otherwise. Thank you for the reminder. Its been awhile.

  2. I will be praying for you as you get back into "the rhythms of grace." I, too, link worship and exercise together. Makes me think of Romans 12:1 "presenting ourselves as a living sacrifice as a reasonable act of worship."
    Visiting from Playdates from the Wellspring...Glad I did.

  3. Care of self is intrinsically an act of worship, as long as it's approached that way. For a long time I thought food fasts during Lent were bogus, but I don't think so any more. Weight loss, exercise, all of it is about honoring the gift of body given to you by God, and as long as you don't get lost in the vanity part of it, it glorifies God to improve your physical being.