Exercise Yourself

Amazing! God says, “Be strong” (1Co 16:13), so He’s designed our muscles to respond to stress by rebuilding themselves: tear ’em down a little, feed ’em, rest, and they come back stronger. Pushing our minds works similarly: we can train ourselves way beyond our present limits to do what looks impossible at first.

Tranining ourselves in godliness works similarly, and it’s a more important kind of strength (Ep 6:10), so He says: exercise thyself rather unto godliness(1Ti 4:7-8) Spiritual exercise, systematically stressing our inner selves, produces mental, emotional and spiritual growth. (Ja 1:2-4) God’s called us to some amazing things; if we’ll try, taking it one small step at a time, who knows what we can do in Him? (Col 1:10)

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So push yourself a little: try to love God a little more — meditate on His nature and His ways, setting aside time to feed on His majesty, to behold His beauty, to admire and worship Him. Ponder your pathlook for ways to align more fully with His Lawperfecting holiness in the fear of God. (2Co 7:1) Walk in the light, relishing every moment as a perfect gift in which to enjoy Him, and He you.

Push your mind a little: hide one more piece of His Word in your heart, intentionally focus on His word and meditate on it a little more throughout each day (Ps 119:97), comparing scripture with scripture and wielding the sword of the Spirit (Ep 6:17) in spiritual warfare(Eph 6:11-12)

Push your heart and soul a little: practice being a little more like Christ, putting Him on (Ro 13:14), pretending to be a little more like Him every day. (1Pe 2:21) Try to love your neighbor a little bit more; every man a brother and every woman your sister; seek their highest good at every turn, how best to serve each eternal soul.

Don’t strive to earn your way to God, but knowing you’re already His; we’ll fail, and miserably at times, but less and less as we grow in His likeness. It’s not a contest but a journey, a journey through God and into God (Jn 15:5), the journey of a lifetime … and beyond. (Php 1:6)

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