Don’t be forced to quit before you reach the finish line!
I joined a fitness club and in two months I’ve discovered over twenty-seven machines and apparatuses that produce pain.
Why, you might ask, did you wait until the middle of your seventh decade to make this decision? I suppose it has something to do with wanting to be able to have a farewell speech at the end of my life that is at least a little like the Apostle Paul who said: “I have competed well; I have finished the race; I have kept the faith.” 2 Timothy 4:7
So you’ll find me at the Kroc Center four or five days a week surrounded by previously mentioned machines and guys who look like stand-ins for the Incredible Hulk. I have an innate fear of anyone with biceps bigger than my waist (which is already too big for my height!)
When I see someone who can break a barbell with a stare and press over his head a weight close to that of a small sedan I stand in awe and quite a distance away at the same time.
But I’m not trying to become like them and I’m not sure Joanie would want me to.
All I really want to do is make it to the finish line. (“ I press on to reach the end of the race and receive the heavenly prize for which God, through Christ Jesus, is calling us.” Philippians 3:14 NLT) I don’t want to have to quit before my race is officially over. I want to live out my calling every one of the days that God has written into the narrative of my life.
And while it’s true that bodily exercise profits just for time and not for eternity, there’s no reason to limit the effects we can have on eternity by living poorly in the present.
So while I spend time doing the things that will keep me functioning physically, I plan to continue working hard on the inner man all the more. Somewhere between ‘burning out’ and ‘rusting out’ is where I intend to hang out.
And when one of those machines threatens to beat me I remind myself that “He is giving power to the weary, And to those not strong He is increasing might.Isaiah 40:29 Young’s Literal Translation