Fulfilling Your Calling… Better
Today I ran four miles. I’ve never run four miles in my life.
In fact, prior to this year, I highly doubt I’ve run four miles cumulatively. I never liked running. I’ve been quoted saying “why would I run if i’m not being chased?!” And don’t even get me started on the silliness of treadmills… but I digress.
Though i’ve not yet attained some incredible love of running, I had a pretty significant change of heart about three years ago. I had what I like to call a “come to Jesus” moment. I realized that though I was pursuing my ministry calling, full-time, there were areas of my life I didn’t pay attention to, and in fact, had NO real motivation to change. Specifically my physicality sort of “hit” me… I would have liked to be healthier, to be more “fit”, but I was busy serving Jesus and getting fit seemed like, well… a lot of work or discipline or something. And I was rather busy.
But the Lord brought something else to mind – my calling. Yes, the very “calling” that made me think I was too busy to consider trying to be healthy. I have a race to run on this earth, a ministry to fulfill… but if I die of obesity or heart disease because I chose not to take care of what God instructed us is “the temple of the Holy Spirit” – my body – then isn’t that just as bad as disobeying His call, since I cut it short?
My passion isn’t getting healthy – in fact i’m sharing today because I’ve realized this is so much bigger than eating right or exercising. What I realized was the way that Christians are willing to sacrifice what we know we “ought” to do for the sake of our “ministry”. Yet, it’s that very calling – that life lived for Jesus – that demands we take care of these things! Our homes, our families, our bodies, even our possessions… they are all gifted to us by the Lord and if we don’t recognize that and honor Him with them, could we not compromise the very purpose/ministry He’s given to us to fulfill?
Living a life with “I know I should” or “I wish I was more like that” will not get us closer to change. When I came to Jesus that night three years ago – I asked for His help – I asked for specific instruction as to how to care for this body of mine. I asked, and recognized that by asking, I was drawing a line in the sand; if I didn’t obey, I was rebelling. Though it hasn’t been perfect, I can honestly say i’m a much healthier and ‘fit’ person in many ways and more so, I’m confident that my choosing to take care of this mortal body pleases the Lord.
As a side note: when my crazy-atheletic sister asked me to do an Adventure Race this December with her, I discovered that the desire to not look like a fool can also be a powerful motivator 😉