I’ve discovered a totally new workout program. It is completely manageable; sticking with it is not a problem at all. I call it, “Exercise By Osmosis”. I’m thinking of making a video ... nah; too much effort.
It goes something like this.
It is important to take personal responsibility for determining, within my own heart and mind, what I will do and what I won’t do. Often I fool myself into believing that if circumstances are right, if time permits, when it feels good, when it won’t hurt or make me feel the least bit uncomfortable, I will engage in a particular exercise. This has been a real stumbling block to my process. It is so much easier to not do it. That’s right; “JUST (don’t) DO IT!”
I have found by purposing in my mind to not do something I am successful in accomplishing what I am not going to do approximately 99.5% of the time. That percentage is remarkable! And, by doing absolutely nothing, nothing gets done! That’s right, the results are immediate!
This has been an amazing revelation. So many times I would work out, sweat, run home, jump on the scale, only to find that either I needed a new scale, or the immediate effects of my toil were not at all evident. If I got far enough back from the mirror, sucked in my gut and then tightened my muscles, took off my glasses and squinted ever so slightly, adjusted the dimmer lights and posed in whatever manner satisfied my need to feel good about myself, I could briefly convince myself that my commitment was paying off. I felt good about me!” But I had to keep going back! I mean, it was like a life commitment! Not only that, I had to do the same things over and over again “believing” that in so doing, change was taking place and that maybe, just maybe, at some point the reward for my effort would be evident. YES CHANGE WAS TAKING PLACE; THE ONLY PLACE I DIDN’T HURT WAS THE LEFT LOWER CORNER OF MY BOTTOM LIP!
Now, it’s simple. I watch others workout. That’s right. Just watch. No sweat, no sore muscles - well, I did buy a firm rated number 5 pillow on which to sit - but other than a bit of soreness “there”, I am perfectly unaffected. I bother no one, no one bothers me. I just watch it all happen.
Okay, okay I’ll admit it. I was pulling your leg, There is no, “Exercise By Osmosis”. But isn’t it odd that in many ways we “exercise our faith” in just such a manner? Although we don’t want to admit it, we purpose in our heart and mind what we will and won’t do. Oh, we might mention the words, “church”, “the Man up stairs”, we’ll comment that, “God only knows”, or casually say “thank God” in our general conversation, but engaging in a purposeful dialog about the love of Christ can simply be too uncomfortable. It’s easier to expect others to do it while we comfortably sit our blessed assurance on our spiritual number 5 pillow.
Here’s the point I would like to make, “there is no room on the sideline for the committed Christian; like it or not, WE ARE IN THE GAME!” And it is the love of God through us that is exercised freely and abundantly for His glory, not ours.
“(Even) if I (can) speak in the tongues of men and (even) of angels, but have not love [that reasoning, intentional, spiritual devotion such as is inspired by God’s love for and in us], I am only a noisy gong or a clanging cymbal. And if I have prophetic powers - that is, the gift of interpreting the diving will and purpose; and understand all the secret truths and mysteries and possess all knowledge, and if I have (sufficient) faith so that I can remove mountains, but have not love [God’s love in me], I am nothing - a useless nobody. Even if I dole out all that I have [to the poor in providing] food, and if I surrender my body to be burned [or in order that I may glory], but have not love [God’s love in me], I gain nothing. Love endures long and is patient and kind; love never is envious nor boils over with jealousy; is not boastful or vainglorious, does not display itself haughtily. It is not conceited - arrogant and inflated with pride; it is not rude (unmannerly), and does not act unbecomingly. Love [God’s love in us], does not insist on its own rights or its own way, for it is not self-seeking; it is not touchy or fretful or resentful; it takes no account of the evil done to it - pays no attention to a suffered wrong. It does not rejoice at injustice and unrighteousness, but rejoices when right and truth prevail. Love bears up under anything and everything that comes, is ever ready to believe the best of every person, it hopes are fadeless under all circumstances and it endures everything [without weakening]. Love never fails - never fades out or becomes obsolete or comes to an end. As for prophecy [that is, the gift of interpreting the diving will and purpose], it will be fulfilled and pass away; as for tongues, they will be destroyed and cease; as for knowledge, it will pass away [that is, it will lose its value and be superseded by truth]. For our knowledge is fragmentary (incomplete and imperfect) and our prophecy (our teaching) is fragmentary (incomplete and imperfect). BUT when the complete and perfect [total] comes, the incomplete and imperfect will vanish away - become antiquated, void and superseded. When I was a child, I talked like a child, I thought like a child, I reasoned like a child; now that I have become a man, I am done with childish ways and have put them aside. For now we are looking in a mirror that gives only a dim (blurred) reflection [of reality as in a riddle or enigma], but then [when perfection comes], we shall see in reality and face to face! Now I know in part (imperfectly); but then I shall know and understand fully and clearly, even in the same manner as I have been fully and clearly known and understood [by God]. And so faith, hope, love abide; [FAITH, conviction and belief respecting man’s relation to God and diving things; HOPE, joyful and confident expectation of eternal salvation; LOVE, true affection for God and man, growing out of God’s love for and in us], these three, but the greatest of these is LOVE!” - 1 Corinthians 13:1-13
Gotta run - time to workout!