Don't be intimidated by gyms if you want to exercise more. Here's a useful mantra.
Posted in , Dec 14, 2015
This is an excerpt from my latest book, Love & Care For The One and Only You: 52 Inspirations (Worthy Inspired). It’s all about taking care of ourselves—spirit, mind and body, honoring the gift of life and the body that God has given us, and striving for progress, not perfection, on this journey to better health. Hope this helps as you think about the New Year.
It was the moment. I finally got up my nerve to ask her.
“So, would you want to come to church with us sometime? We’d love to have you.”
She didn’t even look up from the dessert we were sharing as she said, “I don’t think I’m ready to go to church. I mean, I’m a mess…give me a few months to try and straighten out my life and ask me again.”
Her response made me so sad. Though I tried to explain that you don’t have to “straighten out” your life in order to come to church, rather that’s why we all go to church—to get straightened out—she still declined my invitation.
I wonder how many people feel the same way? I wonder how many people think they are “a mess” so they avoid the one place where they could find help, peace, fellowship and faith? Our church’s senior pastor, Pastor Travis Inman, recently said, “The church is like a hospital for the sick…If you’re perfect, then don’t come here because we’re liable to mess you up. We’re not perfect, but we’re perfectly loved by God.”
That’s good, isn’t it?
Jesus said, “Come as you are!”
You know, the gym is the same way. The people who need it the most are often the ones who avoid it the most with excuses like, “Well, let me lose a few pounds first, and then I’ll join.” Or, “I’m a mess right now. I don’t want to work out around all those perfect people.” Yet, the imperfect, out-of-shape, overweight people are the ones who need to be in the gym right now.
Do you avoid the gym because you feel less than perfect or you’re intimidated by the gym rats who pose in the mirrors and make grunting noises? Well, it’s time to swallow that pride, put on your running shoes, and head for the gym. You can’t worry about what others think or how they view you. This isn’t about them; it’s about you! It’s about your goals! It’s about your health! And, it’s about time!
Listen, we all start somewhere, and it’s not a competition. We aren’t trying to compete with the 20-year-old model who is training for an upcoming bikini shoot. We are simply trying to become a fitter, happier, healthier version of ourselves, right?
So, whether we’re talking about church or the gym—“Come as you are” should be your mantra.
Father, help me to focus on You and my health goals and worry less about what others think of me. Give me courage, God, to push past my fears and insecurities and continue this journey of health. In the Mighty Name of Your Son Jesus, Amen.