Exercising discernment is one way to train for godliness, and another way is to run toward hope.
For physical training is of some value, but godliness has value for all things, holding promise for both the present life and the life to come. 9 This is a trustworthy saying that deserves full acceptance. 10 That is why we labor and strive, because we have put our hope in the living God, who is the Savior of all people, and especially of those who believe. – 1 Timothy 4:8-10
This is one verse that I really go back to the King James Version to read:
For bodily exercise profiteth little…
I knew it! All those day staying away from the gym paid off! They did – in ways I do not like. The truth is that bodily exercise…physical training … is of great value. Paul is far from encouraging laziness here!
Physical fitness is big business these days. The diet industry is raking in the dollars. Even the government is against fat people these days (and I are one!). It is a great thing – especially for children – to emphasize physical fitness. We admire athletes – the way they sculpt their bodies and focus their abilities. I wonder if we placed just as much emphasis on training our souls what kind of impact that would have on our world. As we run toward spiritual fitness, we are running toward hope – because godliness blesses us in this life and the life to come. Paul says that this is a ‘trustworthy’ teaching.
Spiritual fitness is something Paul has written about before, to the Corinthians congregation.
Do you not know that in a race all the runners run, but only one gets the prize? Run in such a way as to get the prize. 25 Everyone who competes in the games goes into strict training. They do it to get a crown that will not last, but we do it to get a crown that will last forever. 26 Therefore I do not run like someone running aimlessly; I do not fight like a boxer beating the air. – 1 Corinthians 9:24-26
I think it is important to be just as focused on our spiritual life as we are the sports and hobbies that occupy our lives. We need to intentionally seek ways to grow and strengthen our resolve, our knowledge, our service.
I’ve always approached spring training as I have something to prove. ~Jamie Moyer
Let’s approach our effort toward godliness as if it were something we had to prove. Spring training for godliness involves exercising discernment and running toward hope. More tomorrow.
In the mean time, here are some great selections for your Kindle!
$9.50 One Shot at Forever: A Small Town, an Unlikely Coach, and a Magical Baseball Season by Chris Ballard
Thanks for reading!