The other day I asked Silas, my 4-year-old, to get out of his pjs and put on his clothes for the day. Being the happy, compliant little guy that he is, he hopped right to it.
After getting dressed myself, I came back to find him looking like this.
Of course, my heart melted. It was cute and tragic all rolled up in one. He gave it his best effort, but still came up short.
He never asked for help, which I would have preferred over tears.
He made matters harder than they needed to be.
I was endeared by his heart, giving it his best go. But he gave up rather than seeking his Father’s hand.
Does this sound like anyone you know?
Let’s face it, fitness is hard. There are temptations all around us.
We have to eat at least three times a day, making food a constant challenge: eat what our bodies need or what our mouths might want? Even when we’re full, food is a temptation. Ever eaten dinner before going to see a movie? You were stuffed when you left the restaurant but as soon as you step foot into the theater, you have the hankering for some popcorn.
You can make room for more though, right?
Exercise can be no less challenging. With office jobs, sitting has become the new smoking. Furthermore, office hours have gotten longer, not shorter. Moms have just as hard a time finding uninterrupted breaks in their all-ready demanding schedules to workout. In either case, when time does prevail, solitude sounds better than sweating.
You’ll workout tomorrow, right?
And sleep… it can’t be time already! If you go to sleep, you’ll just have to wake up and repeat the whole process again tomorrow. Besides, your DVR is getting backed up and some new stuff just came out on Netflix. There’s no time for sleep tonight.
You’ll go to bed earlier tomorrow, right?
Without the Father, our fitness efforts keep coming up short.
We end up worse off, making things harder than they need to be.
We give up rather than reaching for our Father’s hand.
Here’s the thing… every time we’re faced with a challenge or temptation, we have the opportunity to ask our loving Creator for help. In fact, we weren’t designed to do life on our own. That’s why He provided the Holy Spirit to empower us and give us peace (John 14:25-27).
Asking for help is not a sign of weakness. There’s no honor in struggling on our own. We’re not called to perform or impress.
When the Holy Spirit drives our efforts, change comes from the fruit He bears (Galatians 5:22-23)!
I think when we try to do things on our own, like Silas, the Lord has a loving compassion for us. We set out to do the right thing and even with the right motives, but we can’t quite line up the button holes, pull our arms out of the sleeves, and put ourselves together.
He also knows that life can be fuller, richer, and more satisfying, but only with Him as the source of our strength.
Asking for help is not a sign of weakness. There’s no honor in struggling on our own. We’re not called to perform or impress.abide!
So reach for His hand. Remain in Him. Temptation does not need to overcome you!
Fitness might always come as a challenge, but it’s a challenge you won’t face alone.
It’s a challenge He can give you victory over because when you’re walking hand in hand with the Father, you’ve already won.
What has the Lord taught you about doing fitness on your own? Do you notice a difference when you’re walking alone versus walking with Him?