I don’t know about you, but I love to work hard. Do you remember when Michael Jordan hit the game-winning shot against the Utah Jazz in the 1998 NBA Finals? After Jordan’s first retirement in 1994, Byron Russell confronted him and said, “Why did you quit? You know I could guard you.” From that day forward, Jordan vowed that if he ever saw Russell in shorts, he was coming at him. It took Jordan more than four years to face Russell head on and make him regret saying those words. The countless hours of practice, working on his jump shot, and time spent in the gym rewarded Michael Jordan as the greatest NBA player of all time. There is only one way to get results on the court, on the field, in the gym, at home, and at your job and that is through hard work. However, some of us take hard work to the extreme and end up with our priorities out of order.
There is only one way to get results…through hard work.
According to the artist Michelangelo, “If people knew how hard he had to work to gain his mastery, it would not seem so wonderful at all.” We all have the same 24 hours in a day as the next man. The key is how you use those hours and what work gets the most attention. So many people neglect time for exercise because they feel like it takes too long to get results. Becoming unhealthy and out of shape didn’t happen overnight. It was a series of small decisions you made day after day that created your current physical condition. The same daily approach is going to be necessary to get your temple back in line. Second Chronicles 15:7 (NASB) says, “But you be strong and do not lose courage, for there is a reward for your work.” Physical activities have taken a backseat to working long hours, to make enough money to buy things, to impress people who don’t care about you.
Becoming unhealthy and out of shape didn’t happen overnight.
Kids Across America has a motto that says, “Put God first, others second, and yourself third.” I’m asking you to switch your focus off of you and onto someone else. You’ll be amazed at how well your needs are met when you’re working to give someone else the advantage. Who would reap benefits of you practicing a healthy lifestyle? Is it your spouse, children, parents, or siblings? Temple Takeover is a movement of selfless people who have made a decision to live healthy lives because they know the reward of health will benefit those around them more than themselves. God doesn’t expect you to be a professional athlete, bodybuilder, or ultra-marathon runner. But He does expect you to care for and maintain your body.
Know ye not that ye are the temple of God, and that the spirit of God dwelleth in you? (1 Corinthians 3:17)
So don’t be discouraged if the results on this journey seem to be slow. Be strong and don’t lose courage. Your hard work and discipline will be rewarded. Learn to appreciate your health with each passing day. Keep your heart rate up and that blood pressure down. Eat the right foods to serve as fuel to get you through a workout. Extend your life one workout at a time. God wants you to experience the fullness of life. A full or whole life starts with a healthy body.
Extend your life one workout at a time.
Here’s how to get hard work to pay off in your own life:
- ADMIT. Take responsibility for the physical state your body is in and start making changes today.
- BALANCE. Re-evaluate your priorities and make a new list. Your day should start and end with time spent in the Word, prayer, or giving thanks to God. The work is going to be balancing the rest of your day with family, job-related duties, and exercise.
- COMMIT. It takes 21 days of consistency to break a bad habit or start a new one. I’m asking you to give me the next three weeks to jumpstart your health to a new level. Are you up for the challenge?