Have you seen the recent avalanche of advertising for the ‘Peloton Stationary Bike’? Beautiful people, rising early and eagerly jumping onto the bike. Pain-free, bike spinning bliss, and as they dismount the bike, they look into the camera with that look of, “I’m amazing.” You realize that’s not real life, right? Maybe for a few of you kale eating, non carb consuming, ‘type A’ freak shows- but not for the majority of the human race. In fact, I’d bet a stack of cash that 90% of the Pelotons purchased will wind up as a clothes hanging rack for your delicates to dry on, or your next big sell on Craigslist! To be in great shape requires discipline, effort, consistency, and yes, some pain. There is no way around it. Anything of value costs you something and our spiritual life is no different. Paul says it like this:
“Have nothing to do with irreverent, silly myths. Rather train yourself for godliness; for while bodily training is of some value, godliness is of value in every way, as it holds promise for the present life and also for the life to come.”
1 Timothy 4:7-8
Here are a few spiritual training tips that are true and tried:
1) GET A ‘TRAINER’ – Find a mentor, someone further along in the faith, and ask them if they’d help you in your spiritual growth (aka ‘disciple you’). I find most who are asked, would be honored, even flattered to be considered. Buy your mentor a coffee 2x’s month. Be proactive in your mentorship. Come prepared with thoughtful questions and take great notes.
2) GET A TRAINING PARTNER- It’s funny, the name “Peloton” its taken from the French word for “group or pack”. The idea being, riding in groups is easier. It saves energy physically and helps mentally. Find a partner to train with spiritually. Someone that can hold you accountable in your spiritual disciplines and can encourage you to stay on course. There is a reason Jesus sent His disciples out in 2’s……we are better TOGETHER!
3) GET A PLAN- failing to plan dooms you before you even begin. How will you grow in your spiritual life. What do you need to ADD to your life? What do you need to SUBTRACT from your life to become a better image bearer of Jesus? Set small attainable goals you can be consistent with. Small changes over long periods can make a giant difference. I’ve seen far too many people start to workout at the gym January 1 and they jump in with a little TOO MUCH enthusiasm. They end up hurting so bad the following week [D.O.M.S- Delayed Onset Muscle Soreness] we never see them again. Small, faithful, consistent and you’ll win!!!
God made you to win!