Getting healthy, getting fit, having a better work/life balance are great resolutions for the next year, but us humans are more than just what we do and how we look. To get to the source of contentment for the next year, we need to see the big picture: that each of us has been made in God’s image to know him and enjoy him forever. If you want to make the most of the new year, new health, new exercise, start with a spiritual resolution to come along to your local Church.
This Sunday is the time to do that with a great service for all ages at 10.30 at St Mary’s in Bransgore: great music, great people, accessible message and so much more!
Speaking personally about exercise… I love it and probably do way too much of it! I try to run twice a week (one 21k and one 5k), cycle twice (one endurance and one short time trial) and swim once (1 mile). To some people that may sound nuts, to others, pathetic. I’m not training for anything, I just love being outside. I’m convinced that being a Christian makes exercise more fun and so much more invigorating and easier to sustain. Seeing the beauty and majesty of the sea and forest reminds me that I’m both insignificant – such a small part of an amazing world – and significant to God. The bible says, ‘when I consider the heavens, the works of your hands…what are people that you care for them? Yet you have made them little lower than the angels and crowned them with glory and honour’ (Psalm 8). After exercise, I come home inspired, not by personal bests (which are few and far between), but by having time in the theatre of God’s glory which is the natural world.
The problem with exercise and new year’s resolutions is…guilt. We aim too high and when we fail we have yet another weapon to brandish against our self-esteem. As a Christian, I know that my life will always be characterised by failure: failure to be the person I want to be, failure to say and do what is just and good. That means I expect to fail with exercise too – and the disappointment is so much less and the guilt non-existent. Most of all, as a Christian, I know that my worth as a human being is not about what I achieve, about being the best, but comes from God’s acceptance of me, with all my failings: acceptance offered at the cross of Jesus Christ.
If you want to get the most of of your new resolution to do enjoyable, inspiring and guilt-free exercise this year, make a spiritual resolution first! And you’ll easily find someone in our church family to go running, cycling, swimming, horse riding, climbing, bowling etc. etc. with!