Welcome to Week Two of Commit to Live Fit! 40-Day Challenge.
This Week’s Lenten Focus: Moving beyond your comfort zone
What is Lent? Lent is a time when many Christians prepare for Easter by observing a period of fasting, repentance, moderation, and spiritual discipline. The purpose is to set aside time for reflection on Jesus Christ – his suffering and his sacrifice, his life, death, burial, and resurrection. 
Jesus left the comforts of heaven to walk the earth, to save men’s souls. May we be humbly willing to stretch our faith and follow His lead.
Without faith it is impossible to please God. Anyone who comes to Him must believe that He exists and that He rewards those who earnestly seek Him. –Hebrews 11:6
You’ll notice that the disciplines each week are easy to do, but just as easy to let go of. Lean in; engage with God as we take this journey. You carry the treasure of the Spirit of the Living God in you! Ponder this week the power of God’s cleansing work in your life. He’s made you new! No spot or stain on you! Care for your physical and spiritual health in a way that honors God.
Last Week’s Disciplines:
Read the Word
This Week’s Disciplines:
Stretch Your Muscles
Stretch Your Faith
Physical Discipline: Stretch Your Muscles
I’m telling you friend, if you take a few moments every morning and every evening to stretch your major muscle groups, you’ll feel a whole lot better and carry yourself taller! Here are some of the many benefits of stretching regularly:
- Alleviates most body aches
- Reduces stress
- Improves circulation
- Increases overall flexibility
- Reduces occurrence of injury
Dangers of NOT stretching:
- Higher level of muscle discomfort
- Greater potential of injury
- Decreased Circulation
- Increased and recurrence of muscle/joint issues
- Absorb stress in a way that diminishes health
Remember to stretch gently in the morning since your muscles will be stiff and not warmed up.
When you roll out of bed in the morning, face your mirror, stand with your feet shoulder width apart and bend your knees slightly (sit back slightly in squat position; shift weight to your heels). Place your left hand on your left thigh and stretch your right hand in the air (pointing upward – 12 o clock). With knees still bent and your left hand on your left thigh for support, and abs tight to support your lower back, gently stretch that arm overhead until you’re pointing 11 or 10 o clock). Then repeat on the other side. Lie on the floor, put your hands under your knees and gently pull them toward your chest. If you’re able extend one leg in the air and stretch your hamstring; flex and point your toe to get that lower leg warmed up as well (and then repeat with the other leg). Stand up and take a few deep breaths by breathing in through the nose and exhaling through the mouth. Doing a few basic stretches like these will energize you and helps you feel ready for your day! It’s amazing what a difference a few moments of stretching will do for you. Repeat this routine again at night before you go to bed.
If you need more instruction when it comes to stretching, you’ll find a number of instructional videos on YouTube.
Spiritual Discipline: Stretch Your Faith
Scripture says that we cannot please God without faith! So this week it’s time to activate your faith in a more intentional way. Each day this week, ask the Lord to show you what He wants you to believe Him for (is it rest? Provision? Direction? A future promised land?). Then start thanking Him by faith for His promise to you. Find a scripture to stand on and start living like His promises are true!
Also, make yourself available to Him each and every day. Ask Him to use you in ways that surprise you. Pay attention to that inner nudge and move when He tells you to move. Buy a cup of coffee for someone in need. Write a letter. Open a door. Reach out to a stranger. Listen for the Lord’s voice and then do what He says. Your faith is precious and priceless to Him!
Here’s why stretching our faith is so important to us:
- Reminds us of who (and whose) we are
- We grow in the things of God
- We become spiritually conditioned to take the land God wants to give us
- Reminds us that we’re pilgrims on this earth, just passing through
- Reminds us that greater is He is who in us, than he that is in the world
- We bring pleasure to God’s hear when we live by faith
Scripture for Faith Stretching:
What good is it, dear brothers and sisters, if you say you have faith but don’t show it by your actions? Can that kind of faith save anyone? –James 2:14
For we live by faith, not by sight. –2 Corinthians 5:7
Dangers of living an earthbound life:
- We lose our sense of expectancy
- We lose sight of our invitation to walk intimately with God
- We miss out on an exciting faith adventure
- We’re easily deceived by the enemy
- We settle for far less than what God has for us
I’ll be praying for you as you add these healthy yet simple disciplines to your life. May you flourish in health, both physically and spiritually!
Let’s do this!
Jesus, thank you for Your goodness to me! Forgive me for sometimes making an idol out of my own comfort. I’m ready to be stretched in a way that grows my faith and reflects Your grace in my life. I make myself available to You this day. Open my eyes to see who You’ve appointed me to bless today! Give me a heart to step out in faith and to reach out in love. Increase Your territory in and through me and make me more like You. In Jesus’ Name, I pray, Amen.
How do you plan to incorporate these disciplines into your week?
How are your doing on last week’s disciplines so far?