Exercise is important for our physical health.

My Lenten practice this past year was going to the gym, and I have kept it up for the last couple of months (more or less). It has not always been easy (usually it is not!), but the hardest part wasn’t the exercises themselves. Instead, it was getting started and sticking with it through my feelings of embarrassment over my lack of knowledge and ability, comparing myself with others, and being timid in asking for help.

However, I quickly learned that others at the gym were not out to judge, but rather incredibly helpful and encouraging, wanting me to succeed! Consistency, discipline, accountability and finding what works best for me have been key, and slowly but surely, I have seen some of the fruits of these exercises in my physical health.

Exercise is also very important for our spiritual health. Spiritual exercises, just like physical exercises, are not always easy, but in the same way, I can tell how good I feel when I do them.  

Consistency, discipline, accountability, as well as encouragement, also similarly help our spiritual exercises have the best effect they can on our spiritual health.

These exercises can take many forms: regularly attending worship, Bible study, reading, prayer, meditation, podcasts, apps, classes, conversations, retreats… the sky is the limit!

Summer is a great time to explore and try spiritual exercises. So, I encourage you to consider what you can do for your spiritual health in the coming weeks and months.

However, I know that the hardest part can be getting started and sticking with it. Just like me going to the gym, it is easy to feel embarrassed about a lack of knowledge or ability, to compare ourselves with others, and to not want to ask questions.  

But have no fear! You are not alone, and St. John’s is a community not of judgement, but of encouragement, wanting you to succeed. So, if you need any help getting going, exploring options, accountability or encouragement, please let me know!

Through these summer months, may we see the fruits of our various practices in our spiritual health, physical health, and mental health – our whole beings. May we grow in the knowledge and love of God and in the way of Jesus.

Thanks be to God!