Friday, March 11, 2011

The Exercise Paradox

Here's a bit of health news that some of us less exercised people might like to read.  This research (which shall probably soon be contradicted vigorously by some other research) suggests that too much intense training may actually damage heart muscle, leading to earlier deaths, not prolonged health well into old age.

Hear! Hear!  I say.

OK, not exactly, but the point is this: we can become addicted to anything, and that includes excessive exercise. Even things that look good can become downfalls when they take over our lives.

I think that is one of the major purpose of Lenten disciplines: see what it is that has taken over our lives, even if it is a "good thing" that keeps us from worshiping only the Lord God.  Do we worship the "perfect body?" Do we focus all energies on the "perfect relationship" or "perfect house" or "perfect job?"

Or, where pastors are concerned, are we so focused on leading the "perfect church" that we've forgotten that being set apart for holy leadership is often the first step in the journey that lead to the cross, to the place of total loss, to the darkness of hell, until we understand that it is only God that gives the resurrection and only God that is worth worshiping, not our own accomplishments.

I do believe God calls us to be accomplished people, to move toward perfection in love and excellence in tasks.  I also believe that when those things become God, rather than the actual Holy One, that all we do ends up being useless, or even destructive.

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