There is such a variety of people who use the gym, and I for one, never thought I would see myself inside one. I have been so inspired by the motivation that I see around me when I am working-out or attending group fitness. People with a desire to achieve a goal, and doing anything to get there. The sweat, the focused stares, the red faces, the groans and the echo of personal trainers saying, "You can do it!"
As I reflect on the (what appears like hundreds of people) I see every week, training hard and remaining so focused on their goals, I have to stop and think of the amount of energy and passion being exerted inside the gym, and wonder how much of that lasts on the outside.
I look at my own life and the way I "go hard" at the gym punching imaginary things in mid- air, running until I can run no more, dripping with sweat as I ride up pretend mountains. So much passion and motivation, but does this reflect my life as soon as I walk out of the gym? Do I stand passionately for things that matter in my community? Am I willing to sweat to bring Jesus to our world? Do I have an unwavering faith that is only strengthened by trials?
Passionate people make a difference in our communities, particularly when that passion is driven by what Jesus did for each and every one of us on the Cross. Jesus overcame the grave and rose again, not so we can just survive in life, barely scraping through each day, but so that we can live with passion and purpose, standing up for things that matter and bringing hope to lives around us.
If I lived with as must zeal as I have in my workout sessions and show as much enthusiasm and commitment in my walk with my God, maybe I could be like one of David's mighty men (2 Samuel 23:8).
Shammah, one of the three mighty men, was defending a field of lentils and fought so hard, winning the battle against the Philistines, even standing firm when the Israelites fled (2 Samuel 23:11).
Shammah was defending this field with such passion and conviction and would not back down from the role he was given. What strength he had, of body but most importantly, of character. To us we may think, "but it was only lentils", but to Shammah it was all that mattered and he was committed to the role set apart for him.
I ask myself, what has God asked of me today? This week? This year? What might my 'lentil field' be?
I think I am so far away from being anything like one of David's mighty men (or women) but I can change how I live tomorrow by getting out of bed and starting the day in the presence of the only One who gives us the strength and heart's desire to live for Christ and to be stirred daily to stand passionately for something that matters.