It’s March 2015, and it’s still winter where I live. Slippery, slushy, snow covered our city yesterday and overnight with more to follow. Of course this all means that my excitement at being able to consistently train outside has died; time to hit the treadmill and the gym again. Typical first world problems that I’m not ashamed to have.
As I was getting ready to pack my bag I realized my most comfortable top might be a bit too revealing to wear. It’s my go-to top for exercising and I only wear it in my home, the thought of wearing it anywhere else started to worry me. There were thoughts such as, “What if someone from church sees me?”, “What if I cause someone to stumble in their walk with Christ?”, “What if the *&#@’s at the gym laugh at me and stare?”. All of these were ridiculous things to worry about. I almost returned a pair of Saucony Stabil CS3 because they looked hideous. Never mind the fact that as a seriously flat-footed, size 11 woman with wide feet, I really needed these not so fashionable footwear. The sales associates assured me they were the best looking motion control runners that had ever seen, but it shouldn’t have mattered.
I should have been more concerned with function, not fashion.
I have an old fashioned mentality when it comes to how Christian’s should dress. I believe that North American Christian’s should dress in a manner that respects our body such as covering strategic parts, not wearing outfits with the intention of attracting attention from the opposite sex, and not wearing filthy clothing. I’m not a clothing police, so if I encountered people who broke these three rules, I wouldn’t say or do anything about it; these are my personal values that I don’t intend to force on anyone.
After much frustration with shopping for runners and trying to select workout wear for this week, I remembered a lesson I thought I had already learned. When preparing to workout, prepare your heart first. If I had focused on the reasons why I had joined a running club and why I needed to purchase specific footwear, I wouldn’t have been caught up in the shallowness of how one should look while being at the gym.
When I work out, I’m a hot mess of glistening sweat, yes, I glisten! I look hideous and I become self-conscious. Let me tell you, there are some petty, gossipy, and snobby women at the gym and if I am focused on the important things I won’t be concerned about these females.
My fellow believers in Christ, let’s not let insecurity, pride, low self-esteem, or haughtiness accompany us to the gym.
Instead of only clothing myself in work out gear, let’s cover ourselves with the armour of God. The spirit of the enemy is always lurking trying to distract people and take us away from our purpose for taking care of our bodies. We can defeat the enemy by keeping our thoughts holy. Pray over your gym, the basketball court, the swimming pool, wherever it is that you exercise so that the spirit of God may be welcomed. There are many people in these types of places that have struggles and a great way to bring a blessing to these individuals is to pray spiritual protection over them.
If you haven’t already been doing so, I want to encourage and challenge you to say a quick prayer of spiritual protection for your fitness facility and its patrons. Peace.