This month I’m working on my spiritual discipline of exercising. If you know me you will not be shocked to know that exercise is rarely (if ever) on my priority list. Friends gasp when I order a salad, people applaud when I tell them that I actually ran, and I find my friends who do triathlons insane.   So why did I pick working out as a spiritual practice?

There is an idea that is pretty important to Christians called “incarnation.” This means that God’s love has been and is being shared through creation here on earth. We see this most clearly through the life of Jesus.   Jesus was God’s love in human form. Jesus cared for people’s needs on earth by feeding, healing, and teaching. Creation, including people, is important and loved by God. Like Jesus, we share God’s love here and now. I think that my task of sharing God’s love here and now is more important than my dislike of sweating (it’s nasty, I don’t care what other people say). That is why working out is my discipline for the month. I’m created by God to share love…God thinks my body is important, I should probably do my part to take care of it. I should be able to share God’s love as fully and as long as possible…this means being healthy.

I don’t have plans to go crazy, but I’m joining a gym. I’ll join a class or two, I’ll run (as long as I can do so in air conditioning with a TV in front of me.) I’m doing this, not so that I look good in a swim suit… I’m doing this in order to follow God a little more closely. Did I mention that I hate sweating?