1 Timothy 4: 8 "for while bodily training is of some value, godliness is of value in every way, as it holds promise for the present life and also for the life to come."
Here is a quote by Mark Twain at his 70th birthday celebration: "I have never taken any exercise, except sleeping and resting, and I never intend to take any. Exercise is loathsome. And it cannot be any benefit when you are tired;"
We have mixed feelings about exercise. We know that we need to do it for many health reasons...but, by its nature, exercise just wears you out. It is work. Of course it can become satisfying and the results can inspire and motivate continuation. I suppose the hardest thing about exercise is when we haven't been doing it for some time and we contemplate starting...or attempt to become consistent at it.
Spiritual exercise is similar. We know that we need it as believers. Living in a harsh world that has its own value system that runs counter to the Lord we need to feed our minds on healthy soul food from scripture and think with regularity on the Lord. He is present in our lives but we can squeeze Him out of our conscious thought. We need to have conversation with Him and if we haven't been doing that regularly it can feel awkward.
But, like exercise, if we begin to see the benefits showing up in our life...peace, purpose, guidance, answered prayer...the very real benefits motivate us to continue. We begin to see the importance behind the Commandment to "Remember the Sabbath day, to keep it holy." In a way we need rest to exercise spiritually. Perhaps even Mark Twain would have agreed with that!
"Death is inevitable. Life is a choice!"
Jesus said to her, "I am the resurrection and the life. Whoever believes in me, though he die, yet shall he live."