Have you ever started something you felt should be easy but found it to be difficult? I started a new workout routine yesterday and I felt totally out of shape by the end of it. I have been working out five days a week since October of last year except for vacation. You would think I would have been able to handle the workout without great difficulty; however, I was out of breath and out of energy at the end of the workout and it was just day one.
When I first began working out last October I had great difficulty with the weight lifting. I had not developed any upper body strength. As I did my workouts each week, I began to gain strength. Most recently, I have been able to do some exercises with three times the weight I used when I began. It took time and perseverance. I know as I commit to the new workout routine, I will gain strength and improve.
There are many disciplines of the Christian faith Jesus encourages us to pursue and in some cases commands us to do. We are to pray [Matthew 6:5-7, Luke 11:2]. Some people feel uncomfortable praying out loud or for others, however, the more you do it, the more comfortable you will become with it.
In Matthew 6:16 Jesus says, “When you fast…” He doesn’t say if, but when. He has an expectation we will fast and devote that time to Him.
Matthew 10:8 tells us “Heal the sick, raise the dead, cleanse the lepers, cast out demons; freely you received, freely give.” You may be saying, “I don’t have a clue how to do all of that.” As you seek the Lord through His Word, He will guide you in all He asks you to do. You simply have to be willing. Seeking wise counsel from someone who is spiritually more mature than you will also help you in the process [Titus 2”4-8]. We are the Body of Christ and we are to spur one another on in our pursuit of Jesus [Proverbs 27:17].
Everything you attempt in faith is not always easy. Sometimes it takes practice and time for you to feel comfortable. We cannot afford to back down or quit just because it gets hard. We must persevere. Michael Jordan is considered the greatest basketball player of all time. He didn’t make the first basketball team he tried out for in school. Before most people can be great at doing something they start out bad at it.
2 Peter 1:5-7 says “For this very reason, make every effort to add to your faith goodness; and to goodness, knowledge; and to knowledge, self-control; and to self-control, perseverance; and to perseverance, godliness; and to godliness, brotherly kindness; and to brotherly kindness, love.” We do these things as we walk out the work the Lord left for us to do.
It’s time to strengthen and build up your spiritual muscles. It may be a stretch for you, but as you practice your abilities will increase.