Why on earth would we need spiritual strength training? The Merriam-Webster dictionary tells us that few definitions of strength are capacity for exertion or endurance, power to resist force, and power of resisting attack. These are all qualities needed in spiritual life. Because life is no picnic. It is a life-or-death fight. We need to be ready.
God is strong, and he wants you strong. So take everything the Master has set out for you, well-made weapons of the best materials. And put them to use so you will be able to stand up to everything the Devil throws your way. This is no afternoon athletic contest that we’ll walk away from and forget about in a couple of hours. This is for keeps, a life-or-death fight to the finish against the Devil and all his angels. Be prepared. You’re up against far more than you can handle on your own. Take all the help you can get, every weapon God has issued, so that when it’s all over but the shouting you’ll still be on your feet. Truth, righteousness, peace, faith, and salvation are more than words. Learn how to apply them. You’ll need them throughout your life. God’s Word is an indispensable weapon. In the same way, prayer is essential in this ongoing warfare. Pray hard and long. Pray for your brothers and sisters. Keep your eyes open. Keep each other’s spirits up so that no one falls behind or drops out. (Ephesians 6:10-18, MSG, emphasis added)
In order to be able to fight the good fight we need spiritual strength training. What is it? It is practicing our faith every day of our lives. It’s living out our faith and not forgetting God when we can handle things on our own. It’s a decision to let the Holy Spirit work in us and teach us the ways of the Lord.
When we learn to live in grace, we know where to turn when things get rough. When we know our Father intimately, we grow to truly love his ways and claim them as our own. All this strength training (that happens by exercising our faith daily) builds us up to know for sure that no storm can down our ship. Because God has promised to guard us from every evil .
God guards you from every evil,
he guards your very life.
He guards you when you leave and when you return,
he guards you now, he guards you always.
(Psalm 121:7-8, MSG)
Eugene H. Peterson writes in A Long Obedience in the Same Direction: “All the water in all the oceans cannot sink a ship unless it gets inside. Nor can all the trouble in the world do harm unless it gets within us.”
Spiritual strength training keeps the ship of faith strong and solid. The most important thing is to stay close to God and his ways. God will make a personal training program for each one of us. God will give us his grace, his power and might to be faithful in our spiritual strength training program. And we will by God’s grace be strong and ready to battle anything that comes our way.
Thank you for loving us so much
that you want to give us life and more life!
Thank you for equipping us not to just survive the storms of life
but to thrive through them.
Thank you for strengthening our faith.
In Jesus’ name,
Q4U: How has God strengthened your faith? What kind of exercises does your spiritual strength-training program have?
Abundant blessings as you keep on strengthening your faith by God’s grace!