I couldn’t have imagined it would make sense to build on such a set of headlines for a fitness magazine. Yet elements from the dramatic news of March 2011 when brought together help shape perspective for this issue’s theme: CONFIDENCE, How Well Do You Wear It? Let me explain.
Within your physical fitness experience and the broader fitness culture “confidence” often has two extremes. We see images of over-confidence: the obsessed, prideful and self-absorbed attitudes and practices that lead people to be misled about what confidence should really be. On the other end are the many people struggling with a tremendous lack of confidence. They continually struggle with fear, disappointment and lies that they are destined for inevitable defeat.
Few people live their life publicly as actor Elizabeth Taylor did. Despised by some and adored by others, she personified confidence in many ways – sometimes with tremendous grace and passion and other times leaving us to wonder (sometimes in shock) what she was thinking. Perhaps a good glimpse into her personal faith was revealed around age 50 when she said, “I don't entirely approve of some of the things I have done, or am, or have been. But I'm me. God knows, I'm me."
We’re all actors with each other, but God sees who you really are. Your confidence both physically and spiritually will be most efficacious when it is grounded in a genuine peace in your relationship with God. That relationship ultimately shapes your close relationship with others.
The tragic triple-blow to Japan (earthquake, tsunami and nuclear radiation) demands our prayers and commands our attention. Reports of low-level radiation in the United States make us see that the impact has been far-reaching. However the greatest effect is being made on those closest to the source. Undetectable by our usual senses, the profound influence of this radiation is both immediate and long-term.
It is important for you to realize that your life, in much the same way, affects others. Those closest to you will be impacted the most. Not just those with whom you have a close relationship but anyone in close proximity to you. Often that impact can’t be fully measured by the usual signs (perceptions, interactions and reactions). But, who you are and how well you wear it truly affect those around you. That is why the Bible guides us to show hospitality to strangers, keep pure, not be carried away by weird teachings and have confidence that you get your help from God. By shear nature you radiate to all those around you. That can be a dangerous thing if you have no moral absolutes and fear what others will think of you. Instead, be accountable to others and to God to represent truth and act in love.
One more headline recently appeared: NOW GOING TO CHURCH CAN MAKE YOU FAT. It reports, “It’s possible that getting together once a week and associating good works and happiness with eating unhealthy foods could lead to the development of habits that are associated with greater body weight and obesity.”
Researchers tend to couch their findings by using words like, “It’s possible”. I’ll not shy away from being clear and to the point. The lack of commitment among Christians to having and encouraging a continual healthy diet and regular exercise reflects their lack of confidence in God. Christian leaders are chief in promoting this level of spiritual compromise. “Trust in God and lean not on your own understanding” is a Bible command that can’t fully shape your spirit until you let it also dominate your physical body as God intends.
You and I have work to do. A sweet Sunday sermon, a quick workout, a token “God bless you” and another indulgence with food are spiritually dubious behaviors that need to be stopped. Think about the serious impact of your radiation to others then get confident and wear it well.
Train strong in Christ,
-Brad Bloom, Publisher
Brad Bloom is the publisher of Faith & Fitness Magazine the premier source of information, ideas and networking for those pursuing an active physical and spiritual life. He provides leadership to organizations and churches that recognize that growth comes by fueling the passion of members and delivering genuine “intimate care”. He helps businesses to move beyond the cliché concepts of “body, mind, spirit” and become innovative communities. His concepts are defining new directions for the lifestyle industry. A communicator and media producer, Brad is president of Lifestyle Media Group. He lives with his wife and children in the Chesapeake Bay area of Virginia.