On Spiritual and Physical Training

“For physical training is of some value, but godliness has value for all things, holding promise for both the present life and the life to come.” 1 Timothy 4:8

It is so difficult for us homeschooling moms to find time among the laundry, the schoolwork, and the cooking, for spiritual, let alone physical training, but we must not neglect either. I have found that my spiritual and physical training is the most essential time of my day. I need this time to be alone and quiet, so I can listen and commune with my heavenly Father.

In order to find time to be alone with God, I have combined it with physical exercise. Four days a week, after school, I go jogging with my dog at my side and Bible verse in my hand. During my 45-minute jog, I memorize scripture, pray, and listen to the Lord.

Memorizing scripture has become absolutely dear to my heart. I don’t mean memorizing random scriptures that pertain to this problem and that, but I mean memorizing entire books of the Bible. The first book I memorized was the Book of Ephesians, mostly while jogging, one verse at a time. I am currently working on memorizing the book of Romans and keeping a goal of a four-chapter rotation in my head. As I jog, I recite (in my head) the 4 chapters that I have memorized and then repeat, at least 5 times, the new verse, which I have written on my sticky note. Memorizing whole books is the best way to understand the entire context of the letter, prophesy, or story. It is also an incredible way to commune with God. He talks to me through His words. I believe it is the closest thing to Adam’s daily walk in the garden with the Lord before his fall. I am convicted, called, and encouraged through this practice.

Memorizing scripture takes extreme mind discipline, and so does jogging up and down hills for 5 miles. Both of these disciplines keep me focused and self-controlled during the day. The scripture verses help when I really need to take my thoughts captive, while jogging keeps my immune system strong and my lungs and heart healthy.

This time alone with the Lord for my physical and spiritual well-being is a life long commitment and I let no excuse prevail. When my twins were infants, I jogged with them in a stroller. Sometimes I jog when my husband is home so that he can watch the kids, but most of the time, my oldest is home to watch them all. When it rains, I get on the treadmill. I do prefer to jog outside, so if it is not pouring rain when I am ready to run, I will go outside. My dog is happier to get out too, although we have been caught in a few hailstorms.

In other seasons of my life I have exercised to workout videos. It is also possible to commune with the Lord while exercising to workout videos. Once you are familiar with the routine, turn off the sound and memorize scripture. Pilates and yoga are my favorite exercise forms by which to memorize scripture.

Spiritual and physical training is just simply a priority. It is as important to me as eating. Building godliness while physically training benefits both the present life and the life to come. Disciplined moms train up disciplined children.

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