Flesh Under Fire!

1 Corinthians 9:27 “I discipline my body and keep it under control, lest after preaching to others I myself should be disqualified.”

We are a society of consumers. Our entire Australian society is built around serving the needs, wants and appetites of the consumer. This mindset has brought with it an over indulgence of the flesh. Per capita we are the most obese nation on earth and our medical bills and booming fitness industry is evidence that our over indulgence is having a negative effect on us.

Some people might think health and fitness is not a spiritual matter but it actually is. The Apostle Paul did comment once that bodily training has some value… Paul understood that his flesh, given free reign, could disqualify him from the race of faith. He saw the need to keep it under fire and in check not just for his physical well being but for his spiritual well being as well.

Many moons ago I used to be a personal trainer and run my own business, as well as working in fitness centers throughout Melbourne. As well as this I trained and competed as a track runner and competitive powerlifter among other sports. I have always valued my physical well being, seeing it as a spiritual issue as much as anything else. I actually feel closer to God when I am physically fit and healthy. 

Simone and I work out together on a Saturday morning in our home gym set up in our garage. We have a treadmill, free weights (barbell, dumbbell), chin up and dip bar, bench press, squat rack, swiss ball, skipping rope, step up box, mats and machine weights set up ready for a workout any time. We can be found in the ‘House of Pain’ most early mornings of the week because we see the value of keeping our flesh under fire and not allowing our physical bodies to become a spiritual weakness.

I understand that Paul’s words in Corinthians goes beyond just physical health and fitness to our thought life, words, motivations and actions of our sinful nature but I also see the need for Australians to keep their flesh under fire and take dominion over their physical well being. I want to be fit and healthy for anything that God brings my way to do and I don’t want my body to become the point of weakness in my faith journey.

What about you? I encourage you to get serious about your health and well being. Spend approximately 20-30mins each day working on your health and fitness – walk, run, go to the gym, swim, bike, lift weights, stretch, play a sport… Do something and start to rule your flesh or it will rule you. People who discipline themselves in their physical well being are also able to discipline themselves in other areas of life. It’s a principle that carries through to the spiritual.

Lead the Change!

One Response to “Flesh Under Fire!”

  1. Of course we need to make sure our flesh doesn’t rule us…but in the effort to ‘control’ our body, there is also the possibility that through this, it will once again end up controlling us…Eating Disorders, Poor Body Image, Excercise Addiction. Overcoming our carnal nature and desires is one thing, taking too much control and spending too much time on ‘graveclothes’ can take us away from what God has for us and become a different addiction. Satan will prey on anything he can!

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