Your Compass For Goals That Last
Standing outside on our front porch in the twilight waiting for my client to arrive, I brushed away moths who clamored their way to the lamp light. “Why are moths attracted to light?” I asked myself…then turned to Google. One theory is that the light of the traveling moon helps chart their course of migration—they use the lights of the sky to guide them home. But when artificial light is present, they flock to those instead, get confused, and go off course.
Oh, what an apt metaphor for physical training. My spiritual word for my client that morning was “self-control.” In 1 Corinthians 9:25 Paul shows how an athlete exercises self-control in all things for the perishable wreath, but the Christian aims for the imperishable, which is to see Jesus face to face, to stand in His presence by faith and hear His words wash over us like a healing glow: “Well done, good and faithful servant” (Matthew 25:23).
Train for the Unseen
If I direct my client to train only for what is seen, to seek after a lower body fat percentage, a certain number of stair flights to master before getting winded, I would be selling her short and leading her off course--holding up a light bulb.
Once a moth reaches the light bulb, it doesn’t know what to do. Once a client can fit into the dress, or loses the weight, she doesn’t know where to go from there, except to pick another light bulb and work until she reaches that one, in an endless pursuit of stringed lights that will never truly satisfy. I want to point her to the sun.
In the Wellness Revelation book, Alisa mentions a highly self-disciplined client training to the point of a figure competition and then saying, “Is this it?” And walks away disappointed and disenchanted. If you have ever asked yourself this, consider consulting a different compass.
Goals Are Lights On the Path
Goals are good, yes, but if your ultimate goal is one you can touch, beware: "what is seen is temporary, and what is unseen is eternal" (2 Corinthians 4:18). Let us keep an agile spirit and change directions when the Lord calls us another way. Numbers on a scale and being able to touch your toes and scaling walls in the event of an emergency are all useful, but they are lightbulbs. Don't stay there.
Do not be thrown off course by shiny fads.
Do not dwell in restrictive diets or comfortable routines.
Think of goals as bulbs lighting the path to your ultimate purpose. If you reach a goal by the grace of God, take some time to celebrate and dance by the light!
On Our Way Home
After my client was good and sweaty, I sent her off with a prayer for the day, to follow Jesus and be filled with the joy of His presence. I went in and turned off the front porch light. The sun had risen.
The moths fell away with the dawn, but they taught me an important lesson. The moth's ordained purpose is to migrate home.
This world is not our home. We are sojourners, but we do not wander. We follow Jesus. He makes His home in us. Let us make the temple of our body, the habitation of the Holy Spirit, a healthy, hospitable place.
As we stay focused on the Son and allow the Light of the World to fill us, we will light the way for others!
Reflect and Respond
- Do you get easily distracted by the latest trends?
- Are you stuck in a health rut?
- Think about the decisions you make regarding your health. Do they have a purpose? If you aren't sure what your purpose is, take a moment and ask the Lord where He is leading you. "If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask God, who gives generously to all without reproach, and it will be given him." James 1:5
- How can being obedient in taking care of your health help light the way for others?