Spiritual Exercises

Bible Reading: 1 Timothy 4:7-8

We continued to take personal inventory, and when we were wrong, promptly admitted it.

It is amazing to behold what a human being can achieve through a consistent, disciplined effort. How many times have we watched seasoned gymnasts or other athletes and marveled at the ease with which they performed their sport? We realize that they developed that ability through rigorous training, which is what sets the true athlete apart from the spectator. There are parallels to the discipline of continuing our inventories.

Paul wrote to Timothy, "Train yourself to be godly. ‘Physical training is good, but training for godliness is much better' " (1 Timothy 4:7-8). The word translated training specifically referred to the disciplined training done by gymnasts in Paul's day.

Spiritual strength and agility only come through practice. We need to develop our spiritual muscles through consistent effort and daily discipline. Continuing to take personal inventory is one of the disciplines we can develop. The Bible describes it as having our "senses exercised to discern both good and evil" (Hebrews 5:14, nkjv). Like the athlete, we can motivate ourselves to continue in a disciplined routine by looking to our reward. This kind of discipline "is much better, promising benefits in this life and in the life to come" (1 Timothy 4:8). We must not expect overnight results. As we continue practicing these disciplines each day, we'll eventually grow to enjoy the benefits.

Our continued inventory will keep us spiritually fit and strong in the face of temptation.

 

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Taken from The Life Recovery Devotional: Thirty Meditations from Scripture for Each Step in Recovery by Stephen Arterburn and David Stoop. Copyright © 1991 by Stephen Arterburn and David Stoop. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers, Inc. All rights reserved.