No temptation has overtaken you that is not common to man. God is faithful, and he will not let you be tempted beyond your ability, but with the temptation he will also provide the way of escape, that you may be able to endure it. 1 Corinthians 10:13
Last week, we talked about “resistance” as a method for building strength–in our bodies and in our faith. This week’s strength building principle is called “overload”. According to Paige Waehner in her article for about.com entitled “Weight Training 101: Getting Started”, shares the following explanation of this principle:
“To build muscle, you need to use more resistance than your muscles are used to. This is important because the more you do, the more your body is capable of doing…You should be able to finish your last rep with difficulty but also with good form.”
Often when I am in the fitness center, I see people “weight lifting”. Of course I can only assume their motives, but let’s just say for the sake of the discussion, that they are lifting weights in order to build strength. In order for this weight resistance to work, proper overload needs to happen:
1) not so light that you could stand there swinging the dumbells all day (more than muscles are used to)
2) not so heavy that your shoulders, neck, back, or knees can’t stay in proper alignment (good form)
This is similar to how we build spiritual strength. Our key verse describes this method to us:
No temptation has overtaken you that is not common to man. God is faithful, and he will not let you be tempted beyond your ability, but with the temptation he will also provide the way of escape, that you may be able to endure it.
Temptation in our life provides us the opportunity to RESIST! This resistance will build strength in our faith in God. However, it will require certain elements to be effective:
1) The temptation (the thing which we are resisting) must be more than we are used to. When we experience temptations that seem to completely “overload” us, we must remember that although OUR strength may fail, God’s strength never does. According to scripture, He will not allow us to be asked to resist more than is our ability (in Christ).
2) We must maintain proper alignment in order to receive the benefits of this resistance, without injury. Pour physical body keeps us moving effectively, efficiently, and most importantly, safely. Similarly aligning ourselves spiritually will keep us able to resist the things that “overload” us in this world without harming our souls.
How do we do this? We will speak more on aligment next week, but know today that proper aligment starts with the core–in our body and in our soul. Aligning ourselves to this centering force will give us the strength to move against all resistance and build more strength. In our quest to find spiritual strength we must center ourselves on Christ. He is the “way out” the verse speaks of! When we move through our lives resisting the temptations of the world centered and aligned with Christ, we build the strength we need!