FAITHful Fitness: All or Nothing


Come to me, all who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.  Take my yoke upon you, and learn from me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls.  For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.”  Matthew 11:28-30

This might look like the beginning of a post about resting in fitness, but it is not.  In fact, it is a post about work—hard work.

I have been thinking about hard work lately.  Recovering from an injury to my back made all of my fitness “work” go from requiring what one would consider a normal amount of effort to requiring more than I thought I could give.  Sometimes, knowing that I could not do what I once could and even being unsure what I COULD do made me feel like just giving up.  I questioned if it was even worth it.

When you used to do more or feel like you should be able to do more, it is hard to do less.  I think, “It’s all or nothing, I can’t do all of my workouts maybe do nothing?!”

But I know this is not what God wants from me.  As it says in His word, “NOTHING is impossible for God.”  When I choose to do nothing, I am not only denying that God can work through anything in my life, I am also missing the opportunity to share God’s strength through my own weakness.

“All or nothing” is not about whether or not I can do “all” of what I could do before or “all” of what the exercise experts tell me I “should” do to keep myself healthy.  Giving my all means giving it everything I have to give today.  That may not be as much as it was yesterday and it may be more than I can give tomorrow, but each day, I give it my “all.”

I have a friend who says it like this, “When I put my head on the pillow at night, I look back on my day and say, ‘I did the best I could today.  I gave it everything I had.  It was my best- for today.’”

In sports, fitness, and life, I think it’s important to know at the end of the game, workout, or well, the end– that I left it all on the field, that I gave it all I had, that I was “all in.”

When I think about “all or nothing” it is no longer about me, what I can give.  Rather it is about what God has given me through His Son.  Jesus is my “all in all” without Him I am nothing.  I can do ALL things through Him who gives me the strength to do it.   In Him, the “work” becomes easy and the “workload” becomes light.


3 thoughts on “FAITHful Fitness: All or Nothing

  1. You’ve got it right, at least from my experience. Not only with fitness, nor
    injury, nor a discouraging diagnosis, nor whatever, in time we come to places
    that we can’t do what we once could. We must choose whether we’ll use what we still have to the best of our ability in God’s strength/power or not. To God be the glory!

  2. To do what we can do no matter where we are in life is a reminder that we are all of value to God. All or nothing thinking along with perfectionist thinking keeps many from exploring the gifts God has given them.

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