Modify to Edify

I know what it means to lack, and I know what it means to experience overwhelming abundance. For I’m trained in the secret of overcoming all things, whether in fullness or in hunger. And I find that the strength of Christ’s explosive power infuses me to conquer every difficulty. Philippians 4:13 (TPT)

The stay at home order, I must admit, has challenged me to think more creatively and sensibly. Sometimes we fail to realize how good things are till their gone. Teaching at the Rec Center with a class full of students is such a pleasure, with exercise equipment and immediate feedback from the class both close at hand. Now it’s Mornings with Theresa on Facebook Live. Yes, I have a few items, my trusty stability ball, a few sets of weights, scripture, and my imagination. The most challenging part is the technology.

Consider one class for instance. We were enjoying exercising on my deck with the Total Body Challenge. While the monitor showed my entire body, that was just an illusion, as my head was missing for a good portion of the class. My voice was there, my body demonstrating the exercise was there, but I was the headless fitness instructor. In fact, kind of contradicts the name of the class. If you have wondered what’s worse than a bad hair day, trust me, it’s a no head day.

Though increasingly necessary, I have a love hate relationship with technology. In rural areas you never know if the internet is going to be rockets red glare or buffering duds. Now, throw in trying to come up with creative ways to keep the heart rate elevated, while incorporating strength and core exercises, with little to no equipment, and you see my quandary.

Many businesses have found new ways to innovate and be creative to save their customers. They have modified their business plan out of necessity. Survival of the fittest. Many of us have learned to go without the things we thought essential to our lives. Sit down restaurants have become carry out and delivery, simply to maintain that special relationship with their people, their customer family. I must say, it’s a little harder for hair and nail salons to be creative, and for me, that’s one area I have found quite challenging for self-service.

I do feel it’s important for most people to use some sort of resistance while working out. Whether it is weights, a stretch band, soup cans, or milk containers filled with water, we have used all of these over the last few weeks. So, to change things up, I decided to incorporate a chair and some weights into our morning workout. Most people think the chair makes things easy, but nothing could be further from the truth. There are chair squats, crunches, triceps dips, jumping jacks, planks and reverse planks. In my opinion, reverse planks with a chair are far more challenging.

While holding the high plank off the chair, I encouraged my students to go for a set of full toe push-ups, since their feet were already positioned on top of the chair. Now I must be honest with you; the full toe push-up is not one of my favorite things. Yes, it is a challenging exercise but that is not my reason for avoidance. When I place pressure on my chest, the thirteen wires wrapped around my sternum place intense pressure and feel like they are going to burst through my skin. Dropping to my knees on push-ups relieves the pressure and takes away the pain. This modification saves the day!

My students know when certain exercises are less desirable or hard for me because they will hear me say, “This is no joke,” followed by an awkward laugh, or a “Whew,” at the end of a set. We really know each other, praying and sharing God’s blessings and encouragement with one another. I am so grateful we can still gather together, pray, meditate on scripture, and support each other as we deal with life and death issues, family struggles, and the whole stay at home issue. These circumstances, our life, is no joke, but we are not alone, the Holy Spirit is with us. God is moving and strengthening our bodies and hearts for His purposes.

Is there something in your life which is placing unimaginable pressure on you? Is there something burdening you and causing never ending pain? Have you been doing the same things over and over again expecting different results? Sounds like you may need to modify.

Today, right now, put down the things that are separating you from God; the unnecessary things, the selfish desires, and the secret sins. When we turn and face God, repent and confess our sins, we begin to live our life to please Him. In Matthew 22 we read about the Pharisees trying to trap Jesus with a question about the greatest commandment and Jesus replies, “Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind. This is the first and greatest commandment. And the second is like it: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself. All the Law and the Prophets hang on these two commandments.”

Sin tries to trap all of us and separate us from God. So, modify, fall to your knees to relieve the pressure, and edify the Lord.

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