March 16, 2011Read: Matthew 17

"Then the disciples came to Jesus in private and asked, 'Why couldn't we drive it out?'" --Matthew 17:19.

Thinking about 2011 goals is pretty exciting (and daunting). My heart skips a beat when I think of some of the big mountains my little legs want to climb. Dreams are awesome, aren't they? It's like saying, "That one, God. Yes! Let's conquer that!" And with a little faith, we chase them.

Well, just as soon as we began our road trip home the other day, I saw a sign: DELAYS AHEAD. I didn't give it much thought. A few miles later: EXPECT DELAYS. I looked at my watch. "So far so good," I reasoned. So I shrugged, turned up the radio and set my cruise control. But sure enough the next sign literally read: EXPECT EXTREME DELAYS SOON. They weren't kidding about the "extreme" or "soon" parts. In fact, I knew it was gonna be bad when I saw cars pulling off the highway by any means possible to find a short cut. Our quick five-hour trip had quickly become eight.

You know, as we begin to think about, pray for and jot down faith and fitness goals for the upcoming year, we can expect delays. Even though we might hit the new year at full speed, the chances of a few roadblocks are high. But let's not quit or lose heart. Whatever the next bend brings, the good Lord will get us through. So let's stay on the right road and keep the faith in drive.


Application: As we approach a new season, have you hit any roadblocks or delays on your toward your goals? How's your bible study and prayer time? What about your eating habits and exercise routines? It is time to recalibrate?


If you're a dog owner, you're already at a huge advantage in your quest for a slimmer physique. A study published in the Journal of Physical Activity and Health found that 61% of dog owners walked their dog for at least 10 minutes at a time, while 27% took the family pet out walking 150 minutes per week or more. The odds of getting 150 minutes of walking per week -- a baseline level of fitness -- were 34% higher for dog walkers compared to non-dog owners and the odds of doing any leisure time physical activity were an astounding 69% higher. The most staggering statistic, perhaps, was the fact that 39% of the respondents in the study didn't walk their dogs at all!  Even our canines are suffering from our ambivalence to exercise.