In the third century, St. Cyprian wrote to a friend named Donatus: "This seems a cheerful world, Donatus, when I view it from this fair garden under the shadow of these vines. But if I climbed some great mountain and looked out over the wide lands, you know very well what I would see; brigands on the high road, pirates on the seas, in the amphitheaters men murdered to please the applauding crowds, under all roofs misery and selfishness. It really is a bad world, Donatus, an incredibly bad world. Yet, in the midst of it, I have found a quiet and holy people. They have discovered a joy which is a thousand times better than any pleasure of this sinful life. They are despised and persecuted, but they care not. They have overcome the world. These people, Donatus, are the Christians...and I am one of them." (Max Lucado study bible; Gordon Macdonald, Forging a Realworld Faith) I paste that quote because the subject of being quiet and holy has been on my mind lately; quiet as it pertains to humility of health as well as service. In reading the books of Thessalonians and James, I've noticed some common themes, a few of which we're going to dive into next week. But make no mistake, our health can have an eternal impact. Not in the way it looks so much, but in how we use it to serve others. Paul urges us to "lead a quiet life, and to work with your own hands," while James says, "For as the body without the spirit is dead, so faith without works is dead also."
Folks, we are in this place right now to put this body to use for God's kingdom. If we make too much of its reflection, we're vain. If we sit idle and don't put it to work, we waste it. But in a time where health is disregarded as a means of praise, there is a quiet and holy people. They have overcome the world. These people are the Christians, and I am one of them. So are you. Can you think of any higher compliment?
For Discussion: What does quiet and holy mean to you? What comes to mind? Maybe the phrase makes you think of a particular friend, family member or Biblical character. And for those of you in the fitness industry, what sort of battles do you face in this area?
New Series Monday: I'm out of pocket tomorrow, but please join me next week for a new series titled, "Carry On." I hope you all check in each day. You know how I love a good series.
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