Peace. Lift two fingers in the air and you have its symbol. Wave a white flag in the air and you make a plea. Summits are held for it. Deals are made in its name. We want financial peace, peace of mind, peace and quiet. But what about physical peace?
When I was the fitness director at Muscle & Fitness Magazine, peace had a price. Peace required blood, sweat and tears. Peace came with a pump. Peace ran with my homies, pain and progress.
Years later, peace was stubborn. Peace only came when the pain went away. Peace came when the surgery took, when the medicine worked, when the suffering ceased.
This week's theme is about being at peace with everyone, if at all possible when it depends on us (Rom 12:18). And the body, our health - no matter the state - is a means by which we do that. How we handle our gifts and abilities could produce a truce. Where we go in times of sickness is a chance at a treaty. Isn't that the real point? It really isn't about being at peace with my body - God-forbid I minimize the topic down to the preservation of self-acceptance or being comfortable in my own skin - but it's about me being at peace with every body.
Truth is, to be absent of the body is to be present with the Lord. Chew on that. The divine irony for the fitness-minded - as we battle gravity and decide who gets the glory when the byproducts are revealed - is that when we finally lose the skin we're in, we'll realize it.
The goal then, the impossible dream I suppose, is to engage with others wherever we train with them in mind. To live and love like Jesus in the fitness industry I'm convinced in many ways is to steward the body but be absent of it.
- Jimmy Peña