lame

Pick Up Your Bed

"I say to you, arise, take up your bed, and go to your house." --Mark 2:11

Read: Mark 2

It took four men to get him near Jesus. Four men who wouldn't stop until they made a breakthrough, literally. The bible says that "when they had broken through, they let down the bed on which the paralytic was lying." Reading this story a few weeks ago, some things dawned on me. First, the breakthrough -- the realization that there was no other option; no Plan B. Jesus was in the healing business and their friend was buying.

Then, before Jesus does for the paralytic what the man thought he needed most, Jesus says, "Your sins are forgiven you." (Wait, what? His sins? Why not first heal his legs?, I wondered.) Then Jesus answered my question when He asked the scribes, "Which is easier, to say to the paralytic, 'Your sins are forgiven you,' or to say, 'Arise, take up your bed and walk?'"

In case there was any doubt of His ability to forgive sins, Jesus went ahead and said to the paralytic, "I say to you, arise, take up your bed, and go to your house." A paralyzed man carrying his prison back home is enough to quiet the doubters. And here's my last thought...he carried his bed home. Jesus put him to work. He didn't say, "Tell others what I did for you," or "Show off your legs." No, carrying his bed said it all.

You'll forgive the long entry, but all I want to do is carry my bed. Our blessing of health is an opportunity to go to work; for family, friends, those less fortunate, our health is a means of praise. Someone you know needs a breakthrough. I did. And I'm betting the healed man in our story lifted other people's burdens from that day forward, wouldn't you agree? If you do, pick up your bed. Let's go to work.

--Jimmy Peña

For Discussion: Who are you in today's story? Are you in need of a breakthrough? Dealing with an illness, infirmity or other struggle? Perhaps you're a friend, helping someone through the roof by praying for them, listening to them? Maybe you feel like you're one of the crowd, the onlookers, not really engaged either way, be it with your health or the health of someone else. Well, we know who we are NOT in this story, so let's go. Who needs prayer? Let's lift someone through the roof. Let's place someone you know and love as close the healer as we know how to. As always, simply say "Unspoken" and the team and readers will pray for you.

WEIGHT LOSS X FACTOR: SLEEP

How did you sleep last night? While people desperate to lose a few pounds and inches like to focus on fitness and nutrition, there are a number of factors that can work for you -- or against you. One that is typically underrated is good, old fashioned shut-eye. Find out what the research says about how all those late nights can be moving the scale in the wrong direction.

>> Click here for the study from CNN Health.

JOIN THE "DAILY" CROWD

Thousands of people have chosen to receive the PrayFit Daily in their inboxes each morning. If you haven't signed up for this complimentary service already, simply click the links provided here. Click, type, send -- it could be the most rewarding 30 seconds you spend on the computer this morning! And if you want to help us continue our faith-and-fitness revival -- you can do so by sending friends this link or sharing it with your social networks!:

SUBSCRIBE: http://bit.ly/cSd8tp

BRING PRAYFIT TO YOUR TOWN

Sometimes, it's just a family that needs recalibrating in the areas of faith and fitness. But sometimes, it's your church family that could use a little tune-up. Congregations across the country have welcomed Jimmy and his message of health as a means of praise, using it as a way to kick off a revival of sorts...and your town could be next. Contact us at info@prayfit.com to schedule a visit from the PrayFit team! As always, for churches and other non-profit events there is never a speaking fee. Talk to your pastors and leaders. Reach out to us and let's see health as a means of praise, together.

The Temptation of Pride

"Men of Israel, why do you marvel at this?" --Acts 3:11

Read: Acts 3

When Peter and John came across the lame man at the temple gate, Peter said to him, "Look at us." When the lame man fixed his eyes on them, Peter said, "Silver and gold I do not have, but what I do have I give you: In the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, rise up and walk." (Acts 3:6) And as you'll see later in the passage, all the people later saw the man walking, leaping and praising God, and they ran to Peter and John in awe.

But what Peter said to them should rock our world. Peter said, "Men of Israel, why do you marvel at this? Or why look so intently at us, as though by our own power or godliness we made this man walk?" (v.12) Peter wanted nothing to do with credit. He wanted out of the way. Any praise was deflected before it was uttered. The last thing he wanted was for the people to miss the point of the miracle.

The temptation of pride. Tough for many Christians in the fitness industry. Torn, because the most difficult battle for the gifted Christian athlete isn't the work it takes in the gym, but in the aftermath of pride. Ironic isn't it? Peter and John told the lame man to look at them, but they didn't want to be seen.

--Jimmy Peña

For Discussion: If Christians aren't promoting humility, modesty and meekness in the fitness industry, who will? If not you, who? Are we desperate for others to "look at us" in order to be seen or for them to see Christ? What changes do you need to make in order to be seen less? Knowing that God opposes the proud, in what ways can you follow Peter's example? We know it's odd for a fitness company to NOT be about the body, but then again, our health was important to God long before the fitness industry; an industry that needs revolutionaries to rock its world. Revolutionaries who don't want the crowd to miss the point of the miracle. Will you be one this week?

HEALTH & FITNESS TIP

As summer begins to wane, people are making last-ditch efforts to get in shape. But the key to success may not lie in your routine, or even your diet. To find out what the most important factor is during this time of year, click here.

SIGN UP FOR THE DAILY!

Nearly 10,000 people have chosen to receive the PrayFit Daily in their inboxes each morning. If you haven't signed up for this free service already, simply click the links provided here. Click, type, send -- it could be the most rewarding 30 seconds you spend on the computer this morning! And if you want to help us go viral with this sign-up drive -- if you want to help us continue our faith-and-fitness revival -- you can do so by sending friends this link:

SUBSCRIBE: http://bit.ly/cSd8tp

But He Did...

"The people were amazed when they saw the mute speaking, the crippled made well, the lame walking and the blind seeing. And they praised the God of Israel." --Matthew 15:31

Read: Matthew 15

What a week. If you missed any of the entries of healing and faith, please take a few minutes to scroll the archives. But as we turn the page on our topic, an entry from February that I wrote in the midst of my storm came to mind today. It was called, "But Even If He Doesn't." Do you remember it? Here's an excerpt.

"At the edge of a fiery furnace, Shadrach, Meshack and Abednego had a decision. Bow to an idol or be thrown in a furnace. They chose faith, believing that God would deliver them from the very fire that tested it. But then they said, 'But even if He doesn't...' That part of the verse has taken up residence inside my heart this week. They didn't jump knowing they'd be delivered. They jumped knowing the Deliverer. I'm shaking my head as I type this sentence. I want an 'Even if He doesn't' kind of faith. Save me, help me, heal me. But even if He doesn't..."

Folks, we all struggle. But I'm fixing my hopes on the promise of eternal life to make sense of the struggles in this one. These bodies -- as frail as they are at times -- are God-woven miracles; temporary on purpose and built "for" a purpose. And I promise you, when mine catches back up with my spirit, look out. After all, back in February I said "But even if He doesn't..."

Hmm...but He did.

--Jimmy Peña

STAT OF THE DAY: If you watched the presidential debates this week, or even if you didn't, you likely realize that health care and the economy are critical issues in this election. But lost in the political posturing of the high cost of health care are the root causes of the spiraling costs. According to a recent report by MSNBC, obesity costs the U.S. $190 billion per year in health care and lost work productivity. Will that come up in the debates? Should it?

PRAYFIT TV Check out and share this inspiring video about the transformative power physical stewardship

Jimmy Peña's message of "Life is not about the body, but health is a means of praise" is being well-received by congregations around the country. His story-telling approach to how a healthy body can strengthen the body of Christ and inspire abundant living is a message you don't want to miss.

>> For ministry assistance or to get Jimmy out to your church, write us at info@prayfit.com.

In The Temple

"The blind and the lame came to him in the temple, and he healed them." --Matthew 21:14

Read: Matthew 21

When Jesus entered the temple, what He found didn't resemble its purpose. It didn't take Him long to overturn some tables and drive out those who mistreated His holy place. Interestingly, the very next verse says, "The blind and the lame came to him in the temple, and he healed them."

Friends, the enemy wants us to abuse the temple, this body. He wants us to either neglect it so we can't live an abundant life, or he wants us to lose perspective with vain eyes. If you can't see beyond the physical, or if you haven't given your health enough attention, ask Jesus to overturn some tables. He can rebuild what we've destroyed. After all, it's His temple. And that's where He heals the blind and the lame.

--Jimmy Peña

WORKOUT OF THE WEEK: 24-MINUTE COMPLEX

After a five-minute warm-up, you'll dive right in to the lower body complex. Move from exercise to exercise without rest. Once you have completed the leg complex, you'll move directly into the upper body complex. Keep the same cadence, moving quickly between exercises -- minimizing rest will help you keep to the 24-minute mark we've assigned here. If you adhere to the "rest minimal" policy, the 24-minute mark should get you through the lower body and upper body complexes four times each.

The pace provides a powerful fat-burning punch and the multi-joint nature of the exercises creates a powerful metabolic effect, which extends your calorie burn long past your final rep. This workout can also produce measurable gains in strength and endurance fairly quickly. To start, try this workout 2-3 times per week, always on non-consecutive days to maximize recovery between sessions.

LOWER BODY Static Wall Squat (hold a 90-degree squat against the wall for 1 minute) Jump Squat (1 minute) Static Wall Squat (1 minute)

--Hold your wall squat in a position that puts your thighs parallel to the floor. If you can't hold this position, you can increase the angle at your knees so that you are standing slightly taller. But try to start as low as you comfortably can, moving up the wall only as you fail at the lower position.

UPPER BODY Push-Up (complete as many push-ups as possible for 1 minute) Plank (hold the plank for 1 minute) Push-Up (complete as many push-ups as possible for 1 minute)

--If you need to modify and do your push-ups from the knees, please do so. Ideally, you should resort to the knees version only once you have failed the standard version -- even if it's only a few. This will ensure that you progress toward being able to complete more standard push-ups in the long run.

>> For more exercise descriptions and videos, click here.