singing

Glowing With Health

"Rise and anoint him; this is the one." --1 Samuel 16:12

Read: 1 Samuel 16

Believe it or not, I used to sing solos in church and school. Growing up in a musical family (on mom's side) I guess you could say it was in my blood. Too funny: my first solo in the 4th grade was John Denver's "Take Me Home Country Roads." I remember mother made me wear this Davy Crockett-looking jacket with leather strands hanging down from everywhere. I can assure you I wasn't much to listen to, but I bet I was something to behold. She probably still has the jacket.

Speaking of something to behold, my favorite solo in church was a song about young David called "Shepherd Boy." I thought of that old song yesterday while continuing to read about Samuel. See Samuel was the one who anointed David as the future king. The last of all the brothers to pass in front of Samuel, the Lord said, "Rise up and anoint him. This is the one."

I know I've talked about David in the past -- about how he chose stones to defeat his giant. But something in my reading caught my attention. As he was being brought before Samuel, the Bible says of young David, "He was glowing with health..." (ch.16:12) Neat right? This is the way they described the shepherd boy from the pastures of Bethlehem. The shepherd boy who would drop the armor and then drop Goliath. The shepherd boy who would hide in caves, fight entire armies, and write Psalms. And above all, this is the way they described the shepherd boy who would come to be known as a man after God's own heart.

Friends, as we close-out the week, may that be our goal -- to glow with health, if for no other reason but that our hearts are looking more and more like His.

--Jimmy Peña

For Discussion: I doubt there's a higher compliment in all the Bible than what David is known for: For his heart to look like God's. Anyone agree? And doesn't the thought of "glowing in health" do something to your heart? It does mine. What does it mean to you?

Weekend Prayer: Lord, may the cooling of our passion for you bother us more than weaker muscle, broken bones, higher bodyfat, slower times and fewer reps. At the end of each week, we want our hearts to look like yours. In Jesus' name we pray and for His sake, Amen.

POSE NO. 3: WARRIOR II

Warrior 2 is super similar to Warrior 1, which we learned yesterday. "The benefits are similar, except Warrior 2 taps into the flexibility of the hips more than Warrior 1," says Brooke Boon, founder of Holy Yoga. "Warrior 2 is a strong pose and always reminds me of the strength of our God -- how nothing is impossible for Him and how His promises are always true. It reminds me that He is faithful even when I am faithless to believe because He can never disown Himself. That is great news, friends. For when we are weak, He is strong."

>> Give the pose a try here!

 

Teach The World To Sing

"That if you confess with your mouth, "Jesus is Lord," and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved." --Romans 10:9

Read: Romans 10

Yesterday at the gym I was listening to a great new soundtrack filled with well-known classics in my headphones. The voices on this one song and the catchy chorus were just too good not to join in. So without hesitation, I began to add a harmony line; something I learned from countless days singing with Mom.

Well, as I got off the machine to start lifting, one of the employees nearby raised his eyebrows and looked at me as if to say, "Don't quit your day job, pal." I grinned and chuckled to myself. But it dawned on me. He didn't know I was singing the harmony. See, even if you're in tune, any harmony line doesn't sound right to others if they can't hear the melody.

Folks, our lives, the daily routines and these bodies are merely harmonies. Let's remember that we're out of tune if we're too focused on our minor line, never letting others hear who we're listening to. You know, "I'd like to teach the world to sing, in perfect harmony," but that can only happen if I'm in unison with God's favorite song of all -- and the only one He lifts His Holy hand for silence to hear -- the song of Jesus.

--Jimmy Peña

TURN UP THE VOLUME

A few years ago, PrayFit co-founder Eric Velazquez, Dr. Jim Stoppani and I formed the Weider Research Group when we worked together at Muscle & Fitness Magazine. One month in particular, we performed a study to determine how music affects strength.

We had a group of trained athletes complete a shoulder workout on two separate occasions. Both sessions consisted of three sets of dumbbell overhead presses, three sets of Smith machine upright rows, and three sets of dumbbell side laterals, all done using their 10-rep max and taking each set to failure. They did one workout while listening to their choice of music on headphones and during the other workout they listened to no music.

We reported at the 2008 annual meeting of the National Strength and Conditioning Association (NSCA) that the subjects were able to do an average of one more rep per set when they listened to music as compared to when they did not.

The take-home message from this study is obvious: listen to your preferred music when you train (or during whatever activity you enjoy). Being able to complete one more rep with the same weight, or going that extra 1/4 mile, is what can make all the difference in your physical progression.

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