“I am able to do all things through Him who strengthens me.”
– Philippians 4:13
Most mornings, I start the day with a nice, long bike ride. I usually go anywhere from 25 to 30-plus miles. My knees are shot from years of playing sports, so cycling is my workout of choice. I enjoy biking on the winding, narrow country roads in southern New Hampshire, and my daily ride always leads me to the same place.
The saying goes that “all roads lead to Rome,” but, for me, all roads lead up the Route 13 hill going into Mont Vernon. This hill is over a mile long and has a couple very steep spots on the ride up. Most mornings, I tackle “Hill-Zilla” (as in Godzilla) twice a bike ride, and I throw another mile-long hill in between. Like I said, I really enjoy cycling and, after taking a few too many hockey pucks to the head, I find cycling up big hills to be fun.
Still, no matter how many times I find myself trekking up these hills, they never seem to get any easier. Some days they aren’t as hard as other days, but to say they get easier would be wrong. Many times, while slowly peddling up these hills, I keep shifting through my gears quickly trying to make the peddling easier and easier. Even after shifting through all the gears, I have often found myself trying to shift into a gear that just isn’t there! I think, “If I only had one more gear, this hill would be a piece of cake,” but it just isn’t there. The quads burn, the lungs get tight, and my fingers work the gears as fast as my feet pedal just looking for something to make the ride easier.
Fortunately, in our Christian life, God doesn’t count the gears that we “shift” through spiritually in our lives. He knows we are sinners; He knows we are going to make mistakes (sometimes the same ones over and over again), and each time we come back to Him, God is there with open arms, ready to help us through our “spiritual shift.” With Him, we’ll never run out of spiritual “gears” to shift through; He is always there, and He always will be!
We’ve all been there: backslidden, not reading our Bibles, not going to church, thinking it’s been too long—“I can’t go back now. What will everybody think? What will everybody be saying behind my back?” Let me tell you this: Their score sheet doesn’t matter. And best of all? God doesn’t keep one! He’s still there, waiting for you, waiting to help you through this next “spiritual shift” that needs to take place in your life. One that will lead to greater blessings and a deeper relationship with your Heavenly Father, who loves you more than you can imagine.
1. Is there a time and a place that you remember accepting Jesus Christ as your Savior and surrendering to Him as the Lord of your life?
2. Is there something in your past that you are holding on to and not giving to the Lord?
3. Do you always find something else to do to instead of reading your Bible, doing devotions or even going to church?
4. What’s keeping you from making that spiritual “shift” today and getting back on the right track? WORKOUT:
ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
Lenette M. Peterson is the former athletic director and Huddle Coach at Milford Christian Academy and is currently a State Representative