with George Ratchford
1) Describe your relationship to/experience with exercise. If it has changed over time, describe the change.I have never been one to exercise for the sake of exercise. I need a goal or a purpose. In the past I have stayed in shape so that I can play sports and be strong for surfing. It’s also for the purpose of feeling better, sleeping better, and self-confidence. Recently, I trained for my first ever half-marathon. The great purpose was to raise money for clean water wells in Africa through Team World Vision. I trained with a team of 30 people from two churches. It was communal, it had a greater purpose and allowed me to push myself to new limits.
2) How has that relationship/experience affected the way you think about your body and/or your self-image?It makes a lot of difference. I feel sharper mentally and spiritually. I feel like I look better and have a better “bounce” to my step. It just feels good.
3) How has that relationship/experience affected the way you relate to others?Since it is mostly about sports and surfing it has all been connected to the relational side of things. The recent Team World Vision experience was phenomenal as it connected the team on a deeply spiritual level.
4) How has that relationship/experience affected your spiritual life?Brings me discipline. Gets me outside. Allows me to connect with others. These are not always the most powerfully spiritual moments, yet they have a way of drawing my attention to God more often. So I would say that it affects it in a subtle yet profound way. It is a discipline that keeps me filled with joy and Christ said he came to bring us a fullness to life (John 10:10).
5) What word of wisdom or encouragement would you offer other people on a similar journey?Allow exercise to fit into the Great Commandment. Make sure the discipline is a part of loving God with your entire self. Also, to use it as a way of self care and loving one’s self more deeply (confidence). Lastly, make sure exercise is communal in some aspects so it allows you to connect with your neighbor.
What about you?
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