By Jadihel Rodriguez, FAITH RXD Houma, LA Chapter Director.
Two weeks ago we looked at restorative power. Specifically, that we must not lose faith in the fact that God sees restoration when we see destruction. For this week, I want to walk us through the gift of power.
Have you thanked God for the opportunity to steward your body before the WOD? Are you in a mindset of gratitude and not consumption? As you do this workout, remember the Spirit that indwells you, focus on the power that comes with that. Be confident and aggressive, remembering the fight is not yours anyway, and victory is not measured by time, rounds, or reps, but in a posture of power!
21 min AMRAP
7 power cleans
7 bar facing burpees
7 power snatches
7 bar facing burpees
2 Timothy 1:7 ESV
“For God gave us a spirit not of fear but of power and love and self-control.”
Last week I told ya’ll I had a really cool message on power based on 2 Timothy 1:7. And if there is one thing I will never forget my Father teaching me is, “A man is only as good as his word” So here we are, fam! Two weeks into the launch of FAITH RXD HANDS, hurricane Ida, and what I truly believe is God’s purpose for my life and ministry. How can I talk about anything else but this scripture and what it means in our lives?!
When I read this scripture, I first thought about Paul’s compare and contrast method to illustrate the difference between a Spirit-led life versus a flesh-led life. Fear versus power. So let’s line ’em up! What is power not?
Yet, we go through life daily facing these things, constantly! In our marriages, our friendships, our careers, school, you name it! Heck, many of us face this every day when we walk into the gym and see a particular movement or a specific workout with a heavy load or complex skillset involved. For me, it’s heavy overhead squats; for you, it may be climbing a fifteen-foot rope. We all have that one movement or thing that causes us to go as far as even skipping a workout.
When we take our eyes off the gift of the Spirit, we allow fear to win. Win at the gym. Win in our marriage. Win in our friendship. Win in our lives. And the cost may not always initially appear to be great, but I beg you to see just how great it can be to live a flesh-led life.
Ephesians 6:13 ESV
“Therefore take up the whole armor of God, that you may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand firm.”
FAITH RXD friends and family, stand firm! I literally clench my fist as I type this. I grind my teeth. I huff and puff! Much like a CrossFit coach, before the team takes the floor before a competition, I want to rise up and move you to appreciate the gravity of it all.
This is life or death. Do not give up an inch! We must fight for that inch! Die for that inch! The enemy is looking for the tiniest crack to sneak into your life in the Life Games (not CrossFit Games). And I’m sorry to break it to you, but he will find it, and he will exploit it. Only one perfect person has walked this earth with the ability to not let him, and we nailed Him to a cross.
This is why I am dramatic. This is why the Word implores you to drown your life in the Spirit of Christ! Too many Christians today treat faith as something that we do on Sundays. Heck, if we are lucky, we get Christians who do faith on Sundays, before they go to bed, and when they eat a meal. But we are called to stand firm in the armor of God, and that means we do not give up a single inch. We do not give the flesh our careers. We do not share with the flesh the music we listen to or the movies we watch. We do not provide the flesh our fitness and our workouts. And we certainly do not offer the flesh our marriages and our relationship with our kids.
But how do we go on the offensive in a world full of fear and hate? How do we live a Spirit-led life?
John 14:23-26 ESV
“Jesus answered him, “If anyone loves me, he will keep my word, and my father will love him, and we will come to him and make our home with him. Whoever does not love me does not keep my words. And the word that you hear is not mine but the father’s who sent me.
“These things I have spoken to you while I am still with you. But the Helper, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, he will teach you all things and bring to your remembrance all that I have said to you.”
The Word of God is inerrant and sufficient for all things. That includes instructions to help us discern between our flesh and the Spirit. It is by far the most challenging part of walking with Christ for me. When is it that my sinful heart desires something versus when is it that it is the Spirit?
I ask myself this question probably every day. And every time, I ask two simple questions:
- Is it Godly?
- Is it biblical?
The fact of the matter is that John 14:23-26 gives us a clear picture of the role of God’s Spirit living in us. To point us back to Jesus and His teachings. Once we can answer those two questions, is it Godly and biblical, our job is to go! Go be doers of the Word. Keep His commandments. You have the power!
So what does the gift of the power of the Spirit look like?
If you do not know the verse I am referencing, that’s OK. Google the list and highlight the verse in your Bible. Commit it to memory, and get to work. Go on the offensive!
Worried that you may not be able to?
Don’t worry… it’s not up to you anyways.
2 Corinthians 13:5 ESV
“Examine yourselves to see whether you are in the faith. Test yourselves. Or do you not realize this about yourselves, that Jesus Christ is in you?—unless indeed you fail to meet the test!”
Like… WOW! Sometimes, when I am reading scripture or typing furiously away at these messages, I wonder. Am I alone in being mindblown by the Word?
Jesus Christ lives in me! It drives me to my knees. It fills my eyes with tears. In all His wisdom, the Triune God manifested Himself in humanity through Christ, and in Spirit, made a way to live in me! If that’s not mind-blowing, I do not know what is.
That is the key right there. The truth is I could have avoided what by my word count is approximately one thousand words before and just said this:
When we give Lordship of our heart and life to Christ, God provides us with the gift of the Holy Spirit. His Spirit indwells us and gives us the power to live a life free of fear. For fear is a byproduct of impending punishment, and we, by the power of the cross, have the gift of a Fear Less life. Now that is power!
So how does all this become practical in our fitness Jadi?
I’m glad you asked!
I will assume that 99% of the readers reading this came into CrossFit just like me. They went with a consumer mindset. They asked themselves, what can CrossFit do for me? How can I lose weight? How can I look better in front of the mirror? How can I get stronger, build muscle? What cool doors will CrossFit open for me? Will it bring friends? Community? The potential to coach? Compete? Will I get to post on social media about my wins under the bar? Will I get to share about my steps on a podium, and the mirror selfies will drive the likes and move the endorphins to tell me that I am good? That I am worth it? That I belong?
If there is one natural sinful pitfall that I mourn in our fitness community is this. We are littered with believers that still approach fitness from a consumer standpoint and not a biblical one. The minute you understand the Spirit of God lives in you, your life should change. Your nutrition, workouts, yes, even your stretching becomes something you approach with a sense of duty. Duty to live in a manner of gratitude and love for the temple that is your body. A body that you nailed to the cross and gave up to the Lord Jesus Christ the minute the gift of grace, through faith, saved a wretch like you.
Dramatic? My wife always says I am. But consider this, “…your adversary the devil prowls around like a roaring lion, seeking someone to devour.” 1 Peter 5:8.
Will you be devoured inch by inch by the evil one? Or as our signature t-shirts say, will you be Fear-Less.
It’s either err on Spirit-led in all I do or err in flesh-led. Even my fitness. Especially, in the other areas of my life.
QUESTIONS FOR GROUP DISCUSSION OR PERSONAL JOURNALING:
- What was the workout like for you? Did God reveal anything to you while you did it?
- Looking at the list describing fear, and the list describing power, which one more defines your life?
- What ways were you challenged by in today’s message?