We are born for motion.
And sometimes, oh how we fight it. After much resisting and arguing with God, I finally relented and went back to Jazzercise. He asked me to “love what He loves” which is His language for “Jana, take care of yourself.”
Selah…Are you loving what He loves?
So needless to say, I’m ba-a-a-ack, and man, He talks to me a lot while I huff and puff and sweat. Think physical and spiritual workout at the same time. While I shed fat and gain muscle, I shed lies and gain mental muscle too. The first two weeks were brutal but worth it.
I ran into “her”, got a new pair of shoes, and got a new inspiration. Whew, He was busy… I forgot He was so committed to my health (and your health).
“Her” — Killing Comparison
“Her” is the woman who has the “Oh-I-wish-I-looked-like-her” body. My first day back with my blobby, flabby self, she came in late and stood where? Yes, right in front of me.
So I spent the first song berating Myself for letting my body go, again. (How many times do I have to repeat the cycle of workout-neglect-workout-neglect. It doesn’t work. Ever) Then I spent the next song berating HER for being so perfect and proving that I must truly be a P.O.S since I can’t/don’t/won’t look like her.
But by the third song, I heard this faint, but familiar Voice of Love. “Eyes on the instructor.”
I shook my head to clear the fog. “What did you say?” I asked.
“Eyes on the instructor!”
‘Whoa, sorry Lord. Lost my mind there for a minute,” I said and looked back to the jazz instructor. Suddenly my attention and heart shifted.
“Do what they do, and you will be strong like them over time.”
I had to smile. ‘Same with You, right?’ I thought between gasps of air. ‘Keep my eyes on The Instructor.’
We do that as women. When we look at each other with eyes of comparison, we Lose our Minds. I am not supposed to be like you or you like me. I am supposed to be the best me possible in the strength of Christ. And the only way I can do that is to “keep my eyes on The Instructor.” The Holy One. Just like the Jazzercise instructor, Jesus starts right where we are and shows us how to firm up, tone up, get stronger, get balanced.
Whew. I realized that first day, I really AM out of shape.
New Shoes — Made to Move
My current workout shoes were tired and worn out and already I was whining. “Now I have to get shoes, and I don’t have any money, and this is a lot of work, and time, and now I need shoes…whaaaaaah.” (Oh, but the Lord is gracious with us.)
So one day after Jazz, I heard, “Go to Becky’s Shoes.” What followed was this crazy encounter with God because 1) Becky’s Shoes is now call Marti and Liz’s, 2) I didn’t have much money for shopping and 3) I was pretty sure I’d gone crazy. I mean, shoes? Really?
After trying on ten pairs of shoes, I picked an inexpensive pair and started to check out. But I prayed, “Lord, is this it? I mean, thank you for the shoes, but these don’t seem worth all the fuss. Am I missing something?”
Then I heard, “Go down the men’s aisle.”
“The men’s aisle?” I protested, “Why would there be women’s shoes on the men’s aisle? But okay…”
And yes, there was One Pair of women’s shoes, in my size, in my budget. But wait. There’s more.
Look at what the inside of the shoe said:
I had to stand there a moment in contained shock. This God who knows me better than I know myself, just silenced all my complaints and comparisons and quitting. Here was a smack down answer to my why and I felt so loved. My heart overflowed with gratitude and humility. Thank you Lord for caring so much.
A New Inspiration — Getting To Core
At the end of the two weeks, the Lord revealed the reason for such physical, emotional and spiritual rigor. I was to speak to 200 women at Mount Lebanon Baptist Church. Guess the topic? Beauty.
When you have that many women together and you start calling out the ways we hate ourselves, the ways we hurt ourselves, and how that causes us to hate and hurt others, tears are going to flow freely.
And the person who shed the most tears was the Speaker.
God let me “see” those women in the spirit and I couldn’t stop the tears falling from my eyes. God wants us to see what He sees when He looks at us. We are so much more that body parts. We are so much more than comparison. We are so much more than killing our bodies trying to live up to some false idea of beauty.
As I stood before them, I saw — Warriors. And yet, so many of them had no idea of who they really are. Long after the event was over, my heart was still burdened for those women to be free, finally. But not just that church, but all of God’s Church. God is calling his Warriors to motion, to awakened desire, to life.
A Unified Goal
I have been at Jazz ever since those intense two weeks. I am committed because He is so committed. But it is very, very different for me. Now I pray for “her” when I see her. I pray for all these women in motion that God will be their definition of “enough.” And I pray while I sweat, for His women to hear His voice of Love more and more. I tell you there is power when awakened women get in motion.
You can see it as this group of women workout together. There is such synergy in our joint efforts, such beauty as we move together in rhythmic motion. It is very much like a beautiful church. Each brings their best effort and we encourage and inspire each other to keep going. Regardless of where we started, we will become stronger, better, if we keep going.
So to you Warrior Woman, love what God loves. Get in motion. And see what He sees. You are beautiful indeed.