As a certified personal trainer to women for over two decades, I can confidently say that the results you desire are directly affected by the amount of energy and dedication you invest in your training program.
I have watched while women in gyms all across Southern California set out to achieve the “perfect body” in time for Christmas or New Years ~~ sweating for hours at a time ~~ only to be sorely disappointed at the less than desirable results. Why? The body was not designed to respond favorably over the course of only a few weeks, no matter how many hours you torture it.
All too often, women have come to me and expressed their deep desire to “look good” for a special occasion ~~ and they’re willing to spend hard earned money for it. But when asked how much time they’re willing to invest ~~ or even how much time before the special event ~~ I am speechless at the sound of, “thirty days.” I’ve even been asked, “How can I get rid of this (grabbing the beloved muffin top) in two weeks ~~ I’m going on a cruise!”
We live in a time and place where things are instantly attained or acquired. American Idol® guarantees that you can be an overnight success; just make a few appearances and you’ll be discovered by a reputable talent scout and offered a contract. Cosmetic surgery offers its patients the opportunity to regain youth and beauty, turning back the hands of time and promising a renewed sense of confidence and vitality; just undergo a few invasive procedures. Online universities offer academic degrees in a compressed timeframe; you can even participate in the comfort of your pajamas and never have to interact with other students.
Sadly enough, there are times we translate this instantaneous expectation into our spiritual lives. We want things ~~ wisdom, knowledge, and understanding ~~ now ~~ but we seldom open up our Bibles to read it. How do we expect to mature spiritually in an instant?
If your first guess is, “It won’t happen,” you’re spot on, Girlfriend!
Spiritual maturity can only occur over time. One day at a time. God’s beautiful design for His Children allow for us to develop carefully over time. Part of me tends to think that if we could experience an instantaneous transformation of character and spirit, we would explode! Even in the Divine artistry of Creation God took six days ~~ He took His time ~~ to artfully craft the heavens and the earth.
Colossians 1:10b All the while, you will grow as you learn to know God better and better.
Notice how the apostle Paul writes: “grow as you learn to know God.” And then he goes on to say: “better.” And then completes his thought with: “and better.” Almost as if Paul were telling us there’s a progression to this thing called Christian maturity.
1 Chronicles 16:11 Search for the Lord and for his strength; continually seek him.
Matthew 6:33 Seek the Kingdom of God above all else, and live righteously, and he will give you everything you need.
So then how do we seek the Lord?
Get into His Word, Girlfriend.
That same enthusiastic energy ~~ that same zeal ~~ that we have for physical transformation ~~ needs to also be transferred into pursuing God and developing an intimate relationship with Him. Just as we would spend time with someone we desire to get to know, the same is true for Our God. If we are desiring to know Him better and better, then we must actively open up the written Word to find out what He is like, what His Will is for our lives, and ultimately we will experience how much He loves us.
This is what will transform us ~~ His life-breathing Word.
I wrestled with establishing regular meeting times with God ~~ for years (that’s embarrassing to admit)! Then one day I made the conscious decision: Set aside the first activity of every day (like tithing my time) and meet up with God through His Word. So I chose to “have breakfast with God.” I opened up my Bible to a daily reading (I started with the New Testament for a yearly reading) and brought pen and paper (just in case God gave me extra homework). I jot down anything that strikes my attention in that moment. And then I ponder over it throughout my day ~~ I “ruminate” over it (thoroughly chewing and digesting) ~~ because I know that He drew my attention for a reason ~~ a learning opporunity.
More often than not, that brief meeting time with God proved to be exactly what I needed to deal with a situation or person later that day.
I’ve not missed a day since I started. And I don’t feel as though I’m missing out on anything in its place. This has become my sacred meeting time with God. And the blessings have surpassed my expectations!
Pray for God to meet you first thing every morning ~~ Pray that He will strengthen your desire to follow through ~~ Pray that your heart and mind will be receptive to His teachings ~~ and expect great things from your Great God. He will honor your devotion to Him and grant you the desires of your heart ~~ the desire to know Him better and better. Cultivate and protect this transformational meeting time.
And get ready for God to blow your mind with unbelievable blessings!
I love you to Heaven and Back, Girlfriend ~~