“No matter how you feel, get up, dress up, and show up. Never give up.” -found at local gyms everywhere

I’ve been a church-going girl all of my life, literally since I was born.  Being a Christian has been one of the primary ways I identify myself, and a big part of that is attending church.  My weakest moments only meant that I would attend more – every time the doors were open, if I could.

Entering my mid-thirties, however, I began to entertain for the first time the idea that maybe I’d just rather stay home.  Millions of twenty-somethings are doing it; that would make me a trend-setter, right?  I was tired, disappointed, busy, and just burnt out.  And, I hate to admit this, but the age-old excuse was right: It actually is full of hypocrites.

Yet something compelled me to stick with it and it wasn’t until Sunday School yesterday that I found the words for why: Going to church is just like going to the gym.

The people I have met at the gym are ALL hypocrites.  For one thing, their motives are not pure.  They do not want to be there, or if they do, it’s to feed their egos or some other self-serving need.  Maybe they’ve come to socialize, to network, to connect with that cute gym bunny who always comes in at 7 a.m.  Maybe they are compulsive exercisers who fear going a day without it.  Maybe they can’t do it on their own and need the motivating presence and activity of others.

Not only that, but however they look inside the gym, they do not leave those doors and live a perfect life of health in the rest of the world.  There is no one who never ever makes a bad health choice, be it eating something off-diet or neglecting their rest or balancing their time management perfectly.  Some of us come closer than others, but no one can claim a life of perfect health and choices one hundred percent of the time.

Yet no one would ever condone these observations as a valid reason not to go to the gym.

This holds true for most of the reasons I use and/or hear to rationalize dropping out:
-I don’t fit in / don’t agree / don’t like some of the people there.
-They only want me for my money.
-I don’t have time.
-That’s my only day to sleep in.
-I don’t like the way it’s organized.
-It’s boring.
-I had a bad experience.
-I don’t need to.  I can make it on my own.

Some of these may be valid reasons for eschewing one particular site or group, but not for giving up entirely.  It’s a discipline.  It’s supposed to be hard.

The hard parts are what make me better.


7 thoughts on “cross/fit

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  1. Hi Lucinda – another great post. I grew up in a rather strict denomination and consequently never identified with church (with a big or little c) and got out as soon as I could. This makes it sound like a jail-break! But I digress…I spent all of my adolescent years and almost all of my adult life away from church and church-goers. I wasn’t so much passing judgment as I was just saying “thanks, but no thanks, this just isn’t for me.” With age, and especially children, I found myself opening to the idea of church, or God, or at least something more than myself, mainly through Shannon’s family, who come from a long line of east Texas Methodists. After going to LFUMC with my late mother-in-law, who, by the way, was a professional biologist that leapt at every opportunity to explain natural selection to anyone who would listen, I realized that church was not *only*something you believe in, but rather something you did. Among many things, church is about people, it’s about sharing time and space with others, about working together to set up a food bank for the hungry or setting up a potluck supper just to socialize. It is, as you say, a discipline, and one that provides a measure of regularity, consistency, and certainty in a world full of irregularity, inconsistency, and uncertainty. Phil


  2. So right you are. It’s easy to get out of the habit of going to church, especially with some of the politics going on in the denominations these days. I’ve done it myself many times. But you’re right about it being a discipline. Christianity is not just about beliefs, it’s also a set of practices.

    BTW, I found your blog through your comment on Adrienne’s post on Facebook. Have a nice evening!


  3. You are so awesome Lucinda!!! Now that I have this fb for my church family I can actually see what everyone is up to


  4. Well said. I needed to hear that. And by the way, you were a church-going girl *before* you were born – just so you know. You’ve had church family all your life who were just about as important as your blood family (sometimes more so, actually), and that’s the most concrete thing for me about going to church. Yes, I want and need to worship God and church is the organized way to do that, BUT my church family keeps me honest and makes the effort less onerous. Thank God for the commandment to gather ourselves together – I don’t know if I’d have made it this far otherwise!

    On Mon, Jul 29, 2013 at 12:41 PM, Write Naked


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