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In Training

For physical training is of some value, but godliness has value for all things, holding promise for both the present life and the life to come.

1 Timothy 4:8
In Training Book Cover

Are you one of those people who really enjoys working out, or is it something you have to motivate yourself to go do? No matter which one you are, we can all agree there’s a huge payoff when a workout is done. Your body is tired, sure, but the endorphins have kicked in and you feel healthier and stronger.

In the same way we have to train our bodies, we also have to train our minds and hearts to focus on the things of God. “Train yourself for godliness,” as 1 Timothy 4:7 tells us. Paul uses his letters to Timothy to encourage him in his faith and remind him of his role as a carrier of the gospel. In verse 8 he says: “While bodily training is of some value, godliness is of value in every way, as it holds promise for the present life and also for the life to come.” The time we spend focusing our hearts and minds on God will not only affect us, but it will affect those around us. It’s doesn’t just matter for today; it matters for eternity.

it's a process

Let’s think about other big changes we see in life. You don’t go from point A to B easily when you work on any transformation—training for a marathon, growing as a couple in a marriage, or raising a child to understand the rules of your home (or even potty train!). It all takes time, but it’s possible. Sanctification is a process. Don’t get discouraged. Get disciplined.

Later in this study, we are going to talk about some practical ways to train yourself in godliness, but before we get there, consider what’s keeping you from growing. Is your schedule too overwhelming, so you don’t spend time with God? Is your mind so full of other things that you forget to talk to God? Is your Bible the last book in your reading pile? While all these things don’t need to become just another line item on your to-do list, addressing them can help you find real ways to connect with the God who is waiting for you. He’s way more concerned with your heart and character than your checklist, so don’t make it about achieving something. He just wants time with you. In fact, your time with him, growing in him, will be more effective than any goal on earth you may succeed at.

Not many people like the word discipline, but we’ve got to find some. In a world of constant notifications and on-the-spot gratification, are we willing to let the Holy Spirit do the work of changing our hearts? No matter the timeline, the result is always Jesus. In the end, you always get Jesus. And every minute with him is good for your soul. It’s what you were created for.


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The Power to Change

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Daily Question

What often keeps you from time with God? And how can you try to overcome that?

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Comments (10)

I waste my days away with unimportant tasks, hobbies, internet, TV shows. All of this pales in comparison to the value I get when I spend time with God. While I do not have any real commitments that keep me from my daily time with God I lack the discipline to actually do it. With the help of this site and other resources, I am working on cultivating new daily habits, the most important of which is spending time with God. .

Full days, so much to do, and sometimes even entertainment. But in the back of my mind I know I need to a break, I know I need to go in my room and shut my door and give time to my Heavenly Father. Nothing should be more important then him. I can try to overcome it by making it a date with my father, and doing it same time during day or night. That way it’s always set aside just for him, and nothing will get in the way of it, but it’s scheduled time.

The to do list, as you said. I often give “it” more control then I give Him.
Acknowledging Christ as lord and making His agenda and purposes the priority will often rearrange my to do list and keep it in its proper place.

There are so many things…being too busy; work starts VERY early in the morning; exhausted; social media distraction; television distraction; inability to focus when I sit down to pray…SO many things. I have begun the process of removing many of these distractions this summer (I’m a teacher). I have removed problematic social media, and have committed to a summer of no passive television watching. (If we decide as a family to have a movie night or watch something intentional, then I will do that, but no mindless surfing.) I am trying to regain my focus that has long been splintered by SO MUCH world noise. I’m determined to reign it in and reclaim a sense of peace. That also includes doing this Bible study and praying and JOURNALING!

I’m wired as task oriented- everything is a to-do to check off my list- and my list is overwhelmingly full at all times and although I have always spent time with God daily and in the Word- I have a hard time not being pulled by all my to-dos, when God is gently calling me to “spend more time on something in the spiritual catagory”… I lay before him, my tendencies – and ask Him to help me break free what what I feel drives me constantly that keeps me ever sooo busy…..

I feel overwhelmed often and just sit and waste time. I need to spend time with Jesus everyday to combat this.

Scheduling. Lately I have enjoyed so much being able to just get back to finding piece in scripture and piece by feeling my soul with positive thoughts and learning to train my mind to ears the old negative ways and find a piece with the father.

I set the goal (in January2022) to always have QUALITY time with God everyday at the same time. I couldn’t do it in the morning because the coffee made my mind wander and I couldn’t do it in the evening because I would get too tired. So I finally settled on 12 noon. I would actually forget, so I set an alarm. I tried and would go for a few days then stop. This went on all year but with fewer and fewer lapses as time went by. Now in February 2023 I am happy to say its as automatic as brushing my teeth. The lesson here is: it took a whole year to set that habit. It was a slow process, but I didn’t give up.

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