I am so excited to begin this mini-series on Fitness, Faith, and Femininity! I write this with the hope of encouraging other Christian women to love their bodies and use them. Let me remind everyone that this is a Christian blog. If you can’t be nice, don’t post on this page. Any lewd, discriminatory, or hateful comments will be removed at my discretion. That being said; let us get started.
We are going to tackle Lynn’s question first. She wrote, “Doesn’t this go against being sweet and meek like the Bible says?”
Lynn, great question! I bet I can guess where this question came from in the Bible. How many Bible studies have you been to where they quoted (at least once!) 1 Peter 3:3-4? For those of you who may not have it memorized 1 Peter 3:3-4 says, “Your beauty should not come from outward adornment, such as braided hair and the wearing of gold jewelry and fine clothes. Instead it should be that of your inner self, the unfading beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit, which is of great worth in God’s sight.”
I have wrestled with this verse as long as I have been a Christian. I am 5’5 (the shortest of all of siblings even though I am the oldest!) and my very tall grandmother used to say that what I lack in height I make up for with personality. When asked in our marriage class recently what my husband liked most about my personality he said, “She is feisty”. I don’t know that anyone has EVER described me as “gentle and quiet”. Does that mean that I am any less godly than a shy woman who seems gentle and quiet?
The answer is no.
My favorite woman in the Bible is Deborah. If you check out the book of Judges in the Old Testament you can read her full story, but let me give you a brief synopsis.
This woman was awesome. Deborah is a prophetess, a judge, and a wife. She went to war with the Israelite army. In His word, God calls her “a mother to Israel” (5:7) and she sang her own song to the Lord. Somehow I don’t see this woman sitting quietly on the sidelines. She listened to God’s calling for her life and she went for it. Deborah used her mind and her physical abilities to serve the Lord.
I want to be like that.
I believe that God wants us to be prepared to do His will. By this I mean, if God calls me to go to serve people in the mountains in South America, will I be ready to do it? If my friend from church says she needs help packing up her house for their PCS, do I have what it takes? God has given me this incredible gift: my body! I should use it for His glorification. This does not mean that I don’t have a gentle and quiet spirit. My heart is full, my ministry is growing, and I am in the word daily. I have friends and mentors keeping me accountable for memorizing my Bible verses, and keeping up with my Bible studies.
So no, I don’t think training physically means that I am not having a “gentle and quiet spirit”.
I think I can have a gentle and quiet spirit and still go into my garage and deadlift 170lbs.
I just have to put my Bible down to pick my barbell up.