What do an elliptical machine, an I-Phone App, and my relationship with Jesus have in common? They all require commitment, discipline, and determination. But more on that in a minute.

Tuesday I cancelled my gym membership. Not because I’ve given up exercising but because on Monday my husband bought an elliptical trainer. Since we already had a treadmill, a small home gym, and some free weights, we now have everything we need at home to stay in good physical shape.

Several people told me they wouldn’t have the discipline to exercise at home. They feel they need the discipline of going to a gym to stick to it. Then that’s what they need to do – whatever keeps them motivated. Since I’ve exercised practically my entire life and I’ve stayed committed to it before without the resource of a gym, I know I’ll continue.

Back in the fall I also discovered an awesome little tool that has helped keep my diet on track. Several of my friends introduced me to the “Lose-it!” I-Phone application. It keeps up with calories, exercise, and weight. This kind of accountability usually works well for me – until of course I have a rebellious day or weekend and eat my way through a half-gallon of Blue Bell’s cookies and cream.

Just yesterday I had lunch with three friends who also use the Lose-it app. After our healthy, low-cal meal, we all had out our phones checking our daily logs to see if we could split one of the deli’s large oatmeal-raisin cookies for dessert. Two of us did, so we shared the treat!

Now I have a confession to make. Often I am more disciplined in my physical health than I am with my spiritual health. Yet, in Scripture the Apostle Paul makes it clear we must discipline and train ourselves to be godly. Spiritual health and growth does not happen by accident. Yes, only the Holy Spirit can grow us and cause spiritual transformation. But He demands our obedient cooperation.

Train yourselves to be godly. 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 4:7-8

Committing to the spiritual disciplines such as Bible reading, prayer, Scripture memory, and obedience is essential for us to be conformed to the image of Christ. Here is a great resource to help you get started or get back on track: “Spiritual Disciplines for the Christian Life” by Donald S. Whitney.

There are also many discipleship tools on this website. Check them out here.

So, how are you doing in your discipline to spiritual growth? What helps you stay motivated? What kind of things get you off track?

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