Tuesday, May 1, 2012

Lunchtime walkabout prayabout

As part of my weight loss and dieting efforts, I've added somewhat regular exercise to the mix. I'm trying to walk at least three times a week on my lunch break, and my current course clocks in around 2.25 miles.

Seeing as how Cincinnati is in the Ohio River valley, I get some wonderful hill work too, whether I want it or not. In fact, my route takes me straight down to the river, across one of the bridges to the Kentucky shore, whereupon I immediately turn around and retrace my path. It's easy to remember, convenient, and about a perfect distance for a quick 30 minute workout.

Late last week, a snippet of verse came to mind as I was in a quiet time. All I could remember was "fervent prayer of a righteous man". Looking it up, I found James 5:16:
Therefore, confess your sins to one another and pray for one another, that you may be healed. The prayer of a righteous person has great power as it is working.
 I realized I wasn't doing anything on these walks other than listening to my music and zoning out. So this week, I decided to change it up. I still put in my ear buds, but now I turn the music down low. It's just loud enough to cloak most of the sounds around me, but not loud enough that I can't hear myself think, or in this case, pray.

So now my walks are more than just a physical exercise. I'm trying to make them a spiritual exercise as well. 1 Thessalonians 5:17 tells us to "pray without ceasing."

What do you do when  you're taking a break, or vegging out, or engaged in some mind numbing drudgery? Do you crank up the music? Perhaps you turn on the TV to catch the latest news. Maybe, like me, you fire up your web browser and catch the latest blog posts or sports scores.

What if, instead, rejoiced always, prayed without ceasing and gave thanks in all circumstances instead? Imagine what could happen.

This Thursday is the National Day of Prayer, but we shouldn't need a specific call to action to do that which we are already called to do.

So, what will you be doing do your downtimes? I know what I'm going to try and do instead.

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