This message is from the sermon that I preached in our church on January 17th, 2016. It will be published in sections. Continued from How to Survive the Spin Cycle: Use Resistance Right (Part 1) NOTE: If you missed Part 1, you might want to watch the short Spin Demo Video #1 that I refer to throughout the message! Spin Demo Video #1
2. Use resistance right by becoming committed
The next element of Spin Class I demonstrated in the video was the shoes. When you clip in, you become one with the bike. These shoes represent commitment – commitment to using resistance to its fullest capacity and developing endurance and maturity through the process.
The disciples showed that kind of commitment when Jesus made some statements that sounded like heresy to the religious Jews and that caused most of the people following him to leave. He turned to the 12 and said, “Do you want to leave too?” to which they replied, “Where would we go? You alone have the words of life.” They were clipped in. Even though they might have felt like, “Geez, we didn’t sign up for this. This is way harder than we thought it would be”, they knew too much to turn back. They were clipped in and come what may, no matter how much resistance the road ahead held, they were staying on the bike.
That commitment to the process demonstrated by the disciples reminds me of when I first started taking spin classes at my gym. I was going on Thursday nights and became friends with lovely a lady named Catherine who is probably about ten years my senior. Every night after class she and I would walk together out to our cars. One night, I turned to Catherine and told her that I thought that I needed to go see a cardiologist. She looked concerned and asked me why. I proceeded to tell her that in class over the month that I had been attending I always felt dizzy, my heart was pounding out of my chest, and I felt as though someone had stuck a bicycle pump in my ear and was blowing my face off! I was serious – but she just laughed! She patted me on the shoulder and told me that I wasn’t dying and I probably didn’t have a heart condition. She said, “You’re out of shape. You went from not exercising at all to taking an intense cardio class and your heart is probably just freaking out a little. The thing that worked for me,” she said, “was taking two classes a week and not just one. It helped me get over the hump where I thought I was going to die every class.”
So I did what Catherine recommended and started going on Saturday mornings as well as Thursday nights and she was right! Within 2 weeks, I was over the hump of feeling like I was going to die! And what I think is very interesting about this story is that it was MORE exposure to resistance, and not less, that got me over the hump!
Let perseverance finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything
That reminds me of James 1:4 – “Let perseverance finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything.” It’s not until we really clip into the process of allowing resistance to make us stronger that we’re going to see change. If every time resistance comes our way, we resort back to the old methods of self-protecting and providing false comfort to ourselves – be it through food, alcohol, outbursts or anger, or being the victim – we will never mature. We will never experience the ruler-ship and dominion that God created us to experience as his children.
We were created to rule over the things that want to rule over us. Our commitment to clip in and stay in the process when it’s excruciating is going to be the measure of how much dominion we walk in.
3. Use Resistance Right by Obeying Your Thirst
The 3rd and 4th elements of spin go together: Water bottle & towel. These 2 items go hand in hand because it’s going to be Water in – Sweat out. In a spin class it is crucial to hydrate. I go through over 40 ounces of water during a class. I think it’s interesting though, that while I put purified water in my body, when it comes back out as sweat it’s gross! I really need my towel!
In our lives, when we’re going through an excruciating time we have to put the pure water of the Word inside to keep our souls hydrated. But have you noticed that under pressure when faced with resistance, we put in the Word, yet all of a sudden out comes some really gross stuff? I can’t speak for you, but so many times, tough circumstances bring out the worst in me. How can this be? How can I be pounding down Scripture and yet have all of this crud start to surface? When under pressure, I start to see impatience, jealousy, insecurity, fear, short temper, selfishness rear their ugly heads.
Well think about how our body functions – we take in pure water which our bodies use to pull toxins from deep within us and push them to the surface. Sweat, while gross and sometimes rank, is our body’s purification system. We need pure water in to get the toxins out. The pure water of the Word isn’t going to mask our weaknesses and sins. Its job isn’t to cover it up like dousing ourselves in Axe body spray. It’s going to pull those toxic attitudes and mindsets to the surface so that we can get them up and out and wipe them off with the towel of repentance.
The other day in spin class, our instructor said something that caught my attention. She was encouraging us all to periodically wipe the sweat off our bodies during class. She pointed out the if the sweat stays on our skin, then oxygen can’t get in which is the cooling part of the perspiration process. The result of leaving the sweat on our bodies is that we overheat like wrapping ourselves in Saran Wrap!
I thought how much that’s like us when the crud starts to surface in our souls. We know that if we go into the presence of the Lord, He has promised to wipe away all guilt and shame and to cast our sins as far as the east is from the west. But we’re so ashamed of the crud that we stay away and try to clean ourselves up before we approach the Lord. And all that does is cause us to spiritually overheat! Have you ever tried that? There’s nothing more miserable that having junk surface in your heart and not dealing with it the right way, right away. Sitting with the crud on your soul is nothing short of suffocating!
So let’s make sure that the next time we start to get tricked into thinking that we can wipe away our own toxic mindsets and attitudes, that we go back to the Truth of 1 John 1:9 that says, “If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness.”
To be continued…