- capable of bending easily without breaking.
- able to be easily modified to respond to altered circumstances or conditions.
When it comes to our health, being flexible is a very good thing. According to the National Federation of Professional Trainers, “Flexibility is argued by some to be the most important component of a training program… Lack of flexibility is the root of many kinds of movement related accidents. When a muscle is tight, its ability to contract properly is compromised, leading to inefficient movements. Muscles that are tight are more likely to become injured and cause the opposing muscle to contract improperly…” Physical flexibility is increased through stretching. But have you thought about how this idea carries over into your personality?
When you’re on a time crunch at the gym, and Buff Betty or Ripped Ronny is hogging the machine you need, how do you react? Do you walk over and give them a speech on gym etiquette? Or, do you adapt and overcome this problem by modifying your workout? You may not have thought about this, but you can probably hit the same muscle group with free weights, resistance bands, calisthenics (body weight exercises) or cables. By switching, you may actually benefit your body by muscle confusion, hitting a slightly different angle, or involving your stabilizer muscles in the movement.
As Christians, I believe God calls us to be flexible: amenable to HIS plan; cooperative to someone else’s idea. When our circumstances change, or there seems to be a roadblock in our way, rather than complaining, yelling at the wall in front of us, or becoming rigid and stagnant, walk around the wall. God may be placing that roadblock there to safely guide you on a better path.
I also believe God calls us to be interruptible. You most likely start out each day with a plan, goals, and a schedule. Well, God has an agenda for your day, too. Are you willing to accommodate His plan? Perhaps, you had an entire “to-do” list this morning… but then you received a call from a friend who really needed your help. Perchance you’re in the middle of a project, when your spouse interrupts because they really need to pray, or your child needs to talk. If you feel God nudging you to respond, are you easily adaptable?
‘As Jesus walked beside the Sea of Galilee, he saw Simon and his brother Andrew casting a net into the lake, for they were fishermen. “Come, follow me,” Jesus said, “and I will send you out to fish for people.’ At once they left their nets and followed him.“ -Mark 1:16-18
As we see in this scripture, the disciples heard Jesus call and they did not hesitate. They didn’t ask questions, check their i-calendar to see if there was an hour available, or panic. They dropped what they were doing and followed Him.
I’m not suggesting that every time the phone rings you should drop what you’re doing. You would never get anything accomplished! What I am saying is simply: be open to what God wants to do. Perhaps you expected to own a home, make a certain salary, achieve a certain status at your job, have kids, be married, or be living somewhere else by this point in your life. You’ve done all you can do in the natural but nothing is panning out. Have you stopped to think that maybe that was your timetable, and not God’s? Can you surrender your plan and burden to Him and trust His will to be done? Sometimes when we stretch our faith muscles in this way, we actually benefit from a far greater plan than we ever asked or imagined! We stop trying to force our way. We drop our nets and follow Jesus.
I’m quite sure it was not in Joseph’s plan to be falsely accused by Potiphar’s wife and sent to prison. Yet by adapting well, Joseph was positioned for a promotion. Joseph had God’s favor and a positive attitude, despite waiting years to see his freedom… He was faithful in the waiting, and interpreted important prophetic dreams, which ultimately led to Pharaoh appointing Joseph over the land of Egypt! (See Genesis 39-41)
Like our muscles, if we are inflexible in personality, we become stressed, rigid, tight, and our ability to react properly is compromised. This leaves us susceptible to injury and inefficient movements. We leave ourselves open for the enemy to whisper lies about God’s goodness and faithfulness. We may even become spiritually blinded to the miracles God is trying to work in us, through us, and around us. So, stretch your faith, my friend! Listen to that still, small, voice of God and follow Him. Then… don’t look back. Press on toward the prize He has waiting for you on the other side.
“I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus.” –Philippians 3:14 NIV
We are learning to stretch, be Semper Gumby, and be interruptible right alongside you…
“I’m not saying that I have this all together, that I have it made. But I am well on my way, reaching out for Christ, who has so wondrously reached out for me. Friends, don’t get me wrong: By no means do I count myself an expert in all of this, but I’ve got my eye on the goal, where God is beckoning us onward—to Jesus. I’m off and running, and I’m not turning back.” -Philippians 3:12-14 The Message Bible
Here’s to your health!