In my early 20s I began exercising, walking at least 30 – 50 minutes each day. This pattern continued into my 30s and 40s. My walking path included several very long and steep hills, giving me a great cardio workout. In my late 40s I developed bursitis in both of my hips and was forced to decrease my walking and find other ways to get the exercise I needed. I began swimming at the local gym. For several years I have walked 2-3 days per week and swam laps 2-3 days per week, giving me a nice variety of exercise that satisfied my inner Richard Simmons!!
Then, along came January 22nd, 2016 ~~ the day that will live in infamy, at least as far as I am concerned. It was on that day as I was innocently walking through my office that sacro-iliac joint inflammation hit me like a wrecking ball. I wrote about it in THIS post, entitled I’ve Reached My Limit. Needless to say, SI Joint Inflammation has stopped me in my tracks and given me a new view of life.
My physical therapy is concentrating on strengthening my core, which includes doing planks. Sounds harmless enough, huh? Do not be fooled. These exercises are straight out of some evil dictator’s torture manual for prisoners! Core? What am I, an apple? What’s the big deal about my core? Glad you asked.
Our core consists of all the muscles in the abdominal area of our bodies. If you were a tree, your core would be the trunk which allows you to rise to the sky and stand majestically for the world to see. Unless you and I are diligent about doing exercises that keep our cores strong, as we age, those muscles get flabby. Even if you are thin…even if you walk and swim for exercise…those muscles can get flabby unless you are doing focused exercise to keep them strong. When those core muscles weaken, the bone structures that form our trunk/core have the opportunity to shift, causing friction and inflammation. Hence, my very painful and debilitating SI Joint Inflammation.
I am doing planks and other core-strengthening exercises to promote healing and prevent future injury. All of this planking got me to thinking about a spiritual application.
Our spiritual core is our heart. Proverbs 4:23 tells us that we should guard our heart above all else because out of it flow all the issues of life. The things we allow into and out of our heart effect every area of our life.
When we allow profanity to come out of our mouths, it is really coming from the heart.
When we take in pornography through our eyes, it sears the heart and hardens it to the dangers that lurk.
When we listen to music that has ungodly messages, our heart is turned toward those ungodly things.
When we allow money, drugs, status, or any other thing or person to take the place of Jesus in our life, our heart is turned away from Him and we fall into idolatry.
These are only a few examples of what can happen when we allow our spiritual core to grow flabby. There are two exercises that our Heavenly Therapist prescribes for a flabby spiritual core ~ Prayer and Scripture. Both of these take time, persistence, and work, yet the results are nothing short of amazing. The heart will be strengthened and our lives, words, and choices will reflect the heart of Jesus.
Are you ready to strengthen your core? Physically and spiritually?
Do you desire to be strong and healthy? Physically and spiritually?
Are you willing to do the work it takes to achieve good core health? Physically and spiritually?
If you are serious about having good core strength, physically and spiritually, I’ll lend you my motto. “Let’s get ‘er done!”