Love the Lord with all your STRENGTH

“Love the Lord your God will all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength and with all your mind {…} Jesus replied, ‘Do this and you will live’ “ Luke 10:27-28

At the Panathenaic Stadium in Athens, Greece.

At the Panathenaic Stadium in Athens, Greece.

Max it out, Taylor. Add on five more pounds. Push it harder, girl! Your body is a machine, keep going.

There was a time of my life where I defined myself by the physical. In my eyes, my worth was determined by how much I could carry, how fast I could run, how hard I could push myself to my athletic limits.

Maybe I was trying to live up to the physical standards my dad set as a world-champion swimmer, or maybe I wanted to prove to the world that I could keep walking with weight added upon my shoulders – that it wouldn’t bother me, but rather, spur me on to ask for even more.

But what kind of value do I gain when I let my character be illustrated by what I can do in a weight room, on a track or in a 5K regatta? If it’s just about being the strongest, then I truly gain nothing.

I’ve learned that my life is about dedicating my physical powers to the Lord. If my actions are not about doing His work, then I’m not living my life for Him. If I think that what I can overcome is all determined by my own strength, I am disillusioned.

And for quite some time, I was convinced that it was myself alone who was getting through all of life’s hardships.

But now I understand that through our own powers, we cannot make it. It’s only when we receive our strength from the Lord that we can walk through the storm, eyes looking up to Him, weathering the world but knowing in faith that He will give us every ounce of energy to get through it.

Do you not know? Have you not heard? The Lord is the everlasting God, the Creator of the ends of the earth. He will not grow tired or weary, and his understanding no one can fathom. He gives strength to the weary and increases the power of the weak. Even youths grow tired and weary, and young men stumble and fall; but those who hope in the Lord will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint.” Isaiah 40:28-31

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