Greetings to all the Kingdom Thinking family. Debbie and I are excited to have another power packed guest post this week from our good friend, Julieann Hartman. You can read more about Julieann in her bio at the end of this post. So put on your seat belt and get ready!
“Or do you not know that your body is the temple of the Holy Spirit who is in you, whom you have from God, and you are not your own”? (1 Cor 6:19 NKJ).
How do you treat your body? How would you present and keep your house if you knew that a King or Queen was coming to stay in your house? Heck, when I have a couple of friends over, I clean my house like crazy! I can’t imagine what it would be like if there was a Royal Priesthood coming to stay at my house and I wasn’t equipped to accommodate them. What about the Holy Spirit that lives on the inside of you? Wouldn’t you want to present your body a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable to God which is your reasonable service? (Romans 12:1) Now please don’t get me wrong, this is not to condemn you at all about how you treat your body! We already know that “there is no condemnation to those who are in Christ Jesus, who do not walk according to the flesh but according to the Spirit”. (Romans 8:1)
What about exercise? I know there are a lot of people that don’t like to workout. Do you like to do it? Is it the first thing on your “to do” list or is it such a low priority that you just keep putting it off for days and then years? We do need to be good stewards over our bodies. How do we do that? How do we steward? The definition of “stewardship” is the responsible overseeing and protection of something considered worth caring for and preserving. (Dictionary.com) Do you care about yourself enough to want to preserve yourself for as many years as you feel you want to live on this earth? For an everyday person who is not an athlete, exercising 3 to 4 times a week – 30 to 40 minutes a day is perfect. You have only one body. You can lift, tuck, tan and enhance but you will not be able to replace it. Think about your future because you will be in this body for the rest of your life! Whatever you sow now is what you will reap later. This can be good and bad. Exercise has SO many positive effects. It makes you alert. It makes your heart healthy. Makes your motor skills more precise. It gets your blood flowing, it makes you more energized, it makes your brain process quicker. There is nothing wrong with exercising. The only wrong thing about exercise would be if you have a wrong attitude about it. When I was a trainer I heard over and over again, “Oh, I don’t like gyms, they’re meat markets!” or “I don’t want to mess up my hair!” or “I’m too embarrassed about my body!” or “I just don’t have the time!” Nowadays, there are NO excuses. There is something for everyone. You can download an app and workout in the comfort of your own home and at any time! You can join a gym, you can take a class, you can walk, hike, cycle, and the list goes on and on. There is never a lack in finding something that will benefit your physical body and overall health. My 78-year-old mother works out 3 times a week in a program called “Silver Sneakers”. She loves it. It’s a good workout. She can do it standing up or sitting down. It’s a time of fellowship, ministry and just plain fun! Did you know that the human body is the only machine on earth that gets better and stronger the more you use it? Every other machine made by man wears out with use! But our bodies are made by God!
Now over-exercising is a whole other thing. It can make you feel exhausted all the time and everything you do seems like it’s impossible because you are so tired and your body just won’t work at its full capacity. It creates brain fog, complete exhaustion, short tempers and body soreness!! Please take the time to take care of your body – in all ways. Working out is supposed to help in your body’s overall health, not take away your energy. I was guilty of that for many years. The reason I over-exercised was so I could be so exhausted by the end of the day that fear, anxiety or any other negative impulse or thoughts would be overruled by my complete 100% exhaustion. One thing I see so much of is posting on social media in the form of “look what I’m doing” selfies or “look at my cute workout outfit”. Do you exercise for the Instagram photo or Facebook? Or how about Snapchat? That’s all fine but that kind of reason will definitely fade away in time. Please do it for the goals and dreams ahead of you that God has put in your heart to do. It will all be worth it someday when you see the fruit of all your labor for building the Kingdom. I praise God that I was delivered from that mindset. You see how something that is meant for good can be damaging to someone who leans on their own flesh to break bad habits or bondage? We just don’t have that kind of power on the inside of us when we are not in Christ.
Sleep deprivation can be an enemy to our physical bodies. We have to sleep! Especially women!! I don’t know about men because I’ve never been one but I can guarantee that they need sleep as well. We have to rest our muscles, organs, and minds!! As women, we have hormones and when we don’t sleep our hormones get all out of whack!! For me, it all started when I had my first daughter. I was up all hours of the night, had my second daughter and was up all hours of the night even more! And then when they started to go to school, drive, have relationships…. need I say more!! We have to be “hooked up to the vine” constantly to keep our minds from going places that they shouldn’t go in our emotions. (John 15:1) I know that when I don’t get enough sleep everything I do the following day is with so much more effort. Be honest about how much sleep you really need and then get it. There’s no shame in needing 8 to 10 hours of sleep. That might be what your body requires. I know how easy it is to stay up and look at all your social media, to look at who’s doing what. It’s so tempting but you will be the only one who suffers the next day when you’re so tired. Actually, it will not only be you who suffers – it will also be everyone around you, too!
As I close, I really just want all who read this to know that you have dominion and authority over your life. It is empowering to know that you can be successful by the choices you make and by some of the sacrifices you make: one being exercise! You’re never too old to exercise. There is always something you can do. Whether you sit in a chair and wiggle your toes or you compete in the Iron Man Triathlon. It is up to you.
You are not just a conqueror, you are more than a conqueror! (Romans 8:37)
Julieann Hartman is a native from Los Angeles. She’s been married for 25 years to an incredibly loving & talented Executive Producer of Television Animation and has 2 adult daughters who love the Lord with all their hearts! She’s had many careers in her life up to this point. She’s been an Actress, Executive Secretary, Material Supervisor on the game show Jeopardy!, Tae Bo instructor and Personal Assistant. She and her husband, Butch, are the Co-Founders of their Non-Profit Foundation “Hartman House” established in 2005.
No matter how exciting these careers might seem, NOTHING takes the place or even comes close to being a wife, a mother and an Ambassador for Jesus Christ!