Suppose an out of shape and overweight man approached a personal trainer and said, “I want to get in shape.” He showed the trainer a picture of what he wanted his body to look like–washboard abs, steel pecks, and biceps like giant hogs wrestling in sausage casings.
Would the personal trainer tell him, “Tomorrow I want you to run seven miles and work out with weights for an hour?” Of course not! He would provide him with a light work-out. Over time the exercise routine would expand. If he faithfully followed the regimen his body would begin to resemble the picture. Similarly, if you want to look like Jesus, you must work-out. You must discipline yourself. If you want to grow spiritually, commit to those daily spiritual disciplines you know you can keep.
Psychologists have learned that after someone has done something for 21 consecutive days it’s a habit. Once you’ve developed a habit you can expand on it.
As Mighty Men we’ve committed to daily:
- Spend 3-5 minutes in the Word.
- Spend 3-5 minutes in prayer.
- Tell our families we love them. Of if you’re single, express love and appreciation to those close to you.
- Maintain sexual purity.
I like to remind men that a small change in their behavior will radically transform their life. Suppose a plane departs from Los Angeles heading east. If the pilot makes a 1% change in the trajectory of the plane it will be in a very different place three hours later. Similarly, a small change in the trajectory of your life will put you in a better place in one year.
That’s why it’s so crucial for you start with spiritual disciplines you know you can keep. As you meet with God each day, you will experience his presence and power in a fresh way. As the psalmist said, you will, “Taste and see that the LORD is good” (Psalm 34:8). As you experience the goodness of God you will desire to spend more time with him. You will crave his word and celebrate the way he uses it to change your life.
I know how easy it would be to read these words and just delete them or move on with the rest of your day. But don’t do that. Pause a few minutes and examine your life. How are you doing with the daily disciplines? Are you growing closer to the Lord and your family each day? If not, make that 1% change in the trajectory of your life right now. In three months you’ll be glad you did. If you’re on course, keep it up.
But take this a step further. Ask a friend to make the same commitments and hold each other accountable. Remember, accountability isn’t someone policing your life. Instead, it’s giving a friend permission to ask you the questions you need someone to ask you so you can be the man God wants you to be. If a friend agrees, urge him to join theMillion Mighty Men movement with the realization that revival will come, one man one day at a time. To sign up, click here.
By the way . . . for the last year 20 months I’ve been reading through the Gospels once a month. It’s deepened my relationship with Christ and is transforming my life. You might give it a try for a few months.