“…make every effort to respond to God’s promises. Supplement your faith with a generous provision of moral excellence, and moral excellence with knowledge, and knowledge with self-control, and self-control with patient endurance, and patient endurance with Godliness, and Godliness with brotherly affection, and brotherly affection with love for everyone.”
2 Peter 1:5b-7
Spiritual exercise is just as, if not more important than physical exercise. Just as we need to exercise our physical body to keep fit, so it is the same spiritually. We cannot afford to get spiritually lazy or obese because we are not putting in the time to grow in God. Unlike physical exercise the benefits are Christ-like living, spiritual growth and closeness to Jesus. It is like any relationship; you need to make an effort otherwise the relationship will grow distant and stagnant. Yet again, unlike physical exercise, spiritual discipline is not burdensome, it is not hard work and it is not tiring. Yes it requires effort to make time to spend with your Creator, but the more time spent with Jesus, the more refreshed, invigorated and more prepared we are for life. Moreover, it is Jesus’ grace that allows us to have a relationship with Him in the first place.
By spending more time with God, in both conversation (that includes letting Him talk to us too) and through His word, the characteristics that Peter mentions in today’s verse will naturally become apparent in our lives as evidence of daily spiritual discipline and exercise, all to bring glory to the Father. Moreover, spending time with God and exercising spiritually, is our way to respond to God, which leads to Christ-like living. Just like a tree or a plant, the more you water it, care for it, and nurture it, the more it will grow into a beautiful tree/plant bearing good fruit. It you neglect it, it will wither away and die. Let us pursue Jesus with an insatiable thirst. Let us discipline our spiritual lives by spending time with our Lord and Saviour. Spending time with Jesus is time well spent.