I went almost a month without going to the gym.  I blame it on busyness….or maybe just laziness.  But, now that I have started going back, I find that I am pushing myself more.  I’m not sure why.  Maybe I’m working out some agression…..I don’t know.

Yesterday in my “workout” I did pectoral butterflies (impressive….I know…).  Other than the fact that it hurts to lift my arms today (There is a sign in my brother’s gym that says, “If you can’t tie your shoes, you’re doing it right.”  So I guess that means I did something right.), it made me start thinking about the miracle of our muscles.

I have always been fascinated with the anatomy of the human body.  It amazes me how everything works together so beautifully, and if the smallest thing goes wrong, the entire body is impacted.

God has given us the ability to grow stronger by building our muscles, which can only happen through pain.  We build muscles by tearing them down first.  This is done through putting weight and resistance on them, making them work so hard that they rip and tear.  Then the miracle happens…the muscles repair themselves by building little bridges of more muscle tissue where the little tears are…binding them…building them…healing them.

This morning as I was lying in bed, trying to wake up, and trying to get my very tired and achy body to move, I remembered my pectoral butterflies.  I remembered that my muscles were in the process of repairing themselves and growing stronger.

I hate it when people say, “What doesn’t kill us makes us stronger.” (Sometimes I wish it would kill me.)  Or in the midst of a difficult circumstance someone says, “God is building your character.”  I hate it, because when people say these things it’s usually to make themselves feel better than the person going through the difficult time.

It’s not that I don’t think God desires that we have good character, but I believe He is more interested in building our dependence on Him and our desire for Him.  And, many times God tears us so that we become aware of just how much we need Him and want Him in our lives.

And, He has given us such an amazing picture of how this works.  Just like our muscles are built through resistance, our faith is built through resistance.   We come face to face with problems that are bigger than we can handle.  We find ourselves struggling with emotions and fears and doubts that weigh us down.  We look around and find ourselves alone, going against the flow, knowing that what comes next just might knock our feet out from under us.  It’s too much.  We can’t do it.  The fear swallows us alive.  Our hearts yearn for something more, but there is no hope.

That’s when we throw our hands up in the air.  We give up.  And that’s exactly where we need to be.  It’s where I am.

Becuase only when I give up does God step in and take over.

He will let me fail.  He will let me be torn down.  He will let the resistance come.  Because it shows me how much I need Him….how much I love Him….how much I can trust Him….He is my Healer.  He is my Defender.  He is the One who is Victorious.

I feel the burning in my bones for more of Him, and I will rest in that.