Toward Sunday

We are in the midst of three “stand alone” worship gatherings. Linda’s message yesterday invited reflection on Knitting Faith.  This week we turn to Crossfit & Church.  

Take a moment to recall the way fitness was a part of your childhood.   How do you relate to fitness today?

Crossfit is a rapidly growing fitness program started by Greg & Lauren Glassman in 2000. Over 3,400 Crossfit gyms have opened in the last twelve years across the county.  In an article titled “Understanding CrossFit” (April 2007) Coach Greg Glassman writes,

We sought to build a program that would best prepare trainees for any physical contingency—prepare them not only for the unknown but for the unknowable as well. The CrossFit prescription is “constantly varied, high-intensity, functional movement.” … The methodology that drives CrossFit is entirely empirical. We believe that meaningful statements about safety, efficacy, and efficiency, the three most important and interdependent facets of any fitness program, can be supported only by measurable, observable, repeatable facts; i.e., data. We call this approach “evidence-based fitness.” 

Worship this coming Sunday will invite us to consider what the church might learn from Crossfit.

Our Scripture this week is from Ephesians 6.10-20. The text lifts up images that relate to fitness, bodies, and faith.

David Cameron writes,

[Ephesians] begins with a gentle swell of praise for God, whose covenant of grace has been revealed in Christ to be not just for the Jews but for the Gentiles as well. God will unite them into one body … In Ephesians 6:10, the author begins a summation of the letter designed to punch home his main themes. He resorts to a common militaristic image of body armor that his audience would see on Roman soldiers daily, but in a nose-tweaking twist, he reinvents the image in a most non-militaristic way. He appropriates the common parts of armor – belt, breastplate, shield – but he assigns them uncommon values: truth, righteousness, faith (from the blog Gleanings from the Text).

Consider these verses from Ephesians in relationship to Crossfit’s empirical methodology.  The author of Ephesians calls followers of the way of Jesus to put on truth, righteousness, faith.  This is a call to practice being church by living out these counter-cultural values.  How might we measure how well we’re living out these uncommon values?

John Wesley, the founder of the Methodist movement, called followers to stay in love with God by practicing the Christian disciplines.  Wesley identified six Christian disciplines (weekly worship, communion, searching the Scriptures, prayer, fasting, witness).  What measurable goals do you have around these disciplines?  How are you doing with those goals?  If you don’t have goals at this time, what might it be like to identify a goal for one of these disciplines?

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