Leaning On My Own Understanding – Trusting in HIS Perfection, Strength, and Sufficiency

(Note: Post outline was written a couple weeks ago.)

One day I was praying and asking YHVH why I didn’t feel right about starting a new workout challenge. It dawned that I was reverting back to my old ways of “relying on myself” to change me into who I wanted to be, instead of trusting God to provide a way.

This doesn’t mean that working out is wrong. Far from it! Working out is a great way to have fun and stay fit. However, this situation made me need to really STOP and think about why I wanted to do it. Here were the answers I found:

  • Get a better body
  • Feel cool, like other workout warriors
  • Feel better about myself and my abilities

I needed to reframe my approach.

  • I work out because it’s fun, and it helps me physically and mentally.

In my school that day, I had a lesson on Augustine’s sermon XXVI, about Peter, and how he sunk because of the storm around him. Here’s the story: Peter stepped out of the boat with full confidence in Jesus’ power to hold him up. But then he saw the storm around him, and as he doubted and grew fearful, he sank. As he sank, he called out, “Lord, save me!” Jesus immediately rescued him and asked the piercing question, “Peter, why did you doubt?”

This is my main take-away from Augustine’s perspective – That Peter stopped relying on Yeshua’s strength, and tried to do it on his own strength. And he failed.

He failed just like the rest of us do, when we decide we don’t need to look in the Bible for an answer. When we don’t bother to pray about an issue. When we try and fix it ourselves, using logic or other people’s advice. We fail.

We fail because we are trusting on our own strength.

For me, this meant literally trusting on myself in everything. In my earlier teen years I thought in terms of logic and systematic analysis. That background has been great for my education, but not so good for when I was developing my own opinions on faith, life, and my future. Trusting in myself caused me to make plenty of mistakes, including the big one of doing a schooling curriculum that I knew God was telling me I would regret. And, although God worked through it to snap me awake and teach me some important things, I did regret it.

Now I trust in myself less – or at least I thought I did. Beginning this fitness journey, (which pretty much started at the beginning of December,) should have begun first with prayer and asking God to lend me his strength, instead of trying to figure it out on my own.

This morning, YHVH let me know that it’s not my biceps that carry me through the workouts – it’s the biceps he gave me to do the chores. It’s not my organizational skills that allow me to meal plan – it’s his organizational skills he gave to me to be able to get through the day smoothly. It’s not my talents – It’s His talents, for His glory.

Bottom line: STOP trusting in yourself. START trusting in God to supply all your strength. You have more strength through Him than you could ever have without Him.

“Trust in the Lord with all your heart,
And lean not on your own understanding;
In all your ways acknowledge Him,
And He shall direct your paths.

Do not be wise in your own eyes;
Fear the Lord and depart from evil.
It will be health to your flesh,
And strength to your bones.”

Proverbs 3:5-8, NKJV

Just … wow. Reread those four verses.

We often trust in our own strength. Sometimes we don’t even realize it, like me with working out. When we fall, it’s our own fault for doubting that His strength is enough.

But when we fall – what’s the right choice?

To call on Him again. To say, “I failed – but you never fail. Save me!” And He will! Just like he did with Peter, Yeshua can save you with His strength.


“My son, do not despise the chastening of the Lord,

Nor detest His correction;

For whom the Lord loves He corrects,

Just as a father the son in whom he delights.

Proverbs 3: 11-12, NKJV

So, if you’re feeling the sting of correction that says, “Stop doing it yourself! Ask me for MY plans and MY strength”, then concede. Repent. Ask for His strength.

“Ask, and it will be given to you; seek, and you will find; knock, and it will be opened to you. For everyone who asks receives, and he who seeks finds, and to him who knocks it will be opened. Or what man is there among you who, if his son asks for bread, will give him a stone? Or if he asks for a fish, will he give him a serpent? If you then, being evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father who is in heaven give good things to those who ask Him!” Mathew 7:7-11, NKJV

YHVH is your loving Father! He won’t cheat you or cheapen the gift by giving you some half-hearted attempt at a 20 lb weight! No way! He’ll give you the strength to lift a whole 300-pounder! (Metaphorically speaking.) THAT’S the kind of strength I’m talking about!

So STOP. Lean on Him. And he will give you rest and strength.

Makayla

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January Goals + Inspiration!!

Hellllllooo all of y’all! How have you been, physically and mentally and spiritually and emotionally and everything in between? (Let me know in the comments! 😝) Whose ready to start the year right? (I hope you smashed your fist into your palm and yelled, “Let’s do it!”

Here, lemme say it for the both of us …

LET’S DO THIS THANG!!!!

(alright, now that I’ve got you all hyped up for success, let’s get into Monthly Goals again … and it’s January 2021! Crazy!)

My January Goals! (I’ll do a recap at the end of the month to share how things went!!)

  • Complete the Chloe Ting 2020 workout. (Which I just did! Woohoo!! It was intense!!!! Even so, those with a decent amount of endurance and willpower can crush it! To see my tips on completing the challenge well, see this link!) I had a BLAST with this one! Throughout an injury, busy days, and lack of sleep, I persevered and you can too! But remember: To God be the glory! Without Him as my strength, I can do nothing.
  • Go to bed at 9:00 every night! A while back I was talking to one of my friends, who also suffers through the Chloe Ting workouts with me – He goes to bed at 9:00. (NINE, you guys!! How??!!) Anyway, I know it’s better for my health, so I’m going to try to get to bed as soon as I get in from work. *nods*
  • Finish reading the Old Testament – read Job to Malachi!
  • Complete 20 Lessons of RPC school
  • Complete 5 Math Lessons (each “lesson” is 5 sections)
  • Drink more water (I’ll bet this is on everybody’s goals list, but for good reason!)
  • Make more blog posts, but don’t let it take over my life. (I’m not fantastic at balancing life, blogging, and school, but I’m trying to get better while still making sure my posts are meaningful and well-written!)

The rest of this month, I plan to work on a few new scales and scale patterns (piano), play violin consistently, paint with watercolors and acrylics, and come up with new bullet-journaling ideas!

Inspiration … from bloggers!

A few days ago I read this post by Tanya over at ‘Inspired to Inspire’, and I found it so meaningful because I have all these visions of what I want to be like in the future, but am I living up to them? Tanya’s post (read it here!) reminded me to live like my future self.

I don’t want to live a stagnant, unexciting life – I want to be passionate, adventurous, strong, resilient, productive, bubbly, energetic, hardworking, efficient, proactive, committed, and godly. I know it takes years to develop these qualities. I know that it’s hard, and the journey there can be exhausting and painful! But I also know that it is so, so worth it!

Here are my anthem songs for this month!!


Feel free to join me in my goals! What are some of your goals for this month? I’d love to hear about it in the comments! I might even join you! Remember, “Teamwork makes the dream work!”

Alrighty, with that cheesy saying, I shall leave you cringing. Stay awesome, y’all!

Makayla

I completed the 2020 Challenge!

Hey everyone! Yes, it’s in the title, but I must say it again … I completed the 2020 challenge! 😂

As always, I didn’t regret it! It was pretty fun throughout the whole challenge, and I absolutely reccommend it to all of you fitness buffs! I have officially graduated! 🤣 I wonder if Chloe is going to post a 2021 Challenge …

Related posts:

My Experience

It’s true that this workout program is a little more intense than the 2019 SHRED. There’s at least one extra workout video per day, sometimes two extra, so it can be difficult, but hey, that’s why they call it a ‘Challenge’!

And this one certainly was a challenge! Overall, it was great as a second step from the 2019 challenge. It included a lot more high-intensity workouts, and it really demanded that I make a concerted effort to set aside time during the day for the workouts. Some of the workouts had weights, but not to worry for those of you who don’t have them (myself included), there are also non-weight alternatives.

One thing I’d like to mention is that it took me three weeks instead of two. I took extra rest days, because of events in my life and schedule that I couldn’t have predicted. I just wanted y’all to remember that it’s okay if you have to take extra rest days because of how you’re feeling or something unexpected that comes up in your schedule. Don’t stress it – the important thing is that you work hard and don’t procrastinate!


Here’s why you should do this workout in particular …
  1. Progress! If you’ve just come down off the 2019 Challenge, or any other challenge, it’s important to ponder whether you want to continue on this specific fitness journey. If so, you need to keep up the habits you developed, otherwise you may slide back into your former state, undoing all the work you’ve done. Taking another big step will set you up for progress.
  2. Specific. There are some ways that simply running lots and throwing around hay bales cannot give you the results you may want. Although some may consider workouts to be “fake work”, (which is true!), this workout allows you to target certain parts of your body for muscle gain. (Note that I did not say weight loss. You can’t target parts of your body for weight (fat) loss, because fat spreads itself out. However, by focusing on exercises for certain parts of the body, and by repeating those exercises consistently, you can increase muscle gain.)
  3. Maintenance! During the winter months, we tend to lead more sedentary lifestyles, so this is a great indoor option to keep you ready (and prepare you!) for activities in the warmer parts of the year, when going outside is more fun, and running games are more feasible! 😉
  4. Training. This challenge provides a pretty good all-around workout for advanced fitness goals. I’m currently working towards a goal of a higher endurance level (for max performance and stamina) and more fullbody toning (which, in my case, I want for volleyball. Volleyball is a great sport because people in any fitness level can play, but it’s really only the skilled ones in top shape who become good players, which is why I want more full-body strength and co-ordination.) But regardless of which sport you play, you can study up on what ways you need to be fit in order to play that sport the best you can, then work on those.

Tips!
  • Keep yourself accountable. Push yourself. Be your own tough and mean fitness trainer! Don’t give up unless you’re about to pull something. Then, break for all you’re worth! (Keeping consistent and pushing your boundaries gives you the full experience, and it makes the breaks so much better!
  • Keep a positive attitude about the exercises. Try not to “hate” a certain exercise … ironically, if you dislike it, it’s probably the one you need to do the most! So challenge yourself to do more and go further.
  • Drink water! Actually, better yet, buy yourself an absolutely gorgous and chic water bottle (for the girls!) and a totally sleek and cool hydroflask (for the guys!) The reasoning is that you’ll drink more often (and why not feel like a boss every time you do, am I right?) 😉

Well, bye everyone! I really hope y’all are all doing well! Let’s talk in the comments about fitness, faith, and falafels! (Or not …) Anyway!

Makayla

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