Monday, September 12, 2016

Hip rolls and a spiritual exercise

The physical therapist gave me four or five exercises. Six months later, I’m still doing one of them: hip rolls, a set of 30, morning and evening. (This is not a dance move; I do these lying on the floor.)

The other day I thought of how it could be a spiritual exercise, not just a physical one. It would involve slowing down, probably a good idea for a perpetually-in-a-rush guy like me. Here’s the idea: as I begin the first iteration, to remember a phrase or a short passage from the Bible, from chapter 1 of something. On the second, something from chapter 2 of something. And so on. Here’s one possible list:

  1. The word became flesh and dwelt among us, from John 1. This is the astonishing idea that Jesus came to earth and pitched his tent among us. Amazing!
  2. Jesus grew in wisdom and stature, and in favor with God and man (everybody needs to grow: even Jesus needed to!), Luke 2
  3. Trust in the Lord with all your heart…, Proverbs 3
  4. Jesus was tempted in all things as we are, from Hebrews 4
  5. [A priest] can deal gently with the ignorant and wayward, since he himself is beset by weakness, from Hebrews 5 (a good reminder, since we are also priests according to 1 Peter 2)
  6. Seek first his kingdom… from Matthew 6
  7. If anyone wants to do God’s will, he’ll know whether I’m speaking from God or just making all this stuff up: it’ important to be willing to do God’s will, from John 7
  8. What does it profit a man to gain the whole world and forfeit his soul? from Mark 8
  9. And God is able to make all grace abound to you, that always having all suffiency in everything, you may have an abundance for every good work. from 2 Corinthians 9
  10. When words are many, sin is not absent; but he who holds his tongue is wise, from Proverbs 10
  11. He who goes about as a talebearer reveals secrets, but he who is trustworthy conceals a matter. from Proverbs 11
  12. Don’t be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind: Romans 12
  13. A new command I give you: love one another as I have loved you, John 13
  14. He who has my commands and keeps them… I will reveal myself to him: knowledge through obedience, from John 14
  15. Remain in me, and I will remain in you, John 15
  16. Ask and you will receive, that your joy may be made full, John 16
  17. This is eternal life: to know God and Jesus Christ, John 17
  18. Death and life are in the power of the tongue, Prov. 18
  19. The son of man came to seek and to save the lost, Luke 19
  20. Whoever wishes to be great among you must be your servant… Matthew 20
  21. The king’s hand is in the heart of the Lord… Proverbs 21
  22. A prudent man sees danger and takes cover; the foolish keep going and suffer for it. Proverbs 22
    or My God my God why have you forsaken me Psalm 22. Jesus suffered much.
  23. The Lord is my shepherd; I shall not want
  24. I always do my best to keep a blameless conscience both before God and before men Acts 24
  25. A word aptly spoken is like apples of gold in settings of silver Pr. 25
  26. As a door turns on his hinges, so the sluggard turns on his bed Pr. 26 (probably there’s a better verse somewhere, but that’s what came to mind)
  27. Do not boast about tomorrow, for you don’t know… Pr. 27
  28. I am with you always even to the end of the age Matthew 28
  29. You will seek me and find me, and I will be found by you Jer. 29
  30. Every word of God proves true; he is a shield to all who take refuge in him Pr. 30
There’s already some variation in the verses I use, and sometimes I just murmur, “23” (or whatever number I’m skipping) but it’s good for me to remember these cautions and encouragements and examples, that is, when I remember to remember them.

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