What are you prepared to do?
What you’re gonna do is written all over your face. Who are you kidding? Other than yourself.
Perhaps it has come from being in the fitness and motivation business for a long time, but I know whether you are going to follow through on your discipline or not. I can tell, just by looking.
Oh, finishers and the also-rans may both have purchased new sneakers or new workout shorts or a new swim suit. They may have both invested in some new gear, perhaps hand weights or a yoga mat or even large scale exercise equipment. But that doesn’t spell success. In fact, often the biggest spenders are the least compliant. They have fulfilled their responsibility (in their own mind) by making the purchase. As if to say, “See, I mean business. Look what I am willing to spend.”
No, people who will follow through come prepared. They may bring a pencil and paper to write down the workout. Or they have scheduled several sessions or cleared their schedule many weeks in advance. They have told others what they are planning. In short, it’s obvious their heart is in this.
I love those people. They are great to work with. The others…well, I feel like I am stealing from them. Perhaps even complicit in a lie they aren’t telling me, but I know. And this doesn’t come from reading their minds. It’s just apparent in how they behave.
How incredibly obvious must this be to God? When our behavior tells the truth while our mouths deceive. We act according to our heart condition even while our speech is conflicting? God knows our hearts. He reads them as He reads our minds.
Jesus said to them,“You are the ones who justify yourselves in the eyes of others, but God knows your hearts. ~ Luke 16:15
His discipline is designed to get us to agree with ourselves. To look at doing, our failures and successes, and see if we aren’t tripping ourselves up. Not because we’re “not trying hard enough” but because our hearts aren’t on board. God knows our hearts. He wants our hearts. So our lives would be complete truth.
I look at the successful people I know and they come prepared. They do the homework and bring their questions. They’re engaged in the process and leave with a plan for the next step. They’re on the success path. It isn’t an accident. They do it on purpose.
And there may be no money involved at all. This counts as much for relationships and family life as it does for Fortune 500 companies. For sports teams and pick up games as much as for small businesses. We come prepared for the things we intend to follow through on. If we don’t, we need to ask ourselves whether our heart is really in this. Because it’s obvious to everyone else.
We may scurry through life hoping to live in a way that “qualifies us” for the heavenly selection. pick me! pick me! But I expect that God, who knows my heart, knows good and well whether I am ready. He has told me to be prepared, in season and out of season. Because I won’t know when the time is coming. He knows that is the only way to live a consistent life. Heart, mind and body together toward one objective.
When we falter, that’s just God getting our attention: Hey, your heart’s not in that! Then we have to choose whether we will prepare our heart or not. The rest will follow.