Discipline. A word many of us both love and hate. I love the discipline of the airline pilot as he goes through his pre-flight procedures….not to fond of it when the TSA agent is doing her job and throws away a brand new can of hair spray. Love the discipline of the civil engineers who designed the overpasses on Intestate 4…not excited about the discipline of the Florida Highway Patrolman and his radar gun. Love watching the results of the discipline of premiere athletes…really hate the discipline of exercise. This weekend I was blessed to watch the discipline of 1,000s of people played out. I participated in the Walt Disney World Half Marathon as a spectator – see last sentence in paragraph above. Over 27,000 people ran, walked, jogged and/or slogged (slow jog) their way from Epcot Center, through the Magic Kingdom and back to Epcot – a distance of 13.1 miles. And there were also quite a few wheelchair racers who blew through that course – several of them multi-amputees. Still brings tears to my eyes and can cause me some level of shame! Check this out to “feel my pain.”
What is amazing is that 99% of the athletes did it just to do it. Now they did get a medal – and since this is a Disney event it was a VERY nice medal….suitable for mounting, for sure. And I would say 90% of these folks spent LOTS of time preparing for this single event. It took much discipline to go from the couch to the treadmill or to the street and get moving. Well, the first time it might have been based on some emotional decision but later as the going got rougher – whether that was rainy weather or achy knees or the finances to purchase new shoes – discipline is what kept them going. Self-discipline. I am reminded of the verse from I Corinthian 9:27 - I discipline my body like an athlete, training it to do what it should. Otherwise, I fear that after preaching to others I myself might be disqualified. (New Living Translation)
Discipline is setting your mind to doing something and then buffeting your body to do what your Spirit, soul or mind want to do. And many ways, it is not punishment because we are WAY more than just flesh and blood. We can believe, desire and think about doing something all we want but if our body doesn’t engage it is not happening.
So what is your “something?” Run a half marathon – or a FULL? Lose 20 pounds? Clean out the garage? Have a daily quiet time? Get out of debt? Write a book?
Over the next couple of days, I am going to spend time determining what my “somethings” are for 2012 and then I am going to go about disciplining my body to make it happen.
What about you? Would love to hear what your somethings will be in 2012. Let’s embrace what we LOVE about discipline – the results and not focus on the part we HATE – the pain of getting the results!