Let’s talk about how to get spiritually fit. But first, if someone knocked on your door and said to you, “You’re unworthy of good and you don’t deserve happiness” what would you do? Would you say, “Come on in and have some tea!”, or would you slam the door on their face?
We may, or may not, realize that thoughts that say the very same thing are much more subtle. However, rather than saying “you” they say, “I”. Often they’re demeaning and ugly, but we often let these thoughts in unwittingly. Not only that, but we entertain these ugly intruders—maybe not with tea—but we listen to them, and we accept their hateful and false lies about ourselves as true.
Getting spiritually fit begins by recognizing these thoughts as not your thought, and resisting their intrusion. And the second part of being spiritually fit comes by realizing you have Biblical authority to kick out these aggressive suggestions as both untrue and unreal. The good news is that’s all they are — suggestions.
How do we know we have Biblical authority? Well, Jesus showed and told us what he did after John baptized him. He faced down very aggressive thoughts—so aggressive that the Bible described these thoughts as the Devil (see Matthew 4:1-11) .
Jesus didn’t accept these (d)evil suggestions either. He refuted them, one by one, with scripture, the Word of God. And since Jesus is “the way ” we can do the same thing. It’s so precious that Jesus shared with us this challenge and told us how he prayed. Jesus gave us this powerful insight so that we’d know what to do when the same thing happened to us — to exercise divine Truth — the power of God to help us.
We can exercise God’s power by putting into action what’s true about ourselves, and by acknowledging that God made us good, holy, and perfect. By starting with your thinking you can act with authority, like Jesus did, by acknowledging that God’s is ever-present with you and that you can never be made to hear or heed another voice but God’s.
Another thing you can exercise — drop the dead-weight concept that says “I’m a sinner.” Exercise your goodness by letting that belief of being a sinner drop away. Yes, we all have made mistakes, but the notion that you’re permanently stained by someone else’s sin, or your own sins, or that sin defines you, is simply not true. That’s because God, Spirit, made His children — you and me — spiritually perfect. This Spirit-based spiritual perfection is eternal, and it alone defines our individual, spiritual identities.
Perfection and holiness require exercise — put these God-bestowed qualities into action. Strive to know, through prayer, that God provides only good for all His beloved children. Therefore God empowers you to do good for yourself, your family, and your community—co-workers, fellow drivers, and your neighborhood.
Practice not profession, understanding not belief, gain the ear and right hand of omnipotence and they assuredly call down infinite blessings. Trustworthiness is the foundation of enlightened faith. Without a fitness for holiness, we cannot receive holiness.
—Mary Baker Eddy, Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures, p.15
so worship I the God of my fathers, believing all things which are written in the law and in the prophets: … And herein do I exercise myself, to have always a conscience void of offence toward God, and toward men.
—Acts 24:14 so, 16