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My Answer: Does gym time mask problems?

April 18, 2014|By Billy Graham

Q: My wife gets after me because she says I spend too much time at the gym. I admit I do go there every day for several hours or so after work, but God wants us to take care of our bodies, doesn't he? — M.J.

A: Yes, of course God wants us to take care of the bodies he has given us, and proper exercise is certainly part of that. The Bible says, "You are not your own; you were bought at a price. Therefore honor God with your bodies" (1 Corinthians 6:19-20).

At the same time, I urge you to take seriously what your wife is saying, and ask yourself why you're spending so much time at the gym. Frankly, the reasons may be hard for you to face honestly, but you need to do it anyway, for your sake and the sake of your marriage and family.

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Are you seeking to escape from your responsibilities at home? Has the gym become your social life? Or are you too preoccupied with your physical appearance?

Whatever your reasons, face them honestly, and if they need correcting, ask God to help you get your life back in balance. Your family needs you — and you need them. Don't let anything come between you and your responsibilities at home.

Most of all, has this taken the place of God in your life? God not only gave us a body and a mind, but he also gave us a soul so we can know him. Make Christ the center of your life, and then make it your goal to live for him.

The Bible says, "For physical training is of some value, but godliness has value for all things, holding promise for both the present life and the life to come" (1 Timothy 4:8).

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Q: Out of curiosity, I read through one of the Gospels recently, and I was puzzled why some people opposed Jesus and even wanted to kill him. It seems to me that they should have welcomed him. It didn't make sense to me. — P.R.

A: No, it doesn't make sense — not if we truly understand who Jesus was and why he came to earth. He was the divine son of God, sent from heaven to bless us and make our lives better. Why would anyone be opposed to that?

And yet you're right. From the beginning some opposed Jesus and wanted to get rid of him. When he visited his hometown, people became enraged at his claim to be the predicted Messiah and attempted to throw him off a nearby cliff.

After he revealed the hypocrisy of some of the religious leaders, they reacted angrily and began plotting his death. Pilate, the Roman governor, thought Jesus was innocent but still gave in to the pressure of the crowd and ordered his execution.

Why did they oppose him? Some were afraid of losing their wealth or power if Jesus became popular. Others hated him because he exposed their sins, and they didn't want to repent. Still others turned against him because he refused to meet their selfish demands.

What keeps you from surrendering your life to Jesus? Are you clinging to some sin you don't want to give up (although you know it might destroy you)? Or are you determined to keep control of your life instead of turning it over to God?

Whatever your reasons, face them honestly, and then repent of them and commit your life to Christ. The Bible says, "For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord" (Romans 6:23).

(Send your queries to "My Answer," c/o Billy Graham, Billy Graham Evangelistic Assn. 1 Billy Graham Parkway, Charlotte, N.C., 28201; call 1-(877) 2-GRAHAM; or visit http://www.billygraham.org.)

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