Mark 2.17 records, Jesus, overhearing, shot back, “Who needs a doctor: the healthy or the sick? I’m here inviting the sin-sick, not the spiritually-fit.MSG
When we come to the Lord Jesus we need to be sick not well. We need to be sick because we need to recognize our need for a doctor. Jesus alone can restore us to God. No religion, no good works, no other ‘gods’ can bring us into a personal relationship with the One True God.
Yet what is the goal of the doctor? It is healing. The goal of the doctor is to make us spiritually fit, not keep us in sin sickness. Like everything else in the Kingdom of the One True God, His definitions of sickness and health are opposite of men. Spiritual fitness is the life of Jesus.
Man’s spiritual fitness is massive scripture knowledge, fine sounding prayers, eloquence in teaching, and a gentleness that appears humble. It is commitment to and execution of the spiritual disciplines. Yet its focus remains on the health of the individual working on his spiritual fitness. Like the frequent looks we take in the mirror to see how we are doing with our physical heath, so the man-made spiritually healthy are constantly evaluating themselves and others for personal fitness.
God centered fitness, the Jesus life of fitness, includes many of the same things. Scripture is known but not worshipped, prayers are made but for seeking God and His will on earth as it is in heaven, and not for men. Disciplines are practiced but they are private and a means to the ends of becoming more like Jesus. Jesus was marked by service, humility, gentleness, love, and sacrifice. He gave His life so all could live.
This is true spiritual fitness, a life surrendered in humility and relative obscurity for the glory of God and the salvation of men. It has no sexy ‘muscles’ just a dogged, wiry perseverance in making Jesus greater and self-less.