Billy Graham brought this to my attention through his autobiography – Just As I Am. Being on the road travelling 9 months of the year and never really finding a rhythm from one day to the next – exercise was a much a daily regimen as was his daily devotions. If I remember correctly, he made every member of his leadership team that was travelling with him involved as well.
To him, he could not perform the many, many tasks God was giving him to do unless he was physically capable of doing them and there was no way he was not going to do all the tasks that God had given him to do.
Jesus was in the same situation. He just travelled across a stormy lake, took care of spiritual warfare matters there on the lake, landed, met a demon possessed man who had as many as 2,000 demons in him – set him free. Then travelled back across the lake only to find that people had not left and were waiting for him to return. There a leading Pharisee wants him to come to his house to heal his only daughter. Stuff happens along the way. Daughter is now dead and Jesus resurrects her after taking verbal abuse from the crowd outside – and the day does not end.
Being a carpenter or same say a stone mason by trade surely helping in developing the physique to endure such arduous days, and all the walking and only a bit of eating during the day must have kept Him in pretty good shape.
Paul says that physical exercise really doesn’t benefit one, it is the spiritual exercise that matters. Who am I to argue with Paul, however, a good physique shows that you are disciplined and is the outward appearance of disciplines you might also possess in the spirit and in the mind.
At the end of the day, are we able to follow God as He asks us to walk with Him in areas that require us to be physically fit? Let’s give Him that option of taking us there and give testimony to others of our readiness to go where He calls us to go.