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The Whiteboard

Central to every CrossFit gym I’ve ever been in is this nonchalant white rectangle hanging on the wall known as the whiteboard. Whether digital or old school, the whiteboard is the repository for the work of the day. Even though we publish our workouts the night before, there are some athletes who know better than to look, lest they began making excuses for why they shouldn’t come the next day. Instead, like gifts under a tree, they walk in and make a beeline to the whiteboard. Now as a coach, I’ve seen a variety of responses. It runs the gamut from elation to full on depression. My favorite response though is the athlete who quickly scans the whiteboard and remarks, “That doesn’t look too bad.” Nine times out of ten, when we least expect it, the work surprises us the most.

When it comes to physical fitness, work is the path to growth. So, the whiteboard becomes a significant piece of equipment in the gym. It’s hilarious because it’s simultaneously the most benign tool yet also the most dangerous. With one dry erase marker a coach can knock an entire class to their knees. Yet in the same moment, she can write an inspiring quote just above the WOD. Do you see the dichotomy? Here’s this inanimate object with the capacity to make you laugh or cry or both. And while your emotions are stirring, the work isn’t changing. The work doesn’t change until it changes you. Go back and read that one more time. Post it to your feed. Once you begin to experience results from the pursuit of fitness, you grow to embrace the work, and you grow to love the whiteboard.

When it comes to spiritual fitness, work is also the path to growth, or shalom as I like to think of it. Your pursuit of a rich and flourishing life will not happen without effort. And for that, you need a whiteboard as well, containing a plan for today’s work. That’s one way the Bible functions in the lives of those pursuing spiritual fitness. It's the repository for the work we complete in pursuit of shalom. Just like the whiteboard, it stirs up a number of emotions as well. Take for instance when the disciples ask Jesus how many times they should forgive someone who offends them. Jesus’ reply? Seventy times seven. That’s right, 490 times. Some of you reading this are thinking God doesn’t really know the heart of the person who hurt you, because if He did, He would give you a pass. But the truth is the work of forgiveness isn’t for them, it’s for you. While you’re angry or frustrated at the call to forgive, it’s not changing. The work of spiritual growth doesn’t change until it changes you. When bitterness or resentment or materialism or selfishness are no longer one of your top five strengths, you’ll begin to embrace the path to shalom because you realize just how God is refining you through the process.

As you read today’s Scripture, I want you to see the Author is laying out some work for you, a spiritual WOD if you will. In fact, I’m going to post it below so you can see how it correlates with the reading. The way I see it, you’ve got two choices in life – you can either try to figure it out on your own or you can trust it to God. The Good News is He’s got a path laid out for you, and today’s work is waiting on your Spiritual Whiteboard.

Galatians 6:1-10 (For Quality)

· Restore others with gentleness

· Bear other’s burdens

· Stay humble

· Compare yourself with yourself

· Bless those who teach you

· Sow only what you really want to reap

· Don’t do your work selfishly

· Work in the Spirit of God

· Keep going, even on days when you don’t feel like it (Don’t Quit!)

Questions for Reflection:

Of the nine movements in Paul’s Spiritual WOD, which one do you struggle with the most?

Reflect on a time when you thought something was going to be easy, but it actually required a ton of effort.

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