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Weight Belts

I began my weightlifting journey freshman year of high school. I remember walking into the field house like it was yesterday. The clanging of the iron, the grunting and groaning of young men, and the accessory equipment hanging along the walls. Not too long into our off-season training, we had to perform a one rep max back squat, and we got to watch the varsity team go first. They were so huge! Well, at least they were to me as a freshman. Some of those guys were squatting well over 300 pounds which was so impressive. I remember when our starting middle linebacker got up to squat. He went on to play at the Air Force Academy, and this guy was all muscle. As he stepped into the squat rack, I saw him motion to one of his teammates. A few moments later I witnessed two things for the first time – A 350 pound back squat and someone wearing a weight belt.

If you’ve never worn a weight belt before, let me try and dispel some of the myths out there. First, a weight belt is not designed to compensate for a lack of core strength. Some people think the use of a belt is to make up for a lack of strength when in fact it’s quite the opposite. Others think the belt functions like a brace to support your torso when it really doesn’t. The function of a weight belt is to help increase the use of your abs and lower-back muscles. It reduces stress on the spine, it creates better biomechanics, which ultimately means better performance. The belt doesn’t hide weakness, it helps you achieve maximum power. On my heavy training days when I’m squatting or deadlifting, you’ll find me in a weight belt for sure.

In today’s reading, you’re going to read about another kind of belt. A belt God gives us to find direction and purpose in life. It’s the belt of truth. Truth is such an interesting topic in our society because it means different things to different people. In fact, I would argue most of you are quite comfortable being around people who think totally different things than you do. Part of how we build community is to set aside differences and look for common ground. And as we meet new people and learn new ways of living, we’ll take in new truth in exchange for the old.

In our society, truth is not so absolute. The truth is not denied, but rather we recognize it as incomplete. People know they don’t know everything. The explosion of technology and resources on topics is too vast for all but the serious scholars to dive in deep. We acknowledge that we don’t know, we seek to know, and so over time more truth is revealed to us. Of course, the downside being that the next internet article or Wikipedia entry could incorrectly reshape our worldview. That’s why God’s belt of truth is so critical.

Just like the weight belt in the gym, God’s belt of truth is not about concealing a core weakness. Rather, it’s about learning how to maximize performance in our everyday lives. Until you know the truth about who God is and who He says you are, you're not getting the most out of life. You may think you are, but you’re really not. God reveals His truth to us through His Word, through the world at large, and through those around you who are on the same journey. If you want to live a deep, rich, and fully flourishing life, put on the belt of God’s truth, and get ready to see life in a whole new way.

Questions for Reflection:

Have you ever thought you were right about something and defended your position strongly only to discover you were actually wrong?

When you learn something new that changes your beliefs, how difficult is it to let go of the old belief?

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