When I lived in California, I loved going for morning bike rides. There were certain routes I liked to ride and my usual distance was between twenty to twenty-five miles. This was time spent thinking about my story, or pondering a Bible study, or simply enjoying my time outside.
One morning, as I prepared to ride, I opened my cycling app, an app that tracked my route and collected my stats for me. When finished, I would upload the ride, which would show me my distance, speed, calories burned, etc.
Many people used this popular exercise app. The top people on the app were those who dedicated whole portions of their day to working out. I rarely looked at their stats because I didn’t hope to make it that high on the roster.
As I headed out, I started my app and enjoyed the ride. The wind in my face. The fresh morning air. And, outside of town, the peace of the countryside.
I returned home, having completed twenty-two miles – not in record time, but that didn’t bother me. After I put my bike away in the garage, I uploaded my ride and checked the stats. Lo and behold, I was number one above all others. I gasped. How could this be?
That’s when I realized my mistake. While I had gone for a bike ride, I logged in on the app as being on the treadmill. All those miles zipping along at a slower speed for a cyclist were mighty fast for a treadmill runner. To the app, I appeared to have been doing some Olympic running and had gotten to the head of the exercise guru pack.
A very heady moment indeed. But, also a lie. An accidental lie, but a lie nonetheless.
What to do? Who would really notice a nobody and her stats? I would sink back to obscurity the next day when I recorded my normal exercise routine. Did this mistake really matter?
Of course it mattered. If I left that workout as is, I would know, and God would know, even if no one else ever did. He knows every secret within me. I can’t hide from Him, and I shouldn’t want to.
“Would not God search this out? For He knows the secrets of the heart.” Psalm 44:21 (NKJV)
If I left the stats as they were, I would be lying and would become an abomination to the Lord. Whoa. That’s very scary. I would much rather strive to be a delight to Him, even at the cost of everything I am.
“Lying lips are an abomination to the LORD, But those who deal truthfully are His delight.” Proverbs 12:22 (NKJV)
I am not a tech savvy person so it took me a little while to figure out how to change my workout from treadmill to cycling, but I did it. I was no longer on top of the pack and that was okay. I am not a top-of-the-pack sort of person anyway. I don’t exercise to receive glory. I exercise to care for this physical home God has given me.
It isn’t just my physical being I need to care for though. I need to make sure my heart is lined up with God. I must understand what He wants for me to do in order to be content in my life, and to serve Him to the best of my ability.
“I have inclined my heart to perform Your statutes Forever, to the very end.” Psalm 119:112 (NKJV)
When I realized the mistake I made, I understood erasing the workout completely would be better than leaving misinformation for all to see. Maybe they wouldn’t have noticed. Maybe no one would ever had called me on that Olympic level workout. But, I’m called to a higher standard. I know what is required of me, and I intend to do what delights Him.
“He has shown you, O man, what is good;
And what does the LORD require of you
But to do justly,
To love mercy,
And to walk humbly with your God?”
Micah 6:8 (NKJV)