The Spiritual Side to Fitness: Why Are So Many Christians Unhealthy?

Today’s guest post comes to us from a long-time member of my Titanium Coaching Network, Kent Wilson. Kent is an ordained Lutheran minister who now serves as an assistant to a bishop after 26 years in parish ministry. On the fitness side, Kent is a certified Functional Aging Specialist and developed his own workout system available at

As a pastor who also has a keen interest in fitness, I can’t help but wonder, why are so many Christians, lay and fellow clergy alike, physically out of shape?

Wouldn’t you expect followers of Jesus to be some of the healthiest people on earth?

Here’s my theory…

I don’t think we realize that, deep down, fitness is a spiritual issue. Instead, we’ve allowed the reasoning of secular vanity to fill the void. You know, promises of living longer, fewer chances of getting a disease, promises of looking better at your high school reunion and the like.

Those reasons, while nice, are pretty vain when you think about it. And maybe that’s why they don’t have staying power even in the general population, let alone among Christians.

In other words, maybe we need a bigger “Why?” A sustainable faith-based reason to get in shape.

Let’s begin with a few spiritual questions…

  1. Do you believe that your body is ultimately a gift from God?
  2. Can you find it in your heart to thank God for the gift of your body (as it is now, even if it’s not quite the way you hoped it would be)?
  3. Would you like to demonstrate your thanksgiving by simply taking good care of the gift (your body) you’ve been given?

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About Nelson Searcy

Nelson Searcy is an experienced church planter, coach and church growth strategist, working with churches in over 45 denominations. Nelson is also the Founding and Lead Pastor of The Journey Church, with locations across New York City and in San Francisco and Boca Raton, FL. He first developed the Assimilation System 10 years ago at the Journey Church and has since implemented and improved these strategies with over 3,000 churches across all sizes and denominations. He started coaching pastors in 2006 and has personally coached over 2100+ senior pastors, helping them break common growth barriers like 125, 250, 500, 1000 and beyond, all while maintaining personal life and ministry balance. As founder of Church Leader Insights and the Renegade Pastors Network, he has trained more than 50,000 church leaders (3,000+ church planters). He is the author of over 80 church growth resources and 15+ books, including Fusion: Turning First-Time Guests Into Fully-Engaged Members of Your Church and The Renegade Pastor: Abandoning Average in Your Life and Ministry. His continued mission is to help church leaders around the world cooperate with God in creating healthy, thriving churches. Nelson is married to Kelley and together they have one son, Alexander.

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