I am trying to get my middle-aged body into some semblance of fitness. To that end, I have been going to a small, local pool where I do gentle range of motion exercises, stretching, and even swim some laps. The best time to go is earlier in the morning or later in the afternoon, since I often have the pool to myself at those times.
There have been a few times though when I have either arrived there a little later than usual or have not yet finished my exercise regime before a gaggle of gals descends upon the waters. These ladies are usually older than me, and I assume that they also come to the pool for gentle exercise. However, I have noticed a strange phenomenon: they have their bathing suits on, they get into the pool, they make intitial attempts to move through the water in some semblance of exercise activity but when they approach one another, it seems like some great magnet secures them all in tight formation in the center of the pool! And then the noise level goes up exponentially as each one of them attempts to add their pearls of wisdom to the gossip fest.
This is strange behaviour to me. I mean, you have to pay to use the pool, you have to scrunch and squeeze the various lumps and bumps of the body into a bathing suit, and then you have to try to peel said wet and tight bathing suit off of aforementioned lumps and bumps! I have to wonder why a person would go through all of that just to have a good ol’ chin wag! But what really makes my swimsuit chafe is that they are all doing this right in the center of the pool and then they bob about until they have covered all the points of the compass leaving very little room for my svelte (cough-cough) form to pass by them as I imitate a sleek dolphin doing laps.
These ladies dress the part for swimming, they go to the right place for swimming, they even enter the water as if for swimming, but if they think that they are actually getting any exercise, they are deluding themselves.
I think that there are many people who call themselves Christians who are somewhat similar to those ladies. You know, the people who may dress a certain way to impress you into thinking that they are Christians. The ones who may attend church regularly, just to be seen doing so. The ones who actually enter into the church but don’t engage with the sermon, the praying or each other. And like the women in the pool, I think that these people are deluding themselves into thinking that they are “real” Christians and that their faith is real and active.
I have met a lot of “luke-warm” Christians. People who have the appearance of Christianity on the outside but whose faith is either non- exsistent or very shallow and very easily changed by circumstances.
Rev 3:15 I know your works, that you are neither cold nor hot. I would that you were cold or hot. So because you are lukewarm, and neither cold nor hot, I will vomit you out of My mouth. Because you say, I am rich and increased with goods and have need of nothing, and do not know that you are wretched and miserable and poor and blind and naked,
I have also met people who, by the look of them, one would not think that they were Christians, but their faith is real and deep.
If you call yourself a Christian, don’t just put on a bathing suit and then paddle around in the shallow end of life and faith, chattering away the precious minutes of your life with meaningless talk. Get INTO the pool and exercise your faith with healthy, meaningful and productive activities that will strengthen your faith and help to build the faith of others.
“Swimming, swimming; keep on swimming” Dory in “Finding Nemo”