“Enlarge the place of your tent, stretch your tent curtains wide, do not hold back; lengthen your cords, strengthen your stakes. For you will spread out to the right and the left; your descendants will dispossess nations and settle into desolate cities.” Isaiah 54:2-4 (NIV)
Recently, I’ve started teaching some stretching classes again. It’s such a good practice to get into — the intentional stretching and lengthening of muscles. One of the things I remind the women in my class is the truth that we lose flexibility as we age … & as we lose flexibility, we lose mobility. Our joints are restricted from their normal maximum range of motion because the surrounding muscles are too tight to allow such motion. So by losing flexibility and then mobility, we become less able to respond to the demands life puts on us. To the extent I can help it, I don’t want that to happen to my body.
And I don’t want that to happen my soul either. Our souls can also become inflexible. We can get too comfortable, too stiff, or too brittle to respond to God’s call on our lives. We can refuse to lengthen and stretch and grow … & by doing so, we can impede God’s work not only in our lives but also through our lives to the world and others around us.
Just as I tell the women in my stretch class that it takes time and repetition to stretch tight muscle groups, I am reminded it also takes time and repeated intentionality to open up & allow God to do new things in me and through me. Just as it takes practice for muscle memory to develop and for muscles to expand, so it takes spiritual practices to allow God to stretch us in new ways and to new heights.
God has a wonderful plan for our lives. He has great things He is going to accomplish, and He wants to use us to do it! May we stay malleable and flexible enough to always respond to Him!