We must keep our faith in shape

With one granddaughter, Maddie, working at a gym and 2-year-old Callie looking for a Mommy and Me gymnastics class, it brought to mind a flash from four years ago.

“Nastics.” That’s short for gymnastics. It’s what you call that really cool place that has a pool of sponges you can jump into, bars you can hang from, beams you can balance on and trampolines that will carry a 2-year-old to heights she couldn’t reach on her own.

It’s a place where roll call requires not a “here” but arms thrown up in the air with an exuberant “ta-da” to let the grown-ups know a budding gymnast is in the house.

“G,” as his granddaughter Betsy calls Cooper, and “KK,” that’s me, went to watch this miniature person have the grandest time moving from station to station at the big ol’ gym. I’ve heard it said that some little girls are born with glitter in their veins. That’s certainly true of Betsy. She shines as she moves through her moves with her fancy “nastics” outfit swaying with every beat.

Then there’s the playhouse. That’s the “nastics” gym of another 2-year-old of a different gender. This is a really cool place with swings to fly on, slides to swoosh down and rock walls to climb. It’s also the place where I can watch my grandson Jackson bring his own rendition of “Wipeout” to the table. He flips and dips and throws himself as only a 2-year-old can do all the while hollering, “Watch this!” It’s a workout, y’all.

When the taillights are leaving the drive, carrying our tired babies, that’s when I find myself laid out. It absolutely floors me, literally, when I have spent a day trying to keep up with these monkeys. Every joint and muscle speaks a squeaking reminder that I should be trying to keep in shape because there’s a lot of mileage left to living.

Yet, the only “nastics” activity I’ve been doing lately other than walking and playing with the grandkids is mental gymnastics. I have to have my daily dose of cryptoquotes, cryptographs, jumbles and crossword puzzles. The other half of my family works the more difficult suduko, but I am trying to keep the brain flexing. Not sure it’s working, but at least I’m giving it a shot. We have to have the daily dose of some sort of “nastics.”

That’ll preach. It doesn’t stop with the body, but continues with my heart and in my daily relationship with the Father. Even in scripture the Apostle Paul says “I buffet my body…” Heard a preacher say today that doesn’t mean standing in the buffet line at the restaurant.

What ever age we are we need to continue in the race, especially keeping fit in this area of our faith. The Amplified version of the Bible says it this way, “But [like a boxer] I buffet my body [handle it roughly, discipline it by hardships] and subdue it, for fear that after proclaiming to others the Gospel and things pertaining to it, I myself should become unfit [not stand the test, be unapproved and rejected as a counterfeit].”

I want to stand true, stand strong, stand secure, not only before my peers, but in front of my children and grandchildren. Strong in the “nastics” that counts for eternity, my faith.

Kandi Farris, a freelance correspondent, also is a speaker on matters of faith and values.