Soul Food

by Brian Weber

Who needs mountains anyway? For the typical average guy, isn’t a hiking trip a costly diversion? 

For the guy looking for an efficient workout, a mountain adventure is too dangerous, difficult, and time-consuming. The mercenary modern man chooses the gym where he has many options—elliptical, treadmill, stair climber, spin cycle, or the latest fitness fad fresh out of the box. He can watch TV, be entertained or informed, and do his sweating in air-conditioned comfort. Morning, noon, or night. Now that’s ruthless efficiency, the most bang for his bodybuilding buck. Fitness, the American way, is all about the numbers—steps, flights, heart rate, calories, elevation gain. It has nothing to do with the soul. 

Man is a unique fusion of a temporal body and an eternal soul. Doesn’t it make sense that the soul, the everlasting part, should get a bit more attention? The mountaintop experience is food for the soul, as different from the gym routine as genuine is to artificial, organic is to manmade, and as divine is to human.

Sure, a mountain hike may be good for fellowship, but can’t a guy get that at the game, or at the corner sports bar with satellite coverage of a thousand games, and beer and burgers to boot? To a guy hungry for fellowship, angel’s wings can no way compete with famous buffalo wings.

How is reaching the summit of some remote hill worth more than climbing to the top of his fantasy football pool? Where’s the payoff in the mountain hike?  Show me the money.

The gym and the sports bar are not bad places, but the point of a man’s life is not building a Zeus-like physique and mindless hanging with your pals. What moth and rust don’t tear down, the sands of time and Twinkies all too soon ruin. A man’s life is about his becoming more like the man most worth emulating, the God-man, and doing more of the things Jesus did.

Until a man rethinks his outlook on life, I won’t win many debates arguing that the typical average guy should be more concerned with the soul than the body. Devote more of his time and energy to the unseen versus the seen, the divine than the worldly.

Until his appetite changes, his diet will remain the same.

Forget about spiritual fitness. Let’s get physical.

Forget about prayer. It’s lunchtime.

Forget about worship. It’s game time.     

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