Strong arms. That was my first fitness goal. I wish I could pass it off as a godly endeavor. But, it was pure vanity. I was 50 years old, leading worship at my church, and I did not want my arms to jiggle when I held a microphone. Nine years later, my arms are a prominent feature of my physique, and it’s no longer about looking good; it’s about being strong. A strong upper body is essential to overall fitness and has benefits that extend outside of the gym. The Proverbs 31 Woman comes to mind, and I’m especially fond of verse 17:
She sets about her work vigorously;
her arms are strong for her tasks.
Her arms are strong for her tasks.
Strong arms have practical applications. What tasks do you have to accomplish? Is there a toddler to lift, groceries to bring inside, or an elderly parent needing assistance? May your arms be strong for the task. Strengthening your arms can help improve your posture, give you confidence for everyday tasks, and help decrease age-related atrophy.
The Proverbs 31 woman did what she could to make herself strong. She was ready for any and all tasks God had for her to do. To be strong, we have to put in the work to get there. But, a part of the work is rest and recovery. Are you strong enough to admit you need a break? It doesn’t mean giving up; it means stepping back for a weekend, a day, or even an hour. Our bodies are a temple designed by God. And temples are a place of honor and not strife.
May your arms reach upwards in praise. May they be strong enough to wrap your loved ones in prayer. And may you find moments of respite and gain strength in the strong arms of our Lord.
Are your arms strong enough for your tasks? Think about all the times you use your arms throughout the day. Ask God to strengthen you for each task.
Holy Father, You alone are the giver of strength. Please infuse us with the power of Your love, mercy, and grace. May our arms be used for Your glory. May we grow stronger in Your strength. Make us fit for Your service. In Jesus’ name, Amen.