Friday, January 16, 2009

In Perfect Step

My mom has a photo of me when I was about 6 or 7 years old, in ballet class. All the little girls have their feet together and their hands in front of them clapping, except me. I have my hands on my hips and one leg out tapping my heel. I was out of step.

Fast forward ahead 30+ years and that is me in the Body & Soul fitness class. I started this class on Tuesday and was the model student. I say model, as the teacher used me as an example. She said "If you can't get the arm motions with the legs, just do what Kelly is doing and leave your hands on your hips." I just can't do the "heel, knee, kick" with my legs and do "up, down, up" with my arms at the same time.

I've not taken fitness classes in the past because the number of steps involved, and the coordination of the feet & hand motions together seemed overwhelming. I didn't want to look stupid. But with maturity comes caring less of others opinions of you (not to mention a slower metabolism) so I decided to start the class with a friend. I tried hard not to compare myself to the others who seemed more coordinated. I kept my eyes on the teacher, so I could follow her every step. Thursday was second class and amazingly I was already able to add some of the hand motions in. Soon I think my feet will be able to follow the steps without so much thought, and then I'll add all the arms. Soon, I'll be getting stronger!

As Christians, we too can be overwhelmed. Just look at one area of Christianity, the fruit of the spirit. (Galatians 5:22, 23) Love, peace, joy, patience, kindness, goodness, gentleness, faithfulness and self-control seems like too much to achieve.

But if we start with one thing at a time, it's easier. Which one of the fruit do you have? Focus on the ones you do well. Don't compare your self with others! Then as you get one down, add another until you've gotten them all. Soon you'll be stronger! In time you can add more & more "steps" of Christianity. Keep your eyes closely on the Teacher (Jesus), like I did. Then you'll be spiritually fit, and in perfect step.

Galatians 5:25 -- Since we live by the Spirit, let us keep in step with the Spirit.

Proverbs 4:12 -- When you walk, your steps will not be hampered; when you run, you will not stumble.

1 Peter 2:21 -- To this you were called, because Christ suffered for you, leaving you an example, that you should follow in his steps.

Chatty Kelly


Melanie said...

Great one, Kelly!
Sometimes in choir, when the director wants us to sing,sway and clap, I have to give up on clapping.
Too many things to focus on! Skiing...yes. The clap with the sway...not so much.

2nd Cup of Coffee said...

I loved this. And I can so relate because I'm step-challenged. I can do arm motions, but the feet tangle me up. Once an instructor said, I can always tell who the cheerleaders were because their arms are all over the place. That would be me. Your analogy seems very Christ-like because he says his yoke is easy and his burden is light. That means so much as continually seek to improve without the burden of a hard task master driving us into the ground for failure. Thanks, Kelly.

Sue J. said...

Focusing on the teacher--and not others--is so important, but so hard for us. I'm sure it felt bad to be pointed out for awkwardness, and yet your teacher saw a way to make others who were struggling more comfortable, because you chose to keep on and do what you could (with something brand new, let's emphasize!!)

Glad to hear session 2 was a step in the right direction, in more ways than one ;-)

Beverlydru said...

I love this picture. I think we can all relate! I'm not very coordinated either. If I'm ever called Grace it'll be a spiritual connotation, not physical. But the difficult does become easy with practice and persistence.

B His Girl said...

How fun Kelly! Obviously you are learning quickly. I think it's great you took the class knowing it would be a challenge since you have not been active in dance. Your analogy is so true. When we step out with God, we find we can do more than we thought, grow in areas that seemed almost impossible. Keep stepping out in faith and God will make all of His purposes for your life come together.

Anonymous said...

nice post!! I was thinking maybe you were the only one doing it right when you we in ballet.


KelliGirl said...

Oh, Kelly, I can relate to this. I can handle a step class, but once the arms and legs have to operate independently I'm a goner! Enjoy the class!

I've been away for a bit and it was great to catch up on some of your recent posts. Your post on thankfulness was wonderful! And as a mom, I certainly could relate.


Mrs. Sidney said...

Wow, this is an amazing post and really hit me right today!! I have been struggling with the fruits of the spirit for sometimes and I think I have been doing them all half fast instead of getting own down good and then moving towards another.. I like this post a lot!!


The Patterson 5 said...

I love your encouragement to keep our eyes on the teacher, Jesus! Thanks for helping us all get in step!

My ADHD Me said...

ET and I must think alike.

Actually (because I am a wee bit older than you are) I remember your mother (ok, our mother) saying that she showed the teacher the picture and the teacher said, "Knowing Kelly, she was the only one that WAS in step".

The Patterson 5 said...

I've picture tagged you!

Mary Moss said...

What a great analogy! I'm not gifted in the coordination area either, so I can definitely relate:-)

Truth4thejourney said...

So much truth in this! When we begin to compare ourselves with others - we will get into trouble! Looking to Jesus is our only option. :)


Becoming Me said...

I loved this (I know I type that comment every time I come here but it is true). I am sooooo uncoordinated. I cannot tell you how many times I have fallen down during an exercise class or have been used as an example or worse---had the teacher step out of her area to come to me and try to help. Yet, I love the community aspect of the class and find it a great motivator. So is similar in our Christian walk as we are meant not to go it alone. And we can take one step at a time like you wrote here!

Edie said...

I enjoyed this Kelly.

"Galatians 5:25 -- Since we live by the Spirit, let us keep in step with the Spirit."
This SO sums up what I was praying this morning. I am having a terrible time keeping my focus lately and don't feel "in step" at all.

Love what ET said. LOL!

Shabby Olde Potting Shed said...

How great you're taking this class; wish I could go with you! In a class like this, I'm the one standing on the backrow... so no one sees how OUT OF STEP I am. lol ~~ I relate too...
Keeping eyes on the teacher is all that really matters.

Susan said...

Oh yes, this can be so tough. I have found that it's best just to keep facing the instructor and try to tune out everything else.

Marla said...

Long ago I was working out to some exercise tapes. I would make my kids and husband go to their rooms. I didn't want anyone to see me. They would do one thing and I would do, I guess my own thing. I just couldn't follow along. I am trying so hard to focus on the Lord. I fall short sometime, but I keep on trying.