This has become quite intense viewing as a family, as we watch each new video and count the press up total. (He is currently hovering around the 18/19 mark). And of course, with most things in this house, it has become an excellent teaching tool.
In life, we all like to do things that we are good at, rather than attempt things that we're not sure we can do, or we might be seen to fail at, and this is why I love these videos. They show a man humble enough to show what he technically 'can't do'
(22 press ups in one go) and we get to follow his journey of commitment, perseverance, fun, and hard work.
One of my lads didn't do too well in a Rugby match and one was nervous to join a Boxing club, as he didn't know if he'd be any good at it. He was concerned that he would be embarrassed. And one of my lads was just having a tough time with something else.
I used Pete and his push ups to teach into each one of these things. To encourage them to press on, and to explain to them that embarrassment and pride will be a real stumbling block for them in life, preventing them from doing stuff, especially from doing the right thing at times. I'm sure Pete may have wondered what people would have thought of him, and if he had stopped there...that would have been it. No perseverance, no example of humility for four self-assured boys, no 49 days of challenge, no videos for us to watch, no growth, no mental health awareness, no achievement.
What a waste. Thankfully Pete didn't do that.
God's word, is full of weak people doing great things for God. They pushed through and trusted God when it was tough, when they felt like giving up, when they discounted themselves, when they had nothing left to give, when they were too old, too young, when they tried something new, when it was too hard, when it was impossible, when they got laughed at, or worse, when they went for it, when they didn't go for it, when people were at their lowest or even their greatest. God is in the habit of using our weaknesses to show His greatness.
And the beauty of the gospel is when we realise God is our strength. He alone can get us through the battles. But the challenge is admitting we need Him and actually letting Him strengthen us.
We are looking forward to the day Pete reaches 22 press ups, we really are!! I'm sure Pete will celebrate. But we're already so proud of him. He has done loads of press ups, and the bits he thought he couldn't get through, he now does with ease. I am personally grateful that there are strong bearded men for my boys to look at, who are willing to walk in humility. We are wonderfully loved by God when we've got nothing to bring. And even though it brings Him glory, He doesn't love us any more when we do well.
He's already proud of us. And that alone should push us on to do great things.
"I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me".