“For we know that the law is spiritual; but I am made out of flesh, sold into sin’s power” (Rom. 7:14).
“For if you live according to the flesh, you are going to die. But if by the Spirit you put to death the deeds of the body, you will live. All those led by God’s Spirit are God’s sons” (Rom. 8:13-14).
Cody Bobay said the heart of his message is using fitness as a tool for increasing productivity to finish strong with the mission God has given to His followers. This is why he spent five and a half years to write his book SOULCON CHALLENGE, which has generated groups of Christian men to not only meet goals of physical health but also improve their spiritual walk and be stronger Christian leaders.
But Bobay understands there is more to the challenge than eating and exercise regiments. It also involves changing viewpoints from a secular mindset to a Christian mindset.
“SOULCON teaches men what it means to walk with your mind, will and emotions—your soul—in control by the Holy Spirit in a moment-by-moment basis of your life and not (controlled by) the appetites of lust, the desires of your flesh,” Bobay said.
Just in a short amount of time, different men’s groups have been involved in the SOULCON CHALLENGE as a discipleship program and have seen great results. Bobay said he heard one guy involved in one of these groups went from weighing 380 to 312. And there are groups meeting all over the country, including Hawaii and Wisconsin.
While he was serving in the Navy, Bobay got involved in fitness training, and he saw a different priority of why men in the military were working out.
“I saw this passion for fitness to not be about six-pack abs or how they look in the mirror,” he said. “I don’t want to help guys get ‘ripped.’ I want to help them understand when they exercise, it’s training, just like when you go into Special Forces. They would never train for their reflection in the mirror. They would train to make sure their blood pressure was low so that when they got in the most stressful situations, they would control their blood pressure and could handle the ultra-stressful conditions of their military assignments.”
Bobay said God took him on a journey to further realize how Christians have different priorities than their natural emotions and thoughts.
“I started to realize that Christians have a brand new identity,” he said. “We are completely new. But our brain is still the same. So I started to study what is the flesh and what is the spirit. What does that new birth process look like? Christians need to live by the leading of the Holy Spirit and not what their brains tell them about their past or their feelings of their past.”
After being on this journey, Bobay developed a passion for men’s ministry, and he desired to be involved in encouraging other Christian men in being strong in their faith. He understood what Paul shared in Rom. 7 about struggling with the flesh. He referenced his friend Kenyatta Wright, who played seven years in the NFL.
“(Wright) never expected to play a perfect game, ever,” said Bobay. “That’s why they had game film on Monday. But his intentions before the game were to never make a mistake. He always had a perfect effort to start the game but with the understanding he’s not going to have a perfect game.”
Bobay said this is part of what Jesus meant in Luke 9:23 of taking up the cross daily, getting men to deny themselves.
“Are we picking up our cross daily? Our culture is pressing men daily to not take up our cross,” he said. “We are supposed to be passive, just let things happen. We’re supposed to just love and accept people just as they are and not show them the Gospel. So instead, let’s pick up our cross which is the greatest symbol of victory and hope this world has ever seen, while also being the most offensive symbol this world has ever seen.”
Bobay plans to speak on daily cross bearing as one of the keynote speakers during this year’s Men’s Rewired at Falls Creek Baptist Conference Center, April 29-30.
“I believe Cody is part of the next generation of leaders,” said Keith Burkhart, family & men’s ministry specialist for the Baptist General Convention of Oklahoma and program director for Men’s Rewired. “I believe SOULCON is going to be a great men’s discipleship piece that helps men not only physically, but also spiritually to walk as a band of brothers with advancing the Kingdom mindset.”
Burkhart said bringing on Bobay as a keynote speaker is helping address another issue that Christian men are struggling with today.
“I believed as we previously addressed pornography, biblical manhood (at previous Men’s Rewired weekends), and not only being spiritually fit but also physically fit is something we will cover this year as far as dealing with the whole mind, body and spirit,” Burkhart said. “Are we leading well, not only with our families? Are we leading well spiritually; are we leading by example in taking care of the bodies God has given us?”
Bobay will also be discussing his book and will meet with those at Men’s Rewired who are interested in getting a men’s group started in doing the SOULCON CHALLENGE.
Visit www.mensrewired.com to register or for more information on the weekend event.