“Do you not know that those who run in a race all run, but one receives the prize? Run in such a way that you may obtain it. And everyone who competes for the prize is temperate in all things. Now they do it to obtain a perishable crown, but we for an imperishable crown. Therefore I run thus: not with uncertainty. Thus I fight: not as one who beats the air. But I discipline my body and bring it into subjection, lest, when I have preached to others, I myself should become disqualified.”
I Corinthians 9:24-27 NKJV
There is no cruising in the race of faith. I love watching track and field, especially the sprints. Watching young men and women, in the peak of fitness, pushing their bodies all out for 100 meters is nothing short of spectacular. Every now and then, the runner in the lead will let his or her pride get the best of them, as they pause and look around. In that moment, the runner behind, stretches ahead and wins the race.
In the fight of faith, there is a potential for saints to back off, to be satisfied with their walk. They press the pause button, and decide that it is time to rest on their laurels, leaving the pursuit of the faith to others.
We who are in the beloved, those saved by the blood of Jesus on the cross, and reborn through His resurrection, are in a race that must be won. It is not a race for our salvation, but a race for the souls of others.
In that pressing on, the Lord refines me, and prepares me for His service. In the waning season of my occupation of this earthly vessel, drawing closer to Jesus is all I desire.
“Not that I have already attained, or am already perfected; but I press on, that I may lay hold of that for which Christ Jesus has also laid hold of me. Brethren, I do not count myself to have apprehended; but one thing I do, forgetting those things which are behind and reaching forward to those things which are ahead, I press toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus.”
Philippians 3:12-14 NKJV
The effort to be holy, to battle the desires of my flesh, is not for some form of vanity, or piety, but for a purpose. The Lord has given each of us a testimony to take to those who do not yet believe, that we be on display, masterpieces of the great artist that is God. You were not saved to sit, and relax, but to draw people to Jesus.
“For by grace you have been saved through faith, and that not of yourselves; it is the gift of God, For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand that we should walk in them.”
Ephesians 2:8, 10 NKJV
Brothers and sisters, let us focus on the work the Lord has set before us. Let us be diligent to guard ourselves from sin. The evil one is lurking about seeking to devour testimonies, to consume the witness of the saints, that we not be able to reach those who need Jesus.
We who are saved, have a destiny in heaven, but this is not a reason to be lax, but excited, as we have been saved to lead the lost to salvation. The evidences of the destruction of sin are evident everywhere now, as lives are falling apart all around us.
We are not running this race for ourselves, but for those who are in the gallery, watching, deciding between heaven and hell.
“I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith. Finally, there is laid up for me the crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous Judge, will give to me on that Day, and not to me only but also to all who have loved His appearing.”
II Timothy 4:7-8 NKJV
THE PRAYER CHAIR IS OPEN! Send me your requests!