Tuesday, November 17, 2009 In It to Win It
But none of these things move me; nor do I count my life dear to myself, so that I may finish my race with joy, and the ministry which I received from the Lord Jesus, to testify to the gospel of the grace of God.
The analogy of running was one the apostle Paul favored in his writings. He often compared the believer to a runner in a race. For example, he wrote that we need to run in the race of life to win: "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" (1 Corinthians 9:24).
When I participate in a competitive sport, I always try to win. That doesn't mean I do. In fact, it seems like I lose most of the time. But at least I try, and I enjoy the competition. And when we are in the race of life, we need to run to win. When we watch athletes compete in the Olympics, we primarily celebrate those who win the gold. In the same way, we need to run the race to win—not to get second or third or fourth place or an honorable mention.
But in running to win, we also need to understand who our competitors are. I am not competing with you. I am not trying to beat you in the race of life. You are not trying to beat me. Our real enemies—our competitors, if you will—are the world, the flesh, and the devil (see 1 John 2:16). That is what we are trying to overcome.
I have my lane that I'm running in, which is the life that I have to live and the challenges that I have to face. And my job is to complete my race. You have your lane as well, with your unique challenges and goals.
But ultimately we all have the same goal of running for God and honoring and glorifying Him. And we must run to win.
Copyright © 2009 by Harvest Ministries. All rights reserved.
Scripture taken from the New King James Version. Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc. Used by permission. All rights reserved.
- This life will have its sorrows
- God loves us
- Jesus weeps in our times of pain
- God can be glorified through human suffering
Hope for Hurting Hearts, Pastor Greg Laurie's new book, examines these truths, revealing God's love and care for us, and shows how we can find hope, even in the midst of the most unbearable pain and sorrow.