What do you really love to do, and to what extent do you go in order to do it?
Many of us have things that we love doing, and by virtue of this fact, we all make certain preparations in order to do them. For someone who loves golf, they practice. They spend time on the driving range, and they also work on their short game. For someone who loves to play basketball, they work on their fundamentals as well as their conditioning and shooting. Anyone who loves crafting, explores the many mediums and techniques in order to find their niche.
Those who love writing, work at it also. They work not only on content, but connecting with their audience and expressing ideas clearly. For someone who loves running, they work on their endurance, strength, speed, and their aerobic health. No matter what we love to do and no matter what our pastimes may be, we all make some sort of preparations. After all, they do say that proper preparation prevents poor performance….
As I thought about the notion of how it is that we pour so much of ourselves into preparing for carnal things, the Lord said, Hey, what about the spiritual part of your lives? You know, that part of us that serves as the foundation and catalyst for EVERYTHING else that we do and undertake. As I thought about this, I said You’re right Lord, because scripture teaches us that we can do all things through Christ who strengthens us, in Philippians 4:13, and Acts 17:28 teaches us, For in Him we live, and move, and have our being…
All of a sudden the Lord led me to 1 Corinthians 9, shining a huge SPOTLIGHT on how we should approach carnal and spiritual things.
“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. 25 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. 26 Therefore I run thus: not with uncertainty. Thus I fight: not as one who beats the air. 27 But I discipline my body and bring it into subjection, lest, when I have preached to others, I myself should become disqualified…1 Corinthians 9:24-27
In this passage we see the analogy of runners undertaking a race. All of these runners have the same objective, to win the race. But guess what, there’s only one prize. There’s no second or third place, there’s only one. But that doesn’t discourage them, they continue to prepare for the race. They work on their endurance, speed, strength and aerobic health, so that they become temperate or disciplined in all things, in order to obtain a perishable crown. Isn’t that something worth highlighting. What these runners pour all of this preparation, energy, and effort into, won’t even last…
At this moment the Lord said there’s nothing wrong with us running, golfing, crafting, writing, fishing, hunting, shopping, playing basketball, or doing whatever we love, with hopes of winning or enjoying ourselves. But what He wants to encourage us in doing is pouring the same amount of preparation, energy, effort, time, and diligence into our spiritual health and well-being, as we do carnal things.
You see when we truly understand the importance of the spiritual part of who we are in Christ Jesus, and the role it plays in EVERYTHING else, including those pastimes and the things that we love to do, our perspective changes. As a matter of fact, EVERYTHING else that we attempt to do becomes easier, because we realize and we tap into the wisdom and strength of the Lord.
Here we begin to understand that we’re not just here to live life and do what we want to do, but that we’re here to live purposefully in Christ Jesus, and we’re living in order to receive an imperishable crown. Beloved, once we have accepted Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior our view on life changes.
We have HEAVEN in VIEW!
This means that we now become INTENTIONAL in running, in living our lives through Christ and through His word. As 1 Corinthians 9:26 says, we run not with uncertainty, thus we fight. We’re intentional and we’re deliberate in prayer, study, and meditation. We’re not just beating the air, and this is not just any old hobby or activity. This is a spiritual fight, where the Lord helps us to discipline ourselves, bringing our body into subjection to the spirit.
Beloved, this is shouting news because this spiritual transformation translates into spiritual discipline, which is necessary and needed in EVERYTHING else that we attempt and undertake. In other words, EVERYTHING else becomes easier, in and through Christ…
Somebody reading this message is tired, frustrated, bummed and burned out. Somebody reading this message realizes that they’ve been on the hamster wheel and they’re getting nowhere fast. Somebody reading this message realizes that their priorities are severely misplaced. Somebody reading this message realizes that they’ve put themselves first, and the Lord second, third……
Well, today is a good day because you don’t have to continue living this way. All you have to do is repent and turn to the Lord and He’ll lead and guide you in all truth. I hear Him saying to you:
“Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. 29 Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls….Matthew 11:28-29.
TODAY IS YOUR TURNAROUND DAY!