Keep Your Eyes on the Prize
“Surely you know that many runners take part in a race, but only one of them wins the prize...” (1 Corinthians 9:24 GNT)
Our Christian walk is likened to a race in Scripture. Remember that no one gets an award for starting a race. Sadly, a lot of people start and don’t finish. Why? Well, to be a Christian you have to fight. You have to battle temptation, the devil, people mocking you, discouragement, fear, and a host of other things. But the battle goes to those who fight! The Apostle Paul exhorted, “Run, then, in such a way as to get the prize” (1 Corinthians 9:24). And in the book of Revelation, the Lord himself says through the Apostle John, “Be faithful until death, and I will give you the crown of life” (Revelation 2:10 NIV).
So how does this play out in a practical sense for someone such as you or I wanting to live out their Christian faith in victory in spite of all of the negative news from around the world about wars, rumors of wars, modern-day plagues, and every other obstacle to our faith?
To weather the storm and get through to the end, we need to maintain our joy. How? Well, first of all, we can’t get shocked, no matter what happens in us or around us. The Psalmist said, “Therefore we will not fear, though the earth give way and the mountains fall into the heart of the sea” (Psalm 46:2 NIV). With every negative newspaper headline, we have to say, “It is what it is, but Jesus is who HE is!” We also have to remind ourselves that anything we go through here on earth is not worthy to be compared to the glory that is to follow. Just think: one millisecond into eternity, we won’t even remember what we went through here, because we’re going to be so taken up with Jesus! The joy of the Lord is our strength, and this strength will carry us over the finish line in our Christian walk of faith!
Just keep your eyes on the prize, sharing Jesus with a world that is hurting and ripe unto harvest. Run with endurance the race that is set before you (Hebrews 12:1). Remember: you are not running alone. By his precious Holy Spirit, God is with you every step of the way!
Read 1 Corinthians 9:24-27 on running the race.