This morning for devotions we looked at racing. For those of you that have ever run a race, you know there is a big difference between running the race to complete it or to run the race to win it. I have run a number of races in my life, but I don’t ever remember winning any of those races. It isn’t because I didn’t train for those races, it is more because of the kind of training I did (and the lack of athleticism in my body). Paul also talks about the difference in running to complete vs. running to win. This is what he says to the Corinthians:
Do you not know that in a race all the runners run, but only one gets the prize? Run in such a way as to get the prize. Everyone who competes in the games goes into strict training. They do it to get a crown that will not last, but we do it to get a crown that will last forever. 1 Corinthians 9:24-25
This became very clear to me the last triathlon I did 4-5 years ago (I am sure Brian and Aric remember that one as well as the weather was horrible that day). The night before the race, our daughter who was probably 2-3 at the time asked me if I was going to win the race the next day. I laughed and responded that I was just hoping to finish the race since the weather was going to be bad. She looked at me like I was crazy. Her response was “why would you do the race if you aren’t going to win” (she is the most competitive person I know). There is a big difference between running the race to win and running to finish.
That was the easy part of the devotion. The hard part is creating a “training plan” to win the race of life. Thankfully, there isn’t only one winner when it comes to God. We can all be winners and earn “the crown that will last forever”. How do we go about creating a plan to win the race of life. There are a number of ways:
- Attending church
- Bible studies
- Personal devotions
- Mission trips (to Jamaica)
All of these items might work good for you or maybe it is something else. We do know though that God commands us to get off the fence and train to win. In Revelations he talks about people that are on the fence:
These are the words of the Amen, the faithful and true witness, the ruler of God’s creation. I know your deeds, that you are neither cold nor hot. I wish you were either one or the other! So, because you are lukewarm – neither hot nor cold – I am about to spit you out of my mouth. Revelations 3:14-16
These are pretty harsh words, but leaves no doubt as to what God thinks about lukewarm people. Thankfully we are surrounded by God’s grace as there is no way we can be good enough to earn our own salvation. In this Easter time, it is a great reminder that Jesus did the work for us. Our job is to spread the message and to take as many people as we can into Heaven with us!