Run the Race to Get the Crown
A Runner’s Sacrifice
It is not about where you finish in the race but how you run the race that will count! “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 Cor 9:24-25. Paul is saying that we should run in a way to get the prize BUT the prize is NOT the trophy but the crown that will last forever!
Everyday life gives us things that are difficult and we have to choose whether or not to die to ourselves and pick up our cross to reflect that which Christ has called us to. In my case lately it has been to pull into my family and forsake what I thought was the ministry opportunity that God had for me. I am not saying that serving in this ministry was a bad thing, exactly the opposite, it was a very good thing. However He was telling me that I was to resign and focus on the relationships within my own household. You see, I was running what I thought was a good race but it was not the race God was telling me to run, it was the race “I” wanted to run. “I” was out in front and “I” wanted to stay there, but then “I” realized that my children and my husband were at the back of the pack, stumbling around while I was running ahead. God said to me, “Denise, can you see your family stumbling behind you? Stop running ahead and go back to help them.”
Like Abraham, I had carried my family out to the altar of sacrifice for the sake of a ministry and God was trying to tell me not to touch them, but I was not listening to HIS voice, I was listening to my own voice. What if Abraham had not been listening to God’s voice? What if he was asking everyone else for advice on how to interpret what God was saying instead of acting immediately on God’s call?
It was only after I began to listen and obey what HE told me to do that I began to see HIM show up in a mighty way in our family. He is not finished but many prayers have been answered. In my obedience, HE has given me new purpose and rewarded me with a new way to live, abiding in HIS glory and trusting HIM to provide. He has shown me that when I keep my eyes fixed on HIM I will not lose heart and grow weary (Hebrews 12:3).
I now am trying to live in Fret Free Friday everyday and when I spend my time adoring HIM for all that HE is and less time focusing on my situation, I develop fearless confidence in HIS promises. My desire it to run the race to win “the crown that will last forever” even if that means I come across the finish line in last place.