Read 1 John 2:15-17
Do not love the world or the things in the world. If anyone loves the world, the love of the Father is not in him. For all that is in the world--the desires of the flesh and the desires of the eyes and pride of life--is not from the Father but is from the world. And the world is passing away along with its desires, but whoever does the will of God abides forever.
· When life overwhelms us how can we stay in the competition?
· How can I keep my focus on God and His plan for my life?
· How can I ultimately win the prize God has for me?
The Christian journey is a lot like an Olympic competition, isn't it? We identify ourselves with Christ, we train spiritually, we discipline our hearts and our minds, and we press ahead with our "eyes on the prize"--eternity with God. At times, the competition is thrilling--and at other moments, it's downright grueling. Life gets turbulent and continuing seems too painful, too hard--utterly impossible. (Maybe we're consumed with a habit or a nagging fear or a deep-rooted insecurity.)
Here's a game plan that works: We must shift our focus from the challenge we face to the sufficiency of our Coach: Jesus Christ. Here are two important facts about faith in Christ: (1) living the Christian life is often hard, yet (2) you can make it if you choose to trust Jesus and step out with an iron-willed commitment.
Just open your Bible and read all of Hebrews 11 for a thorough understanding of what an iron-willed commitment is all about. But for a clue, check out these verses: ". . . let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles, and let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us. Let us fix our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy set before him endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God. Consider him who endured such opposition from sinful men, so that you will not grow weary and lose heart" (Hebrews 12:1-3). Jesus overcame death on the cross so that--through His power--each one of us can overcome the obstacles that stand in our way . . . no matter how hopeless the situation may seem.
Lord, please give me an iron-willed commitment to You. Show me how to move forward as I face countless struggles and setbacks. Amen.