by John Bevere of Messenger International
This is originally posted in here.
Run [your race] in such a way that you may seize the prize and make it yours!
1 Corinthians 9:24 AMP
You and I are in a challenging race. As the passage above reveals, the race is personal. It’s your race. It’s my race. We’re persevering to complete our individual callings in Christ. But our competition is not with each other. We are opposed by forces that do not want us to receive the eternal reward waiting for us at the finish line.
An athlete’s motivation in training is their vision for the number one prize—whether it’s a title or a gold medal. Our race ends with something much greater, but not without a fight. As we struggle with daily battles, we will only remain motivated when we know what we’re competing for:
God is building a home. He’s using us all—irrespective of how we got
here—in what he is building. He used the apostles and prophets for the
foundation. Now he’s using you, fitting you in brick by brick, stone by
stone, with Christ Jesus as the cornerstone that holds all the parts
together. We see it taking shape day after day—a holy temple built by
God, all of us built into it, a temple in which God is quite at home.
Ephesians 2:19–22 MSG
God is eagerly anticipating this house He calls Zion. How exciting that He created us to be a part of it! When we finish the race well by fulfilling our personal commission from God, our reward is to dwell in His house. There is no place in the entire universe better than by God’s side, beholding His greatness and hearing His wisdom.
We may wonder how our calling can possibly contribute to building God’s home. I know it can be difficult to wrap our minds around the concept of a house we cannot yet see. Our contribution will make complete sense someday when God’s house is completed and, together with Him, we enjoy His presence there for all of eternity.
But know this: We will not be rewarded if we are consumed by our everyday affairs in this short life, focusing on work that is out of line with God’s Word. As a believer in Christ we will enter heaven, but there will be no lasting reward for us in Zion.
Maybe you aren’t an athlete. You may have never trained a day in your life. But that doesn’t disqualify you from finishing your race strong. You were created to receive your reward at the finish line, but this requires relentless persistence and endurance—both of which must be fueled by vision and motivation.
The call on our lives sets our vision into motion. The motivation of spending eternity in Zion with Jesus is what keeps us running with purpose in every stride. I pray that by seeking God daily and diligently, we receive clear vision so that we may finish the race well.
John Bevere and his wife Lisa are the founders of Messenger International. A minister and best-selling author, John delivers messages of uncompromising truth with boldness and passion. His desire is to support the local church and resource leaders regardless of location, language, or financial position. To this end, his resources have been translated into over 90 languages, and millions of copies have been given away to pastors and leaders worldwide. When he’s home, John tries to convince Lisa to take up golf and spends time with his four sons, daughter-in-law, and grandbabies.