Press On Toward the Prize

I press on toward the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus. Philippians 3: 14

We all do love to be a winner, don’t we? No matter how small the prize, we like knowing we can win at something! And sometimes, we don’t even actually have to win;  it can just be the  “idea”  or thought of winning which can make us smile!

We just returned from the practice round of the US Open in Pinehurst and Bob had his picture taken in front of the 2014 trophy. He posted it on Facebook with these words: “Never thought I would hold the US Open Trophy! I think my game is coming around!”  

You wouldn’t believe how many likes and comments he has gotten from fellow golfers and friends who could relate to his excitement! At some point, I’m sure we’ve all had the thought, “I wish I could be, or could have been, a  great ______. ”   How easy it is to fill in the blank!

We have read and seen stories about the determination and discipline it has taken for many successful and well-known individuals to become who they are. For many, it meant a lifetime of sacrifice and hard work. They had to stay focused on their goal and not let anything steer them off course. Many admit that they had to seek God’s guidance and strength as they faced challenges and obstacles in their path, and it wasn’t always easy to find their way.

It seems some individuals have been destined for “bigger things” more than others, but we can all strive to be the best we can be wherever we find ourselves in life. We’ve had our goals and our dreams, and some have accomplished “great things” – maybe not in terms of being a golf champion or a famous musician, but in terms of being a wonderful parent, teacher, coach, neighbor, co-worker, friend, or whatever field you have made contributions to people’s lives. Many of you have done wonderful things as servants of Christ who have shared His love with others. We can each feel as if we have made a difference in someone’s life in some way.

As Christians, we have another goal. We have all been called to a lifelong goal of being the best we can be for God. We know it will take much faith, humility, commitment, motivation, and perseverance. And with much hope of what lies ahead, we will “press on” as we seek to know Him more and learn to trust in His care. We will strive to have a life filled with devotion to Jesus Christ and loving others.

As we face challenges and painful situations, we may want to give up, but hopefully,we know that with His strength and the assurance of His grace, we can “press onward”. As we trust Him more, we will experience His loving presence, peace, and joy. And when we can finally walk boldly with Him, we will have the confidence of knowing that nothing can ever separate us from His love and grace, and that a far greater “prize” awaits us – the gift of eternal life with Him.

Prayer

Dear God, our Creator and Sustainer of life, we thank you for loving us and calling us your own. May we love, honor, and glorify your most holy name as we strive to be the individuals you would have us be. We thank you for the gift of life and the promise of eternal life to come. Amen

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