His name is Garrick, a second year university student, and he lives in my county. He competes as a pro in the triathlon: the Olympic distance, which entails a 1,500 meter swim, 40 kilometer bike ride and 10 km run. When I imagine any one of those things, it seems daunting, but all three seem overwhelming. His training schedule is strict. Every week he hits the pool six to seven times, cycles 10 hours and runs 60 kilometers. Now that is a lot of time, effort and discipline! How many of us have that?
In speaking about the racing and his competitors, he said, “They are not there to just finish, like in the age group races. You know you are racing someone who is also willing to bleed for the win.” Well, if I’m being honest, I’m not willing to ‘bleed’ just to win a medal or train hard enough to get big money or become famous. But I want to be willing to ‘bleed’ for my Lord. After all, He bled for me.
How many of us have such discipline in our race on this earth? “…let us lay aside every weight and the sin which so easily besets us, and let us run with patience the race that is set before us, looking to Jesus…” (Hb. 12:1,2) First off, are we willing to set everything aside to run the race? Or are we hanging on to the things of the world which weigh us down. Perhaps we’re still holding on tight to everything BUT God.
Do you not know that those running in a race all run, but one receives the prize? So run, that you may obtain. And everyone who strives for the mastery is temperate in all things. Then those truly that they may receive a corruptible crown, but we an incorruptible. So then I run, not as if I were uncertain. And so I fight, not as one who beats the air. But I buffet my body, and lead it captive, lest proclaiming to others I myself might be rejected. 1Cr. -27
A lot of time, effort and discipline. Are we ready to give it all up and discipline ourselves to the effort and time needed to truly follow Christ and do what He has called us to do? Do we want it bad enough? Are we willing to exert such effort that it causes bleeding?
Instead, we’re too busy with OUR tasks to take time to care for God’s. Our effort is all spent making money, raising families and having fun until we’re too exhausted to follow hard after Christ. For most of us, discipline isn’t even considered an option. Why is that? And we certainly don’t take the time, effort and discipline to press in to intimacy with God.
How else will we ever ‘feel God’s heartbeat' if we never press in?
How else will we finish the course if we don’t push through and press in?
How else will we win the prize?
I have fought the good fight, I have finished the course, I have kept the faith. Now there is laid up for me the crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous Judge, shall give me at that Day; and not to me only, but also to all those who love His appearing. 2Tm. 4:7,8
I keep pursuing the goal to win the prize of God's heavenly call in the Messiah Jesus. Php. 3:14 NIV