JOHN SHIRK – Today’s Moment Of Celebration reflects on the prize of a champion.
The Apostle Paul occasionally referred to the ancient Olympic games and compared them to the Christian life.
He said in First Corinthians 9:25, “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. Therefore, I do not run like a man running aimlessly; I do not fight like a man beating the air. No, I beat my body and make it my slave so that after I have preached to others, I myself will not be disqualified for the prize.”
Just as an Olympic athlete competes to the best of their ability for the gold medal, so the Apostle Paul is saying that he wanted to serve Jesus in a way that represented His great name. Such a mission has meaningful purpose, with eternal impact.
The crowning honor of an Olympic athlete is to stand at the platform, with the gold medal, representing their country while their national anthem plays. The crowning honor of Christ’s followers is to hear our Master say “Well done, good and faithful servant.” That is the applause of heaven in response to our faithful service for the glory of our King.
The prize of God’s applause is a reason to be glad in the Year of Celebration.