I’m not an athlete, never have been. In fact you can say I’m not much of a sports fan except on occasion. However once every four years I become a total fanatic about the world of sports when the Olympics come around. I love the fact that each country sends out its best to represent them at these games.
I enjoy hearing the life stories of my favorites at the Olympics. Knowing the time, effort and sacrifice that enabled them to reach to the moment where they become Olympians makes me to a small degree understand how devastating a loss is and how victory can make all the sacrifices seem worthwhile.
The Olympics is a place where dreams become reality for some and come crashing down for others. It’s the place where the favorite doesn’t always win and the most unexpected sometimes happen. As I watch, I applaud, celebrate and commiserate with those who participate in these games. I admire their dedication but most of all I am inspired by their passion.
Win, lose or draw these athletes put their all into their training to become the best at what they do, to represent their country, to maybe stand on a podium and see their country’s flag raised as their national anthem is played.
I wonder how all that passion would play out in the body of Christ. What would be the results if we were that passionate and disciplined about living out our faith? What if bible study and quiet time with God was a priority whether we felt like it or not? What if we were passionate about witnessing to unbelievers? What if we made a practice of loving and building up our brothers and sisters in Christ even when they seemed unlovable?
The ultimate goal of the athletes at the Olympics is to win a gold medal. As Christians we too have an ultimate goal. Our goal should be to know Christ, to live for Him.
I love how the apostle Paul puts it in Philippians 3:10,13-14 (NLV)
10 I want to know Him. I want to have the same power in my life that raised Jesus from the dead. I want to understand and have a share in His sufferings and be like Christ in His death.
13 … I forget everything that is behind me and look forward to that which is ahead of me. 14 My eyes are on the crown. I want to win the race and get the crown of God’s call from heaven through Christ Jesus.
Maybe just for this Olympic season we can look at heaven as the ultimate Olympics. Our training is simply doing those things that we know are pleasing to God and being disciplined about doing it whether we feel like it or not. The good thing about it though is the fact that if heaven really was the ultimate Olympics we can all win the gold. We can all win the race and get the crown of God’s call from heaven through Christ Jesus. While I’m not much of an athlete, with an incentive like failure not being an option why wouldn’t I want to compete?
- Go Jesus!