How To Give Your Best
How would your life change if you invested your resources in what will last forever? What if you gave a percentage of your time, skills, energy, and finance to the eternal?
How would your life be different?
The Bible says that:
- Jesus will return.
- History is moving toward a climax.
- We will spend eternity somewhere.
- Life on earth is a dress rehearsal.
- We have about 70 to 90 years (not very long vs. eternity).
2 Peter 3:11-13 (NLT) – Since everything around us is going to be destroyed like this, what holy and godly lives you should live, looking forward to the day of God and hurrying it along. On that day, he will set the heavens on fire, and the elements will melt away in the flames. But we are looking forward to the new heavens and new earth he has promised, a world filled with God’s righteousness.
How would your life change if you used more of your time, money & energy on what will last forever?
Here’s what we do, we GIVE OUR BEST!
2 Timothy 2:15 (NIV) – Do your best to present yourself to God as one approved, a workman who does not need to be ashamed and who correctly handles the word of truth.
How To Give Your Best
The Bible has three illustrations of giving your best as a farmer, an athlete, and a soldier.
2 Timothy 2:3-7 (NIV) – Endure hardship with us like a good soldier of Christ Jesus. No one serving as a soldier gets involved in civilian affairs–he wants to please his commanding officer. Similarly, if anyone competes as an athlete, he does not receive the victor’s crown unless he competes according to the rules. The hardworking farmer should be the first to receive a share of the crops. Reflect on what I am saying, for the Lord will give you insight into all this.
Giving My Best as an Athlete
I’m athletic, and I love to push myself. This year I will be completing 50 – 10k runs (I’m past the halfway point already at 26, and once I fix my MT bike, I will have a few MT Bike races and at least one 50-mile ride as well). Some days I don’t feel like training; I might be sore, tired, or feeling lazy. Nevertheless, training as an athlete has BIGGER benefits in other areas of life, and the Bible explains them to us. Check out these three life principles the Bible gives for winning in life.
1 Corinthians 9:24-27 (NASB) Do you not know that those who run in a race all run, but only one receives the prize? Run in such a way that you may win. 25Everyone who competes in the games exercises self-control in all things. They then do it to receive a perishable wreath, but we an imperishable. 26Therefore I run in such a way, as not without aim; I box in such a way, as not beating the air; 27but I discipline my body and make it my slave, so that, after I have preached to others, I myself will not be disqualified.
I must live to WIN!
A few weeks ago, a client shared with me some of his life stories; it was compelling as he shared the highs and lows of his past. Then, he made a statement that caught my attention.
“Terry, I know how to win.”
That statement caught me off guard; he is coming to me for life coaching and working on his struggle with social anxiety.
Two thoughts went through my head when we said it.
First, I have heard people tell me that they are winners. But his statement was different, “I know HOW to win.”
Second, if you know how to win, are you struggling?
We talked about what he meant by “I know HOW to win.” And he explained that during a game (and toward the end), he knew what needed to happen (at a strategic level) to win the game (even if they were losing at the time. Pushed hard, “Can you give a few examples of this?”
Without hesitation, he shared stories of being down yet able to manage the game in a way that got his team to a win.
I wanted to gid deeper, what are the principles of knowing how to win, and WHY?
Again, he shared several principles he learned through atheletic coaching and game experience that helped him win.
Finally, I asked, “what principles, if any, are transferable to your situation?”
He sat and thought for a moment, and then the light bulb appeared.
“All of them.”
Winning in life is about mindset and strategy. Look at the 1 Corinthians text again, “… run in such a way that you may win.” The word way means there is a process or strategy.
In my life coaching, I have a strategy, system, or way that helps my clients succeed in their relationships (both professional and social).
When we apply the system or strategy to our life, we start to see the WIN.
I must live a disciplined life
The second principle from the Bible is that an athlete lives a disciplined life. What’s more, Jesus and Paul both modeled this lifestyle for us.
Hebrews 12:2 (NASB) – fixing our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of faith, who for the joy set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.
2 Timothy 2:5 (NASB) – Also if anyone competes as an athlete, he does not win the prize unless he competes according to the rules.
1 Corinthians 9:25 (NASB) – Everyone who competes in the games exercises self-control in all things. They then do it to receive a perishable wreath, but we an imperishable… but I discipline my body and make it my slave, so that, after I have preached to others, I myself will not be disqualified.
There are no shortcuts to being the best. Consider some other examples of discipline:
- Getting up early regularly to train
- Practicing delayed gratification
- Embracing the pain and using it to motivate further growth and performance
I must Focus on the Vision of the Future
This past month, I competed in my first foot race in over 30 years; it was a 10k run. There were times during the run when I wanted to stop and walk. I didn’t. Instead, I returned to my memory and reminded myself that I had already run this race several times. I had to think past my pain and realize that the goal was still ahead, and I had already accomplished it.
In my training, I had already completed the same course as the race at 3x before the race. What’s more, the race only confirms that I put in the work leading up it the race. Once I remembered I had already run the course and could finish a 10k, my resolve was set to finish the race.
1 Corinthians 9:26 (NASB) – Therefore I run in such a way, as not without aim; I box in such a way, as not beating the air;
One Last Thought
God is calling you to do GREAT things for Him. He calls you to give your best in relationships, personal life, and career. To give your best, you have to train like an athlete.
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