Spiritual Olympians

“Discipline yourself for the purpose of godliness; for bodily discipline is only of little profit, but godliness is profitable for all things, since it holds promise for the present life and also for the life to come.”  1 Timothy 4:7-8

Olyimpian athletes push themselves to extremes in order to “hopefully” win a medal.  How much more should we train, discipline and push ourselves to live boldly for God?

“Godliness” refers to a way of living.  It’s more than religious piety or beliefs, it refers to action — how the truths of God’s word are lived out in all aspects of your personal and professional life.

The word translated “discipline” means to train or exercise yourself, a concept obviously drawn from the athletic world.  We get our word “gymnasium” from this word.  God is clearly calling us to be spiritual Olympians — athletes who are extremely focused, disciplined and committed to knowing and living God’s commands.

Take note of who’s responsible for the training — you and me!  Of course, God enables and empowers us (Colossians 1:29) and apart from Him, we can do nothing (John 15:5), but He expects us to own the traning and to exert the level of focus and effort as would any athlete trying to win a gold medal.

Our world is starving for Christians who are fervently committed, zealous, even fanatical about following Christ, those who are more concerned with the things of God than the temporary things of the world. If ever there was a time for men and women to “hit the gym” for God, and come out mighty in God’s strength, it is now!

Here are a few training tips:

  1. Cling to Christ with all of your heart, mind, soul and strength. (Matthew 22:37)
  2. Stay empty of self and filled with the Spirit. (Ephesians 5:18)
  3. Feast on the Word and be a diligent student. (2 Timothy 2:15)
  4. Stay focused on the prize.  Jesus is our prize! (Philippians 3:12-14)

Let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us.  Let us fix our eyes on Jesus, the author and completer of our faith.”  (Hebrew 12:1-2)

I write this in honor and memory of the Rev. Billy Graham, a true spiritual Olympian and faithful servant of our God. He finished strong and has now received his crown of righteousness.

Jeff Wilson

No comments yet.

Leave a Reply