Well-Aimed Efforts…

Do you not know that the runners in a race all run, but only one receives the prize? Run in such a way that you may win it. Now everyone competing in a contest exercises self-control in all things. Of course, they do it to receive a crown that can perish, but we, one that does not perish. Therefore, the way I am running is not aimlessly; the way I am aiming my blows is so as not to be striking the air;  but I pummel my body and lead it as a slave, so that after I have preached to others, I myself should not become disapproved somehow.

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Paul illustrated his single-mindedness and sharp focus in pursuing spiritual goals, saying: “The way I am directing my blows is so as not to be striking the air.”  How would a contestant direct his blows or thrusts? The book The Life of the Greeks and Romans answers: “Not only rude strength was required, but also firmness of eye in finding out an antagonist’s weak points. No less useful were certain dexterous thrusts learned at the wrestling-schools, and quickness in outwitting an antagonist.”

Our imperfect flesh is one of our antagonists. Have we identified our personal “weak points”? Are we willing to see ourselves as others see us especially as Satan might see us? That requires honest self-analysis and self-appraisal and the will to make changes. Self-deception occurs very easily.  How easy it is to justify an unwise course of action!  That is tantamount to “striking the air.”

In these last days, those who would please Jehovah and gain life cannot afford to hesitate in making the choice between right and wrong, between God’s congregation and the corrupt world. They must avoid wavering, being ‘indecisive, unsteady in all their ways.’  They should not waste their efforts on fruitless pursuits. When a person follows this straightforward, single-minded course, he will be happy and his ‘advancement will be manifest to all persons.’

Yes, the Christian race continues. Jehovah—our Grand Trainer—lovingly provides the instruction and assistance necessary for our endurance and ultimate victory.  Like athletes of old, we need to cultivate self-discipline, self-control, and single-mindedness in our fight for the faith. Our well-aimed efforts will be richly rewarded.

~ by DJ Camstar on 19/09/2016.

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