Standing at the starting line: what do you need?
Self Discipline to be exact.
As we stand at the starting line, as we begin, and continue to run this race, every Christian will need self discipline to get you to the finish line.
This may be a hard pill to swallow, but true.
A few years ago, I had to accept the fact that in order for me to really launch out into the depth of God, I needed to have discipline. I've been working on myself ever since.
That still is a work-in-progress.
But as I read self discipline christian guidance found in God's word, and other helpful aids, I can blissfully share that I am seeing progress.
So, let's face the truth:
We need consistent, continuous effort. Building momentum as we go along.
Ahhh, Paul has a way with words doesn't he? He just knows how to hit the nail right on its head. Here's what he said:
24 Know ye not that they which run in a race run all, but one receiveth the prize? So run, that ye may obtain.
25 And every man that striveth for the mastery is temperate ( showing moderation and self restraint) in all things. Now they do it to obtain a corruptible crown; but we an incorruptible.
26 I therefore so run, not as uncertainly; so fight I, not as one that beateth the air:
27 But I keep under my body, and bring it into subjection: lest that by any means, when I have preached to others, I myself should be a castaway.
Christian Self Discipline is training that is expected to produce a specific character or desired behavior, that will eventually lead you to the desired outcome of godliness, righteousness and growth. Paul used a perfect example to explain this. He called it striving for “Mastery”, which in other words is striving for:
Christian Self Discipline is constant consistent effort in the right direction.
As would any one of us, if we were striving to obtain the gold medal at the Olympics, we would have brought our bodies into subjection, exhibited restraint, spent the hours necessary, eaten a proper diet, and spent umpteen hours in practice just to obtain that prize.
If we failed during practice, we would try harder until we begin to see results and eventually achieve our goal. We would have done all this for a prize that is corruptible.
How much the more, should we exhibit the same efforts and more, for the incorruptible crown that is promised to us by Jesus Christ?
Let's take a closer look at verse 27 of this very same passage. Paul explains exactly what he practices, to make certain that he does not lose his chance to his incorruptible crown. He says that he 'keep under his body, and bring it into subjection'.
The Greek word for the term 'keep under’, is upōpiazō which literally means self discipline. So Paul said almost 2000 years ago, that the key to winning this prize is Self Discipline. Your prize today is Spiritual Growth and it will take discipline to accomplish it. It will require focus, diligence, effort and a clear direction.
What may seem at first to be discomfort, will soon become willing and enjoyable. This is an indication that your spirit man is being strengthened, and longing after more of the same.
We may stray just for a moment: when it happens, re-adjust then move on. This means we cannot stop until we see results!
And even then - there's no ceasing! On ward march we go - positivelydriveners!
I pray that this self discipline christian lesson was a blessing. Opening your eyes even further to the truth. If it was please share and leave a comment below.
Finish with the lesson?
Or go on to Lesson 2