Finish What You Started

Olympics Day 9 Athletics DQBxzAdSKuEl

During the Olympic Games, athletes will participate in what are considered to be the most important athletic events of their lives. Why? They have been chosen to represent their countries, because they are considered to be the crème de la crème, the cream of the crop; the best their countries have to offer to participate in this most prestigious worldwide event. There is no larger stage for these athletes. There is enormous pressure to bring home the gold. Most athletes who participate in the Olympic games, have literally been preparing for this moment in time all of their lives! They have dreamed about it for years and years! No athlete dreams of winning silver or bronze medals. The dream was always to bring home the gold medal, to hear their countries’ anthem resounding throughout the stadium, to see their countries’ flag towering above the rest, and finally to be on the center platform, not off to either side of it. The athletes who come in second and third places are awarded silver and bronze medals. The other athletes return home defeated, deflated, devastated, and demoralized. For that matter, some who win silver or bronze medals, return home in the very same state. Years before the athletes are ever selected to participate in the Olympic Games, they live disciplined lives, are temperate in all things, endure gruelling training sessions for several hours per day, sometimes seven days per week, and they make extraordinary personal sacrifices. This is not a temporary way of being. Rather it is a lifestyle which they have chosen to live. Why? They are striving for mastery. They have their eyes on the prize, the prestigious gold medal. They are aspiring to be the very best in the world! Thousands of athletes have the same dream of bringing home gold. However, for each athletic event there can be only one gold medalist. Knowing the extremely slim odds of winning gold, athletes go to the Olympic Games, confident they will be among the elite group of athletes who will accomplish this lofty goal. Those athletes who obviously will fall short of achieving their goal of medaling, although thwarted and exhausted, will strive to cross the finish line, even in defeat. But why? They have chosen to finish what they started.

olympic-rings

Know ye not that  they which run in a race run all,  but one receiveth the prize? So run, that ye may obtain. And every man that striveth for the mastery is temperate in all things. Now they do it to obtain a corruptible crown; but we an incorruptible. (I Corinthians 9:24-25) “Apostle Paul chose this analogy, because the Corinthians were quite familiar with the Olympic Games. History tells us that the Olympic Games began in the 7th century Before Christ (BC) in Olympia Greece, and that they were held every fourth year, almost continually, for 1,200 years. During that time period, the Greeks even marked their calendars in four-year periods called Olympiads.” Paul applied this account to the Christian’s course of life, and exhorts Christians to run in like manner as runners do in a race. The stadium in which the believer runs is the world, or this present life.” I am in this Christian race to win it; 99 1/2 just won’t do! What about you? Are you in it to win it? I am running in this Christian race, that I might obtain an incorruptible crown. I want to see Jesus in peace. But he that shall endure unto the end, the same shall be saved. (Matthew 24:13) Brethren, I count not myself to have apprehended: but this one thing I do, forgetting those things which are behind, and reaching forth unto those things which are before, I press toward the mark for the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus. (Philippians 3:13-14) Runners press toward the white line or “mark.” They literally strain to cross the finish line first. Apostle Paul refers to Jesus Christ as the “mark.” In this Christian race, we are to press toward Jesus, and to look unto Him, the Author and Finisher of our faith.” The athletes discipline themselves, deny their flesh, and make great sacrifices to obtain a corruptible crown. They keep their eyes on the prize. We must keep our eyes on the prize, eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord, and not on the things of this world. Stay in the press, and never give up. Hang in there my sisters and brothers. This race gets difficult sometimes. Strive to finish what you started. Stay in the race. Henceforth there is laid up for me a crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous judge shall give me at that day: and not to me only, but unto all them also that love His appearing. (II Timothy 4:8) If you have not yet joined this Christian race, there is room at the cross and the finish line for you too. Come to Jesus. He will save you. May the Lord bless you abundantly, today and every day! 

     
Resources: BibleStudyTools.com
Scriptures: Acts 2:1-40;  Acts 3:19
Hosea chapter 6
Luke 13 Luke 16:16
( A Re–Post )

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29 comments on “Finish What You Started

  1. One of the encouragements of this passage for me has been the emphasis on ‘finishing’. We all want to finish well, but the important thing is FINISH. Thanks Paulette!

    • Amen Mike. Athletes most definitely desire to finish well. In fact, they want to finish first. Thank you for emphasizing in your comment, that as Christians, we must FINISH the race. That is absolutely the most important thing!

      God bless,

      Paulette

  2. Hi Paulette, great post even though I believe that yes FINISH-ing the race is what matters, but also the way how. Your analogy reminded me of an African Ice skater in something like the world cup or olympics many years ago. In objective terms and set of against the rest of the field he could never win anything. Well he won everyone’s heart because of it. And he finished the race! And here it comes, while others were in there for gold, silver, bronze, that was never an option for this man, yet he was send out to run HIS OWN RACE, and that is sometimes what I see in different camps. It is good to remember that coming first is not the goal, it is all about HOW we finish the race, and all about each of us running the race, with the same end goal in mind in our own best way. The Christian race is all about heart, not just at the start but also at the finish. The glory is not necessarily in coming first but in coming in the right way.

    I so like your blog.

    Love and blessings,

    John

    • Hi John,

      I really enjoyed the comment you added to this stream! You are so right! The way one finishes a race speaks volumes of their character, and their heart! Everyone cannot finish first, but everyone can certainly finish! I saw an excerpt from an Olympic race, wherein a runner tripped and came up lame. In pain and with help, the athlete finished what he started!

      Thank you for sharing the story of the African ice skater. Very profound message there!

      Love and blessings to you, as well!

      Paulette

  3. There have been things I’ve started and not finished. 😦 But not this, not this race. 🙂
    God bless you, Praising Paulette as you call out to us and cheer us on, giving us drinks of Living Water, so that we may all finish strong and sure of Him!
    love and prayers for your day!

    • Hello BlueGem,

      Your blog is another “gem”, that I am so happy to have found! You are truly a gifted poet! I love that you are using your gift to glorify Him, and to edify the body of Christ! Stay in touch. I’m looking forward to reading more of your poetry! God bless you!

      Paulette

  4. Thank you, Minister

    Very encouraging.

    “We must keep our eyes on the prize, eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord, and not on the things of this world. Stay in the press, and never give up. Hang in there my sisters and brothers. This race gets difficult sometimes. Strive to finish what you started. Stay in the race.”
    I have a needle craft project I have been working on for quite a while now. I know the completed piece will be Sylvester the Cat, because that’s what the instructions show, but right now it just looks like a bunch of stitches in no particular order.
    Our Father sees the beginning and the end as one. His blueprint for our lives is complete, even if all we see are bits and pieces. At the end of the race, it will all make sense. Thankful for the salvation that comes only from Him and the Grace that carries us in our moments of uncertainty.

    Thank you so much, Minister. The end is much nearer than we imagine. Thanks for reminding us to hang onto the One who is the beginning and the end of it all.

    Let’s continue praying for each other.

    Blessings
    ann

    • Hi Ann,

      I enjoyed your comment. You summarized the essence of the article beautifully. Thank you for that.

      I agree with you. Let’s continue praying for each other! The effectual, fervent prayer of a righteous man availeth much!

      God bless you!

  5. “In it to Win it”–Yes, Lord, YES! Amen! God bless you today, Paulette–have a much blessed weekend–love, sis Caddo

    • Amen! “I press toward the mark for the prize of the high calling of God, in Christ Jesus!” Glory to God! Thanks so much for stopping by, Caddo! You have a blessed weekend, also! 🙂 Love, Paulette

  6. Well, what shall we say to these things then? That’s the Word for the people, His people; thank God for it. May the LORD bless you in Christ.

    • Hello Josephus-Joppa,

      Thank you so much for visiting! I appreciate you sharing what the Lord laid upon your heart, in this comment stream! What a blessing! May the blessings of the Lord be upon your life, in abundance!

    • May God be glorified! Pastor Paul, I’m so glad, that the Lord spoke to you through this post! Because you were blessed, I have been blessed, as well! It’s always great to see you here! May the Lord continue to bless you, and to use you for His glory

  7. One thing stands out to me against the backdrop of everything that you’ve written above: We are to strain toward the prize which is Christ; we are to strain towards Christ. What an encouragement, what a reason to strain!

    I find the focus you’ve given to that verse so helpful because I feel like every time I’ve ever heard it, it has always been used as a means of impressing the hearer with the need to PLEASE Jesus, to walk in a manner worthy of Jesus. But, how refreshing it is for me to hear that the prize is One: Christ. If I am straining with all I have toward Him, to receive Him, the supernatural by-product will be that my life is what He desires.

    Thank you so much for writing this–God’s message got through! 🙂

    • Hello, At Home with God,

      Welcome! Thank you so much for stopping by today, and commenting! What a blessing the words you shared here have been to me! My spirit was stirred up, and I began to give God praise! I’m so glad, that the Lord spoke unto your heart! God be glorified, today! It is all about Jesus! So glad, that “God’s message got through!” The Lord be gracious and merciful unto you, in Jesus’ name!

  8. “Tremendous!”
    Hello Minister Paulette:
    This is a tremendous article and it needed in these ever-changing and challenging times. Every Christian is called finish what they started; to stay in the race. (II Timothy 4:8)

    Thanks for sharing. ~ Bishop

    • Bishop Prince,

      Thank you for the exhortation, to finish what we started! This Scripture came to mind: “Since we are surrounded by so many examples [of faith], we must get rid of everything that slows us down, especially sin that distracts us. We must run the race that lies ahead of us and never give up.” Hebrews 12:1 (God’s Word Translation) Thanks so much for sharing your thoughts! 🙂 God bless!

  9. yes lord you have give as a new mornday blessing ,,,Dot,,,,,,”””“Still, if you set your heart on God and reach out to him, If you scrub your hands of sin and refuse to entertain evil in your home, You’ll be able to face the world unashamed and keep a firm grip on life, guiltless and fearless. You’ll forget your troubles; they’ll be like old, faded photographs.” (Job 11:13-16 MSG)

    As long as you focus on someone you resent, that person controls you. You’re worrying about something he or she has already forgotten about.

    Long before psychology came along, Job said there are three steps for inner healing:

    1. Put your heart right. If you want to be emotionally healed from a hurt, you have to release the offender — whether you feel like it or not. Don’t try to get even. Forgive that person, then release him or her.

    2. Reach out to God. You need to invite Christ to come into your life and fill you with his forgiveness. Why? I don’t think you can manufacture enough forgiveness in your life to handle all the hurts you’re going to face, not only those of the past but those you’ll have between now and when you die.

    • Hi Sister Dot,

      Thank you so much for stopping by, and sharing what is on your heart, in this stream of comments! Your encouragement is appreciated. May the Lord bless you, and may heaven smile upon you, today and every day! Great is the Lord’s faithfulness unto us!

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