by Judi Chow
The Olympics has come and gone. I watched athletes as they tried to make that one perfect performance for which they have been trained all their lives. Why? They’ve been told to go for the gold, to bring honor to themselves and glory to their country. No matter what event it is, one slip of the hand, one shuffle of the feet, one misalignment of the body, and one can be dropped from the gold to no medal. I watched athletes proudly gazing at their country’s flag rising as they stood erect at the winners’ stand after receiving their medals. That is the moment of honor and glory as the gold, silver, or bronze medals were awarded.
“Everyone who competes in the games goes into strict training. They do it to get a crown that will not last; but we do it to get a crown that will last forever.” (I Cor. 9:25)
Well, besides that crowning moment of honor and glory, besides the medals, besides the perishable crown, what else does the Olympic athletes hope for? Sporting goods companies signing them on to be their spokesperson, commercial contracts, interviews, ultimately fame and fortune. That’s the payoff they are hoping for from years of discipline and hard work. The shooting stars shine brightly but for a moment, after a few months how many of us will remember them?
What is the incentive for us to pursue the imperishable crown of glory that cannot be seen nor touched during this lifetime? It seems so far away, so intangible, so… dare I say, useless! I am sorry to say we are human beings who are bound by this physical world, attracted by the finer things in life, and fueled by the praise of men. That still small voice seems so distant, so faint, and so hard to hear! Yet, if we stop, pause long enough to listen… our Heavenly Father is trying to tell us something great in three simple words. “I… LOVE… YOU!” He is not far away. He is empowering us as we try to reflect His glory and tell of His love. He encourages and comforts us when we are weak and weary. He is cheering us on and ensuring us with promises such as “I will never leave you nor forsake you.”
His constant abiding is the reason for us to run in such a way so as to win that race. The material things in this world can please our senses momentarily, but only the spiritual fellowship in Christ can truly satisfy our soul! That imperishable crown will be given to us when we meet Him face to face as His way of saying, “Good job, my son, I am proud of you, my daughter.” I look forward to THAT moment of honor and glory.