Everything Has It’s Time
1 Corinthians 9:25-26
All athletes are disciplined in their training. They do it to win a prize that will fade away, but we do it for an eternal prize.
So I run with purpose in every step. I am not just shadowboxing.
Sometimes, when we see the analogies that Paul uses in his writing, you get to see how much work believers need to do to take the gospel message to those who haven’t heard it before…once, he used soldiers in an analogy to represent how disciplined a believer must be (look-up 2 Timothy 2:3). In our key scripture however, he uses an athlete for this analogy, and through this analogy, he explains something really critical for a believers spiritual growth.
Verse 25 says all athletes are disciplined in their training. In the King James version, it says an athlete must be temperate in all things (paraphrased). Being temperate means not being over indulged. Truth is in life in general, you cannot accomplish mastery in any art if you do not become disciplined…there’ll be need for more training, for sacrifices and for patience. That’s what being temperate means. You can’t do what everyone else is doing if you want to become a master at anything, you can’t sleep when everyone sleeps, or eat when everyone eats, you’ll just need to be temperate.
In the same way, if you need to grow spiritually, you’ll need to be temperate, make some sacrifices and deliberately desire and make effort to grow. Verse 26 also reveals something, we need to have purpose in our growth, why are we growing? what’s our motivation to grow. Well growth is a labour of love. While you do the work of ministry, in preaching and teaching the gospel, you need to grow in order to make greater and better impact. So we are not foolish folks, we know what we are doing when we spend time growing, we have Gods love flowing through us to reach out to those around us, we are not “shadow boxing”, we find purpose in it. Also spiritual growth in many ways also benefits those who are growing.
However, sometimes, it’s not always going to be convenient, and Paul knew this;
2 Timothy 4:2 – Preach the word of God. Be prepared, whether the time is favorable or not. Patiently correct, rebuke, and encourage your people with good teaching.
Even when it’s not Convenient, we should keep on striving for mastery, that’s what being temperate entails. Don’t be lazy, keep on growing, and keep on spreading the gospel;
Roman’s 12:11 – Never be lazy, but work hard and serve the Lord enthusiastically.
Lord teach me to be temperate in all things and to grow daily in my knowledge of the truth
Author – Gem