1 Corinthians 9:24b
In high school golf matches, players and fans get disqualified. Basketball players get disqualified from games for their actions or words. In high school basketball, you are disqualified if you have five fouls.
Sports are like life – things go wrong. Just like in our lives.
How you react makes all the difference.
What an amazing challenge it is when things go wrong. I try to run in a way to get the prize of eternal life but then I fail. So, I pull up my socks and keep going and I try to run in a way to get the prize and I get knocked down again. I fail because of my own decisions and my own lack of perfection.
It is an ongoing challenge.
The way we run and the way we fight make a difference. Do we use God’s weapons of love, patience and kindness, like Jesus Christ? Or do we use the weapons of evil and violence in this world? Either way, it can be contagious.
If we run in such a way as to get the prize, it means we are striving to do and be like Jesus. We can encourage others in our language, actions and, perhaps, motives. If we live a life of immorality, we are living to honor and please ourselves, not God.
The way we run and the way we fight make a difference in whether we have a share in the gospel (verse 23), whether we seize the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus (verse 24) and whether we gain the crown of righteousness and life (verse 25). We have to work and plan with our actions to not be disqualified from the race (verse 27).
So, persevere by never quitting through prayer and patience.
Never give up.