The Battle in the Race
Now Think On This
“Hold firmly to the word of life; then, on the day of Christ's return, I will be proud that I did not run the race in vain and that my work was not useless.” (Philippians 2:16-17)
Holy Bible, New Living Translation ®, copyright © 1996, 2004 by Tyndale Charitable Trust. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers. All rights reserved.)
Memorial Day in the United States of America is a special day we annually set aside to honor the fallen – those men and women who sacrificially gave their lives to keep freedom free in our nation, and for the many other nations that we have stood with over these many decades. They chose (or were drafted) to join the fight in war. They ran to the front lines, armed with weapons for battle, to keep evil from further encroaching on European, Southeast Asia, and Middle Eastern lands. And to take back that which was stolen by the enemy of our souls, Satan himself.
These tremendous engagements on the battlefield took months of preparation for those men and women, prior to the vicious entanglements. They didn’t win without a tough fight. For millions, that fight cost them their lives.
We give thanks with a big “Thank you!” to all men and women who have served in the Armed Forces - the Army, Navy, Air Force, Marines and the Coast Guard!
The Bugler Boy and the flags of the US Armed Forces
Crown Memorial Park cemetery in Pineville (Charlotte) North Carolina
(Photo by Steve Martin, May 27, 2017
Many of us enjoy attending sporting events. We have a local or national team that we give our money, time and sometimes hoarse voices to in cheering them on. Though in no way would I ever compare them to paying the same price it dearly costs our soldiers in the USA Armed Forces, they too have been prepared to meet on the field of “battle”. For that I too commend them.
I too loved playing high school baseball, for the teamwork we had, and the discipline required to go onto the Iowa State Finals in 1972. Lessons learned for life.
Columbus High School baseball teams 1972-1973
(Part of the Waterloo/Cedar Falls Roman Catholic education system)
It takes discipline to excel. It takes daily commitment to do, to be prepared to run the race and win the game, each a battle in itself, and later the hard-fought, victorious championship, or world war.
As Paul says in Hebrews 12:1-3,
“Do you see what this means — all these pioneers who blazed the way, all these veterans cheering us on? It means we'd better get on with it. Strip down, start running — and never quit! No extra spiritual fat, no parasitic sins.
Keep your eyes on Jesus, who both began and finished this race we're in. Study how he did it. Because he never lost sight of where he was headed — that exhilarating finish in and with God — he could put up with anything along the way: cross, shame, whatever. And now he's there, in the place of honor, right alongside God.
When you find yourselves flagging in your faith, go over that story again, item by item, that long litany of hostility he plowed through. That will shoot adrenaline into your souls! (”THE MESSAGE)
To be ready for the life struggles that we all do face today, and will face tomorrow, we must be ready. We must be armed. We must put on the full armor the Lord has provided, or else we won’t make it. The one who hates, steals, kills and seeks daily to destroy our souls doesn’t play fair. We must be prepared.
“Use all the armor and weaponry that God provides, so that you will be able to stand against the deceptive tactics of the Adversary. For we are not struggling against human beings, but against the rulers, authorities and cosmic powers governing this darkness, against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realm.
So take up every piece of war equipment God provides; so that when the evil day comes, you will be able to resist; and when the battle is won, you will still be standing.
Therefore, stand! Have the belt of truth buckled around your waist, put on righteousness for a breastplate, and wear on your feet the readiness that comes from the Good News of shalom.
Always carry the shield of trust, with which you will be able to extinguish all the flaming arrows of the Evil One. And take the helmet of deliverance; along with the sword given by the Spirit, that is, the Word of God; as you pray at all times, with all kinds of prayers and requests, in the Spirit, vigilantly and persistently, for all God’s people.”
(Ephesians 6:11-18, Complete Jewish Bible)
Jesus did not promise us a rose garden - without a fight. It takes a willing spirit to say, “Here I am. Do in me what needs to be done, so I can do what I have been created to do.”
Can you say that? Can you pray that if you can’t say that now? The Holy Spirit is our Helper. Ask Him.
Be prepared. Get ready. The fight has been going on for centuries, ever since the time of Adam and Eve in the garden.
If you are weary from it now, Jesus can refresh you. His heart is to make yours strong, to walk in your purpose and what you have been created to do.
If you need more training - discipline yourself in prayer, read His instruction book we call the Bible, and stand with those who have the same kindred spirit to hear and obey.
Then run the race set before you - to win., Let your life be counted among those who, with Jesus Christ at the Marriage Supper of the victorious Lamb of God - will together celebrate His glorious victory over death and destruction. It will be worth whatever cost He asks us to pay.
There is no other life worth living, than the one He has chosen and called you to live.
He is the Lion of the Tribe of Judah, the Awesome God, the Savior of the world - for both the Jew and Gentile -Yeshua HaMashiach Himself.
Now think on this,
Love For His People, Inc.
P.S. I would be most grateful if you'd share this encouraging word with your family and friends. They might need it. You can easily use the social media icons below. Thanks! Steve
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Now Think On This - In the Year of our Lord 05.29.17 - #286 – “The Battle in the Race” – Monday, 7 am - Memorial Day 2017
All previous editions of Now Think On This can be found on this Blog, and on the website: Now Think On This
Again, I would be most grateful if you'd share this encouraging word with your family and friends. You can easily use the social media icons below. Thanks! Steve