Too tired to begin?
Following up on the topic of “death” from Phillipians 2:
Ever walked outside and figured the snow was already too deep – might as well not even start shoveling?
Ever stepped off the scale and decided your weight was already so far over the edge of healthy that you might as well eat a few more doughnuts and reconsider another day?
Ever walked into the kitchen, dishes scattered everywhere, and just tossed your dirty bowl on the pile because the task was too great to begin washing them?
Here’s the difference between the guy who does nothing and rationalizes his inactivity versus the guy who rolls up his sleeves, turns the page, tightens his belt or starts shoveling… it really comes down to one honest question and an honest answer: Do I believe the rewards of my labor will outweigh the cost of the journey/process/task at hand?
If I really believed the rewards of my healthful eating and consistent exercise would be health, strength, God-honoring stewardship of my body (His temple) and that THAT was far more valuable than my doughnut consumption, then I would choose to honor Him with my decisions.
Or that it really would be a far greater blessing to my kids or my wife to wash the dishes, rather than to add to the chaos in the kitchen and that THAT was for more valuable than me relaxing on the couch for an extra 30 minutes.
The reality is that many of us do not really believe the rewards are better than the sacrifice. Before you argue and say “Well, I do believe it, but my flesh is weak….” or “I would do it for a more holy reason that simply getting a bigger reward…” – ok ok, your Sunday School teacher applauds your answer (lol), here is the deal:
1Therefore, since we have so great a cloud of witnesses surrounding us, let us also lay aside every encumbrance and the sin which so easily entangles us, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, 2fixing our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of faith, who for the joy set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God. 3For consider Him who has endured such hostility by sinners against Himself, so that you will not grow weary and lose heart.
We need to be honest with ourselves and ask the Lord for HIS strength, HIS perspective and HIS joy… that His joy would be our strength… that we would gladly take up our cross — that which causes your own flesh to die, your own desires to be considered unimportant — and to follow His lead.
Brothers, ask the Lord to help you die to yourself that you may live to Him!