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. Therefore I do not run like someone running aimlessly; I do not fight like a boxer beating the air. No, I strike a blow to my body and make it my slave so that after I have preached to others, I myself will not be disqualified for the prize.

– 1 Corinthians 9:25-27 (NIV)

Today’s commentary
by Dave Whitehead, Senior Pastor, GraceNYC.org

As we approach the Olympics one is struck with how much focus it takes to even credibly compete in the Games. The apostle Paul looks at our spiritual walk in the same way. Walking with Christ demands thoughtfulness and discipline. Getting the crown that lasts forever requires that we examine our time, our talent and our treasures the same way that an athlete examines their abilities to compete. We need training. We need to allow boundaries that keep us from beating the air. Preaching the gospel is not enough to complete the course. We must let the gospel challenge us personally and keep us qualified for the race ahead.

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