Wednesday, April 22, 2015

DYB, part two

God calls us not to success
               but faithfulness,
not to a reasonably good effort,
                but to our best
    in whatever He places before us.

"Over the gate at University of Pennsylvania, there is a motto.  It reads, 'In the dust of defeat as well as in the laurels of victory there is a glory to be found if one has done his best.'  There are many men and women who have done their best, but who have not succeeded in gaining the laurels of victory.  To them, as much honour is due as to those who have received these laurels."

These words were not spoken by a wanna-be or a justification by someone in last place, but spoken by Eric Liddell who won a gold medal in running at the 1924 Olympics and left his running career to serve as a missionary in China.  Liddell's story was popularized by the 1981 movie Chariots of Fire.

In a biography about his life God's Joyful Runner, a story is also told about journalists surrounding him after his Olympic victory, waiting for him to proclaim some kind of overtly religious claim for his overwhelming gold medal performance in the 400 meter race.

"The secret of my success over the 400 meters," Liddell responded to the reporters, "is that I run the first 200 meters as hard as I can. Then, for the second 200 meters, with God's help, I run harder."

DYB.  Do Your Best.

The matter is not running hard enough for God, as if we are performing for His approval, but simply running as hard as I can for His glory.  The latter is a great delight.

In whatever God places before you today,
        no matter what,
        no matter where,
        no matter a cheering crowd
                  or in total anonymity,
do your best.
                  It matters.
                  It matters a lot.

Do you not know that in a race
all the runners compete,
but only one receives the prize?
         So run that you may obtain it.
Every athlete exercises self control
                                 in all things.
They do it to receive a perishable wreath,
              but we an unperishable.

                         1 Corinthians 9. 24-25

Whether an athlete
         or an accountant,
crossing the finish line first place
       or mopping up a mess,
behind the scenes
         or leading a nation,
there is a glory to be found,
         and that would be His.

Run hard, my friend.
Do Your Best

No comments: