Friday, August 1, 2008

Pressing Forward

But one thing I do:
“forgetting what

lies behind and
straining forward
to what lies ahead,

I press on toward
the goal…

Philippians 3:13b-14a

Athletes are perfect illustrations for how God wants us to live life as a Jesus follower. Endurance, strength, character, perseverance, discipline are just part of what makes up a world class athlete. But the ability to put behind them past failures or mishaps and focus on the ultimate goal is the perfect example for a Jesus follower. Ice skaters may take a tumble in the middle of a gold medal program but so far I’ve never seen one skate off the ice—they always get up; focusing on the goal even if the fall has cost them.

Forgetting “stuff” that has happened in the past is tough. Like Christian in Pilgrim’s Progress we carry it around with us even though the weight digs into our spirit. When we are bowed by the hurts, fears, betrayals, misunderstandings, rejections of our lives it’s impossible to see any of the beauty that lies ahead.

Jesus had a lot of “stuff” happen to him. From the start people were out for his blood. He was misunderstood. He was rejected. Friends denied knowing him. Betrayal led to his ultimate death. But, he never looked back nor did he carry any of the baggage. He kept the goal of the Kingdom in site and in order to reach it he kept moving forward.

When you watch the Olympics this summer think about the spiritual parallels. With every pulsing muscle and disciplined breath they strain forward. They never look back. The goal is ahead, not behind them.

Jesus, your life is a comfort
and an inspiration. You know
the “stuff” I keep lugging around.
Forgive me! Take from me
everything that keeps me from reaching You.
Image of Pilgrim's Progress from

No comments: