Summary: Three choices that will keep you out of the winners circle.
Dakota Community Church
Running To Win
2Timothy 2: 3-7
Endure hardship with us like a good soldier of Christ Jesus. No one serving as a soldier gets involved in civilian affairs–he wants to please his commanding officer. Similarly, if anyone competes as an athlete, he does not receive the victor’s crown unless he competes according to the rules. The hardworking farmer should be the first to receive a share of the crops. Reflect on what I am saying, for the Lord will give you insight into all this.
2Corinthians 2: 14-15
But thanks be to God, who always leads us in triumphal procession in Christ and through us spreads everywhere the fragrance of the knowledge of him. For we are to God the aroma of Christ among those who are being saved and those who are perishing.
God needs us to win so we don’t stink!
Stinking thinking will cost you the victory. In sports you always hear athletes talking about the mental game.
Teams are said to be in the zone or out of focus.
Right decisions done repeatedly over time compound success, wrong decisions done repeated over time compound failure.
You are where you are in life, not because of bad luck, not because of a conspiracy against you, not because of bad parentage; but because of the choices you have made.
What will cause you to lose a race in the natural?
- Not being fast enough, but really if you finish an Olympic race you are a winner!
- For cheating; drug use, shortcuts, etc.
- Running in someone else’s lane
- Interference with other runners.
Three choices that will cost you the win:
1. Choosing to play the victim.
This is a very popular choice these days because it releases the person from feeling responsible for the state of their life.
- Victims focus on why they are losing, not on how to win.
- They complain: “It’s not fair.”
- Victims are never responsible for their plight.
- Why would God allow this to happen? They ask.
- Victims turn on their team mates. (The enemy uses this truth)
Whenever a team fights amoung themselves it is always an encouragement to their opponents.
When playing floor hockey with the Jr. High boys (In my youth pastoring days) there was one boy, who had a great shot. Whenever I faced him I would point out to his team mates that he was hogging all the shots. Soon they would be fighting and not passing him the ball. Win for Pastor Dan.
Numbers 14: 1-4
That night all the people of the community raised their voices and wept aloud. 2 All the Israelites grumbled against Moses and Aaron, and the whole assembly said to them, "If only we had died in Egypt! Or in this desert! 3 Why is the LORD bringing us to this land only to let us fall by the sword? Our wives and children will be taken as plunder. Wouldn’t it be better for us to go back to Egypt?" 4 And they said to each other, "We should choose a leader and go back to Egypt."
SIGN FOR THE BATHROOM DOOR of A FORMER VICTIM:
Attention Everyone: The Bathroom Door is Closed!
Please do not stand there and talk, whine or ask questions.
Wait until I get out.
Yes, it is locked. I want it that way.
No, it is not broken; I am not trapped.
I know I have left it unlocked, and even open at times, since you were born, because I was afraid some horrible tragedy might occur while I was in there.
But it’s been ten years, and I want some privacy.
Do not ask me how long I will be.
I will come out when I am done.
Do not bring the phone to the bathroom door.
Do not go running back to the phone yelling, “She’s in the bathroom!”
Do not begin to fight as soon as I go in.
Do not stick your little fingers under the door and wiggle them.
This was funny only when you were two.
Do not slide pennies, Lego’s, or notes under the door,
Even when you were two, this got a little tiresome.
If you have followed me down the hall, talking,
And are still talking as you face this closed door,
Please turn around, walk away and wait for me in another room.
I will be glad to listen to you when I am done.
Oh…and yes, I still love you. Mom
SOURCE: Espresso for a Woman’s Spirit by Pam Vredevelt.
2. Choosing to be a spectator.
Most people would rather sit in the grandstands of life and shout criticisms than risk the field of conflict to obtain the crown of victory.