Focus on the Prize
This is the day that the LORD has made; let us rejoice and be glad in it.
It’s been said that the difference between a morning person and someone who is not a morning person is that the morning person wakes up and says, “Good morning, Lord!” The non-morning person wakes up and says, “Good Lord, it’s morning!” To make matters worse--it’s Monday! Yet the psalmist writes: “This is the day that the LORD has made; let us rejoice and be glad in it” (Ps. 118:24). Regardless of what we may be going through, every day is a gift from God and a reason to celebrate and rejoice. I don’t mean to sound like Pollyanna, and I certainly don’t want to diminish the real struggles that people face in everyday life. But so often we can make the struggles we have even more difficult by focusing on them too long, by giving them too much of our attention. When reflecting upon past and present struggles, Paul’s response was to say, “But one thing I do: forgetting what lies behind and straining forward to what lies ahead, I press on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus” (Phil. 3:13-14). We cannot change the past, so then let us press forward toward the goal, toward the prize who is Christ Jesus himself. If we keep our eyes more focused on Christ than on the struggles of this life, the load we bear can be a little easier to carry.
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