SWORD OF THE SPIRIT 1206
I press on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus; Do you not know that in a race all the runners run, but only one receives the prize? So run that you may obtain it. – Philippians 3:14; 1 Corinthians 9:24
One of my childhood heroes was Thomas Edison. (Yes, I was that nerdy kid). The man who became one of the most prolific inventors in history was the child whose teachers said he was too stupid to learn anything. For every successful invention, Thomas Edison endured thousands of failed attempts. Undaunted by failure, Edison is quoted as stating, ‘I have not failed. I’ve just found ten thousand ways that won’t work’. Edison pressed on toward the prize he envisioned before him.
Paul the Apostle was also one who suffered much ‘failure’ yet pressed on in the power and grace of Jesus Christ. He was whipped, beaten, stoned, shipwrecked and adrift at sea. He was in constant danger, hungry, thirsty, and cold. 2 Corinthians 11:24-27 Yet Paul acknowledged his weakness and he knew that his strength was found in Christ alone.
For the sake of Christ, then, I am content with weaknesses, insults, hardships, persecutions, and calamities. For when I am weak, then I am strong. – 2 Corinthians 12:10
Paul never lost sight of the goal and the prize of eternal life that the Lord promised those who believe and have faith in Him.
Let not your hearts be troubled. Believe in God; believe also in me. In my Father’s house are many rooms. If it were not so, would I have told you that I go to prepare a place for you? And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and will take you to myself, that where I am you may be also. – John 14:1-3
We all fail. The question is, will we get back up? Will we ‘fail forward’ pressing on toward the goal and prize that Jesus has promised us?
for the righteous falls seven times and rises again, but the wicked stumble in times of calamity. – Proverbs 24:16
Fear of failure paralyzes us and hinders our faith walk with the Lord. The enemy of our souls is quick to pounce upon us when we fail, planting seeds of discouragement. We must always remember the Truth of the Word of the Lord that our success is not dependent upon our abilities but rather upon the grace and power of the Lord working in and through us.
Then he said to me, “This is the word of the Lord to Zerubbabel: Not by might, nor by power, but by my Spirit, says the Lord of hosts. – Zechariah 4:6
Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be frightened, and do not be dismayed, for the Lord your God is with you wherever you go.” – Joshua 1:9
In our Christian walk, many of us stumble, fall, and lack the will to get back up. This is because we have abandoned our first love. We have allowed the ashes of the things of this world to smother the flame of our relationship with Jesus. The glowing embers remain – fan them into flame, seek first His kingdom and righteousness, and press on toward the goal and prize that Jesus has set before you.
But I have this against you, that you have abandoned the love you had at first. – Revelation 2:4
May your Christian walk be characterized as ‘failing forward’ by His power and grace as you press on toward the goal and prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus.
The steps of a man are established by the Lord, when he delights in his way; though he fall, he shall not be cast headlong, for the Lord upholds his hand. – Psalm 37:23-24