The summer Olympics have wrapped up, and the USA has earned its medal count. The Olympics aren’t the only four-year event cycle. The Republican and the Democratic Conventions are going on, preceding the presidential election. Similarly, people come from all over to attend these events, and spectators watch as the best contend for the top prize. Each spectator takes a path to these events, knowing they will cheer for their selection. Some travel hundreds of miles, some travel thousands of miles.
These are exciting moments, but many cannot remember whom the contestants were after time has passed. Yet, there are private events when each one of us responds to God-led travel: to the hospital to visit someone sick, to a conference room to comfort a fellow worker who just got downsized, or to a home where strife has fractured yet another cord in a relationship.
Many nations and people train to compete against the best and are amazed at their achievements. The road each traveled is diverse. From cities or from little villages, avenues of riches, dirt paths of poverty, freedom or bondage, they come. After it’s all over, they all go back. To what? To glory or shame. To adulation or to exile. But for the one IN the heat of the contest, it was all worth it.
Political conventions and presidential elections
Citizens sacrifice and relish being part of a political platform that battles for a position to lead. We are amazed at the volumes of money raised and consumed, the attacks and counterattacks, and the fever pitch the rhetoric rises to. The road that each traveled is also diverse. From cities or from little villages, avenues of riches, dirt paths of poverty, freedom or bondage, they come. After it’s all over, they all go back. To what? To gloating? To resentment? To bitterness? To adulation or to exile? But for the one IN the heat of the contest, it was all worth it.
Christian responsibilities at home and at work
We also must prepare every day to serve the Lord along our particular road in life. As we touch others, there may be celebrations or not. But when we extend our abilities and our lives to reach out into another person’s world, the results can be measured in eternal significance. A missionary who goes to another country is actually in a pentathlon sacrificing on many fronts. A weeping husband collapsing at the foot of the lady he loved for 50 years is running a torrid race of endurance. A man who risks his career, because he reached out to a man lost in his sins, fights for his vocational life.
Are there medals for this? Will people cheer? Are there lofty positions for this? And after it’s all over, what happens? Defeat or triumph? Joy or regret? But when we are IN the battle for Him, HE is with us. Elijah and Jonah knew first hand about supernatural running speeds. We want to be on HIS side, don’t we?
“Lord, we might never remember who won a particular sports contest or who lost a particular election. But we never forget those who lent us a shoulder to cry on, rendered a measure of financial aid when hope seemed lost, a prayer lifted up through turbulent storm clouds, or a handshake in congratulations of a great achievement. Let us run the race that’s set before us in YOUR love, Lord. The only asset worth giving is love. And when we love like YOU love, Lord, it won’t be a medal; it will be a crown. In Christ’s Name. Amen.”
– Lee Kresser