I learn best by teaching and doing. If I teach it or do it, I learn about it.
Our SportsCamp is a wrap. Great week of fun, frivolity and friends with over 120 kids from our community. Each night we talked about running the race of life using the advice the Apostle Paul gave to a group of Christians in the ancient city of Corinth. Corinth was home to the Isthmian Games, an Olympic styled athletic event held there every few years. They were a city of over-achievers and partiers, so they knew a bit about running.
Here's what I learned by teaching it to a bunch of kids.
Everyone runs. Everyone is in the race of life. If you don't want to run, too bad, the race has already started. The choice isn't about whether you'll run, it's about how you'll run.
One wins. Run to win. God doesn't see things the way we see things. He doesn't compare your race to someone else's race. He has given you your own race and wants you to win it. Fall down? Get back up. Distracted? Refocus. Ready to give up? Don't quit. God has given you occasions to fight that you might win. His resurrection power is in you. Don't give up any ground that's been given to you.
All good athletes train hard. If you are going to win the race God has given you, it will require your very best effort, your highest potential and your deepest devotion. You won't win it by being half-hearted, half-in, or half-way committed. Be all in.
They do it for a gold medal that tarnishes and fades. The race often has spectators who offer distractions, cheap knock-off prizes that look real, and detours to alternate destinations. Don't be fooled. Don't be tricked. Don't be deceived. Don't confuse good things for ultimate things. Have good things, but don't let them have you.
You're after one that's gold eternally. What God offers is ultimate and unending. It never spoils, rots or fades. It won't rip, tear or fall apart. It won't take up space on a shelf somewhere, mean nothing and be forgotten by everyone but you. And he gives it to you now. It's salvation; being caught up fully in the life of God.
The highlight video from Camp.