The Eternal Prize


“Don’t you know that the runners in a stadium all race, but only one receives the prize? Run in such a way to win the prize. Now everyone who competes exercises self-control in everything. They do it to receive a perishable crown, but we an imperishable crown. -- 1 Corinthians 9:24-25


As a member of the sports media, I hear quite a few stories about coaches and athletes who build their entire lives around their sport. They eat, sleep, breathe and live specifically to achieve their personal athletic goals. But then something unexpected happens. Suddenly, they’re stripped of the sport that had occupied so much of their time and energy. And when it’s gone, they’re left with nothing. Complete emptiness.

It’s at this point that many coaches and athletes realize they need something more — something that can’t be found in trophies or medals — something that is eternal. God has brought them to this point for them to realize their need for Him and to show them that all aspects of this world are temporary. Nothing will last forever except the crown of life that can only be found in a relationship with Jesus.

Today, make sure that the most important race you are running is the one that offers the prize of eternity. Run to “receive an imperishable crown.”

  • What is your motivation for competing? Is it for self? For God’s glory?
  • How would you react if your sport were taken away from you today?

“God, help me to keep my eyes focused on the eternal prize. I want You to be first in my priorities and I want to compete for Your glory, not mine. Amen.”