January 10, 2014
(All scripture is from the New King James Version unless otherwise indicated.)
Every runner want to end the race Finishing Well, with a strong kick in his or her stride as the tape draws near! According to Hebrews 12:1 and 2, we are in a life-long race. How am I going to finish? How are you?
Everyone should have a goal in life. And it should be simply stated and repeated often. Such a goal is not necessarily equated with a purpose statement for your life. Paul’s purpose statement is summed up concisely in Philippians 1:21 – “For to me, to live is Christ, and to die is gain.” Until he died, he was going to dedicate his life to the Lord Jesus Christ with all his being. But I find Paul’s goal two chapters later in Philippians 3:14 – “I press toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus.” What do we find such a goal to include?
• John 3:2 – “…we know that when He [Jesus Christ] is revealed, we shall be like
Him; for we shall see Him as He is.”
• Revelation 21:4 – “…God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes; and there
shall be no more death, neither sorrow, nor crying, neither shall there
be any more pain….”
• I Thessalonians 4:14 and 17 (Good News Bible)– “…God will take back with
Jesus those who have died believing in Him…then we…will be gathered
up with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air. And so we will
always be with the Lord…,” – reunited with Christian loved ones!
There is a lot more in that goal of “…the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus,” but what I have just stated is a taste of the goal Paul had in mind.
What is my goal in life? I find it best summed up in six words found in Matthew 25:21 and 23 – “Well done, good and faithful servant….”
Jesus told this Parable of the Talents to His disciples, and it is recorded in Matthew 25:14 through 30. When He mentioned talents, He is referring to a measure of money (silver) worth by today’s standards about $32,000. Five talents of silver would then be worth almost $162,000. I will try to get the gist of the story in verses 14 through16 and 19 through 21:
For the kingdom of heaven is as a man traveling to a far country, who called
his own servants, and delivered his goods to them. And to one he gave five
talents, to another two, and to another one…and immediately he went on a
journey. Then he that had received the five talents went and traded with them,
and made another five talents….After a long time the lord of those servants
came, and settled accounts with them. So he who had received five talents
came and brought five other talents, saying, “Lord, you delivered to me five
talents; look, I have gained five more talents beside them.” His lord said to
him, “Well done, good and faithful servant; you were faithful over a few
things, I will make you ruler over many things. Enter into the joy of your
The two-talent recipient heard the same words because he also had doubled his lord’s money. But the one-talent man was condemned and thrown out because he did nothing with what was entrusted to him.
Of course this parable applies to Jesus and His followers. He has given us so much, in time, talents and treasure, including special spiritual gifts. Every believer is His recipient. Until we see our Lord face to face, what are we doing with what He has entrusted to us? How are we using His gifts to further His Kingdom? If in Luke 19:10 Jesus said, “For the Son of Man has come to seek and to save that which was lost…,” should not we then use what He has given us to be about the same business?
I have fallen on my face so many times in my walk as a Christian. And yes, He picks me back up, dusts me off, and – sometimes with a whack on the behind – says, “Now let’s go! But this time stick closer with Me!” And I try to live my life for Him and bless others – leading the unsaved to Jesus and building believers up in the Lord.
But when it is all said and done, and when He reviews my life – as He will with all Christians, according to I Corinthians 3:10 through 15 – what will my Lord Jesus say to me? Will it be, “Well, Chip, you certainly could have done better!” Or will He say, “Well done, good and faithful servant….” Those six words are the main impetus for me to live my life in obedience to Word of God and for His glory!
What is your goal in life? Do you want to be Finishing Well?